December 10, 2014
Tagged: Adelphi University, Garden City, Adelphi Magazine, Adelphi Libraries

Back to the Future


by Erin Donohue

SwirbulEnter Swirbul Library, and you are struck by its open, light-infused interior. Its famed architect, Richard Neutra—an admirer of Frank Lloyd Wright—intended that. Neutra “was truly a visionary,” said Brian Lym, dean of University Libraries at Adelphi. Lym has channeled Neutra in leading a renovation of Swirbul that harkens to his original vision while simultaneously addressing the changing demands on library space.

“My vision for the growth of the Adelphi libraries—as a digital resource—is that we’ll be acquiring more and more online,”Lym said. “That’s just the way of the present and of the future.”

To make way for the digital revolution and the interconnectivity and collaboration that it has inspired, the library has replaced the familiar periodicals shelves on the first floor with open areas, which echo Neutra’s original plan and are equipped to meet the power demands of contemporary devices. New to the floor plan are 10 collaboration studios. Enclosed with glass, the studios contain whiteboard walls and wheeled worktables to foster collaborative learning and study.

Library users will be able to enter the library directly from the north side—the one that will face the new Nexus Building and Welcome Center.

Also on the first floor is a new 3D printing studio. The studio—in place of the old copy center—contains four Makerbot 3D printers; a Filabot, which recycles plastic to make new filament (the ink of 3D printers); and two Next Engine 3D laser scanners, which create digital images of 3D three-dimensional objects.

The second-floor Gallagher Laboratory—a classroom outfitted with computer terminals—has been transformed with wireless connectivity and mobile workspaces that encourage interaction and group work. The multiple display screens lining the walls accommodate simultaneous presentations.

“Neutra envisioned Swirbul as a “living library”—full of activity,” Lym said. “With the collaboration studios…and more room for group work, this vision is coincidentally being further realized.”

About Adelphi: A modern metropolitan university with a personalized approach to higher learning.

Adelphi University is a highly awarded, nationally ranked, powerfully connected doctoral research university offering exceptional liberal arts and sciences programs and professional training with particular strength in its Core Four—Arts and Humanities, STEM and Social Sciences, the Business and Education Professions, and Health and Wellness. Adelphi is dedicated to transforming students’ lives through small classes, hands-on learning and innovative ways to support student success.

Founded in Brooklyn in 1896, Adelphi is Long Island’s oldest private coeducational university. Today Adelphi serves nearly 8,000 students at its beautiful main campus in Garden City, New York—just 23 miles from New York City’s cultural and internship opportunities—and at dynamic learning hubs in Manhattan, the Hudson Valley and Suffolk County, and online.

More than 100,000 Adelphi graduates have gained the skills to thrive professionally as active, caring citizens, making their mark on the University, their communities and the world.

Tagged: Adelphi University, Garden City, Adelphi Magazine, Adelphi Libraries