With over 20,000 views and 218 shares on Facebook, the recently installed coffee vending machine in the Troy University campus library is a hot topic.
“I guess the coffee machine is the biggest thing we have ever done apparently,” said Chris Shaffer, dean of library services.
In comparison, roughly 7,300 people viewed the page announcing the installation of the exercise bicycles in the library, which allow students to both workout and study simultaneously.
“Obviously there was a perceived need (for a coffee machine) as far as that goes,” Shaffer said.
In addition to the coffee machine, Shaffer said that the library has received recent updates and upgrades, such as two filtered water fountains, fresh carpeting and painting, six movable glass boards and a total of eight study rooms equipped with whiteboard paint.
Shaffer expressed his concern that the coffee machine does not have lids for the beverages and has contacted the vendor to see if lids are available for purchase.
“Even with the best of intentions, accidents happen,” Shaffer said.
Sydni Sweet, a junior communication studies major from Huntsville and avid coffee drinker, said that she appreciates the effort on the library’s part to provide, coffee. However, she would prefer to go to Einstein’s where she can use her flex points.
“I think that it is really awesome that they (the library) want to provide coffee, but I don’t think it is good quality coffee that I am willing to drink,” Sweet said.
“For so long, we have been told no food or drink can be brought into the library, and we asked for a coffee café in the library, and they have not done that,” Sweet said. “Instead they would rather pay for a machine that doesn’t really provide much.”
Furthermore, an evening staff member has been hired to allow extended hours until 2 a.m. Sunday through Wednesday. This will be implemented in about two weeks according to Shaffer.
Hayden Judah, a senior exercise major from Newton, goes to the library typically three to four times a week and he was pleased to hear of the extended hours and the new coffee machine.
There will no longer be “special hours” during exams, summer term or between sessions because of the regular extensions.
Shaffer said that during the regular semester, there are about 150-200 students in the library at any given moment.
“I figured during exams, take that high number and add 50 to 75 and that’s what we would have,” Shaffer said. “For the two biggest days of finals we never went below 300 students in the library.”
Judah said that while studying during finals week, the library was somewhat loud and packed with students.
“I recommend more facilities for studying such as more tables and chairs and private rooms, and I would like to be able to bring in outside food and drinks in addition to having a place to get those in the library,” Judah said.
Darunda “D” Wilkins, a senior business major from Montgomery, said that the improvements are beneficial to students.
“It is a very wonderful thing they have done here on campus,” Wilkins said. “It really gives students the opportunity to push beyond their normal standards of sitting down, listening to music and just reading their books. Having that coffee right there keeps them going.
“I know a lot of students, including myself, who don’t study until late at night so having extended hours plus the coffee machine is a win-win.”