Dispatches from 4 AM

wp_20141212_04_31_49_proAt 4 AM, the library is nearly silent except for the whirrr of vacuums and the suppressed giggles of tired, delirious students.  Tables are crammed with notes, laptops, and, occasionally, a sleeper.  This is 4 AM during the library’s inaugural 24 hour opening for finals. In a place normally closed from 1:00 AM through 7:00 AM, the lights here have not been turned off since its closing on the previous Saturday.  They will continue to stay on until 6:00 PM on Friday, December 12th.

Stoney Burks, junior in History & Education.

What kind of students are here at 4 AM?  As it turns out, all kinds.  Stoney Burks, a history and education major, was just here trying to find a quiet place to read while his roommate plays video games.

While many reported the usual suspect—procrastination—as the primary reason for the early hours, others, like Bethany Skaggs, a junior double majoring in Economics & Finance and Marketing & Management, replied that she prefers studying at night, especially since her days are so busy with other activities.

Another student replied, “I’m just waiting here until my final at 7:00 AM.  I’m too scared I will sleep through my alarm if I fall asleep now!”

Marques Ennett, junior in Economics & Finance.

For many of the students here at this time, it was the quiet that drew them.  Marques Ennett, a junior majoring in Economics and Finance, was working alone in a back corner, studying for his finals the next day.  “The environment is much quieter at the library,” he replied when asked why he chose to come here.  Like other students, he works during the day when he’s not classes.   So if he needs to study, he must do it during the late hours.

For students without computers, the library also represented the only place open late to access the research, software, and printers they need to finish assignments.  In addition to examinations, projects and papers are also due during finals.  “My computer at home is kind of buggy, but this one is not,” said one student, working on a research paper.

Most of the students not at computer desks were found clumped together at tables and within study rooms to help keep each other awake.  “I would be asleep if I was in my dorm,” said one night owl.  “It helps to be around a group.”

Caitlin Hicks, a freshman majoring in Middle-Level Education sleepily waited across a table for her friend, Kaily Sibrian to finish up an essay.


Caitlin Hicks & Kaily Sibrian trying to stay awake and on task

When they were asked why they didn’t prefer some place like Denny’s to study, Kaily said, “At a food place, I would be more tempted to buy something.”

“It’s too easy to get distracted,” added Caitlin.

wp_20141203_01_42_05_proOne does not often make it to 4 AM on good company alone, however.  It sometimes takes caffeine or sugar to keep burning the midnight oil.  As a special treat, the campus administration sponsored coffee and snacks during the late hours to help students go that extra mile through the night.  Many listed the coffee as the top perk of the evening, both in terms of happiness and in actual metabolic rates.

To the 46 or so students here at 4 AM–and to all other ATU students–we in the Ross Pendergraft Library & Technology Center salute you for all of your hard work this semester.  If you’ve got a picture or a story to tell us about studying all night in the library, send it to us at askalibrarian@atu.edu or post on our Facebook or Twitter pages.  We’d love to know your opinions about the 24-hour service, and what we can do to make your final exams a little easier to get through in the future.  Best of luck on the rest of the exams, and most importantly, get some sleep!!!

Wireless printing

Just need to print off a paper but the computers in the library are full?  Never fear—wireless printing is here!  Bring your laptop to the Ross Pendergraft Library & Technology Center and send a print job over the wireless network.  No more waiting around for someone to get off the computer before you can print.


Follow these instructions for stress-free printing even on the busiest days:

  1. Using your laptop, open Internet Explorer
  2. Type \\unip-psrv1 and hit “ENTER”.
  3. You should be prompted for your username and password. Enter your username in the format of username@atu.edu and then your password.
  4. Once connected, you should see a list of printers. Find the printer that says “RPL Universal Print Queue” and double-click the icon. This will connect and install the black and white printer on your computer. rpl2
  5. Click the “RPL3CL HP Color Queue $0.30” for color prints.rpl1

You should now be able to select one of these printers from your laptop.   You will still need to go to one of the release stations in the library to “release” your print job from the queue.  To do this, log in to one of the release stations located on each floor of the library, and your document (s) should be there.  Keep in mind, also, that the color printer is located only on the third floor.

If you have any questions or need additional help, come visit any of the librarians at the Reference desk for immediate assistance.  You can also visit the Office of Information Systems help desk, right in the North lobby of the library.


Holiday Hours


Happy Thanksgiving!  The Ross Pendergraft Library & Technology Center will be closed starting at noon, Wednesday, November 25th, and will not re-open until Sunday, November 30th at 2:00 P.M. And then....we'll just stay open...until FRIDAY, … [Continue reading]

On Trial

The deadline for our latest collection trial databases is closing in fast.  Take advantage of these free collections while they last: Ebrary Thousands of full-text, academic e-books are at your disposal from now until Wednesday, November 26th. … [Continue reading]

Attention night owls


You asked for it, and it is finally here: the Ross Pendergraft Library & Technology Center will be open 24 hours beginning Sunday, November 30th.  We will open Nov. 30 at 2:00 PM and remain open until Friday, December 5th, at 6:00 PM.  On … [Continue reading]

Welcome Brent Etzel


The Ross Pendergraft Library & Technology Center is thrilled to officially welcome Brent Etzel as the new Library Director.  Monday, November 3rd, marked his first day at Arkansas Tech University, taking over the position after the retirement of … [Continue reading]

Farewell, Bill Parton

10557240_754582724607683_2174617170705522115_n (1)

Bill Parton, Library Director for Arkansas Tech University, will be retiring after 24 years of being with the Arkansas Tech family.  Friday, October 31st, marks Parton’s last day as Director for the Ross Pendergraft Library and Technology Center, and … [Continue reading]

On Trial


The Library is hosting several new databases and collections for a limited time only.  Should we purchase one database over the other?  You decide!!!  Test drive these collections and databases today: Birds of North America Online: … [Continue reading]

Thursday Night

On Thurday, take a break from campus and head over to Russellville City Hall where our good friend and local celebrity author, Slade Dupuy, will help unveil the new Pope County Library System logo.  Slade has been with the library for a number of … [Continue reading]

Going, going, gone


You only have two more days to test the new BP Global Energy Data Visualization Tool.  The Library is currently conducting a trial of this product which maps major energy developments from the last 27 years.  The trial ends on … [Continue reading]