The Academic Affairs Committee of the Student Government Association (SGA) and Sebastian Derry, assistant dean for Public Services at Walsh Library, are introducing a laptop lending program for SHU students set to launch the week of Oct. 26.
Students can borrow one of the four laptops, on a first-come first-served basis, in cases where they forget their laptops in their dorms or at home, catch a virus or damage their laptop when they most need it, such as in the case of assignment deadlines or timed online exams and assignments.
Ami Patel, sophomore nursing major and SGA Academic Affairs chair, was inspired to make a fellow student’s request a reality that she said she hopes will help students “to produce their best academic outcomes.”
Students will need to come to the library’s circulation desk with their identification cards and fill out a laptop loan agreement form Students will be able to borrow a laptop for four hours, according to Dean Derry. Students will
be held responsible for losing or damaging the laptops and accessories that are within their care.
Patel and fellow sophomore Patrick Barron, dual history and economics major and SGA College of Arts and Sciences senator, both met with and pitched the idea to Dean Derry. Barron had suggested in a past SGA meeting to reuse old laptops at the library for the sake of the environment. His idea, along with Patel’s, worked well together and the idea of the laptop lending program was a way to “recycle and help students too,” Barron said.
“It’s a great idea, and I’m very pleased that SGA reached out to the library,” Dean Derry said. “We are always looking for opportunities to improve existing services or to develop new ones. Collaborating with SGA has not only given us such an opportunity, it has also given us direct student input and feedback which is invaluable.”
There are several benefits to the new pilot program. According to Barron, in the case of a student forgetting their laptop at home, they can easily access their documents on the rental laptops granted they save their work to file storage sites such as Dropbox.
In response to those who may say that the rentals are unnecessary due to all the desktops available at the library, Barron said that it will “give students more options.” Some students, Barron said, “value privacy and would like to have a laptop (and) go upstairs (in the library) to do work.”
Patel said, rather than “being forced to use the desktops on the second floor,” where it is often noisy and busy, students can take the rental laptops to the less crowded third and fourth floors of the library.
Justine Sha, second-year English graduate student and teaching assistant in the English department said that, “while it’s a good idea, we can donate (the laptops) to high schools in the area who may not have access to enough laptops.”
Adam Leonelli, sophomore and marketing major, fully supports the initiative. “As a commuter who has forgotten to bring his laptop to school in the past,” he said, “I believe that this initiative will be beneficial to commuters in particular.” Leonelli said.
Noora Badwan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.