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Debby Ellis Writing Center Moves to Library Along With Other Renovations

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Debby Ellis Writing Center Moves to Library Along With Other Renovations


Photo Courtesy of A. Frank Smith, Jr. Library Center

The A. Frank Smith, Jr. Library Center will be undergoing renovations to update ways for students to work in the library. The renovations will not include the second and third floor and will be focused on the lobby. The upcoming changes will be meant to enhance students’ ability to study and research for individual or group assignments. Carol Fonken, the director of the library, is in charge of this project.

“We’re going to have a total facelift on the research commons floor,” said Fonken.

The furniture will be updated and the change will be focused on student flexibility. If a groups wants to meet on their first floor to study or work on a project, they can move furniture around to group up. Students can also move the furniture if they want to work by themselves. Power strips will also be added to accommodate more students who need to charge their devices while working. The computers in the lobby will stay.

The Debby Ellis Writing Center will also be moving to their first floor of the library. Currently, the center is in Mood-Bridwell, Room 304. The current music catalog room, SLC111, will turn into the new location for the writing center with new furniture and a large glass entry door that will be installed where a blank wall was.

“Research and writing are so much of a, kind of a continuum of a process,” said Fonken. “And this way we would be gathering everything that students need in support of that process right here in the library.”

Sophomore and Debby Ellis Writing Center Consultant, Julianne Carroll, is also excited for the center being relocated.

“I’m really excited to see what comes from this new change,” said Carroll. “I hope the move to the library will allow the writing center to gain more traction and facilitate its use.”

The last area in the library that will be changing is the Coffee Bar. The dark walls will be painted over with a brighter color and new furniture will be added. The idea is make the Coffee Bar more like a coffee shop for students to study and drink coffee in.

Student library worker and sophomore, Emily Dunn, is excited for the new look the library will have next semester.

“The designs they showed us are really cool and make the library look a lot more vibrant,” said Dunn.

The library is constantly trying to update the space to keep up with the new ways that students study. Ten years ago, the library’s lobby had large stacks reference books for research and the space was more for this purpose than group collaboration. Since then, a lot of research can be done through the online databases the library has access to and students can use the lobby for studying.

“We’ve made a lot of changes in the past ten years, to basically the layout of the first floor of the library because the ways students use a library has changed,” said Fonken.

The decision to move the Debby Ellis Writing Center to the library has also been in process for a couple years. It was a matter of getting together the right resources and the space for the writing center and students should be able to benefit from this move soon. The writing will keep their original hours and won’t be open till midnight, unlike the library hours.

The renovations should be completed by the beginning of the 2019 fall semester. Students will be able to enjoy the new additions to library for their research and studying for their new classes.


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