Veterinary library takes water damage; repairs await approval

Justin Ware

The University Veterinary Medical Library holds one the largest and most extensive collections of its kind in the world. However, leaky roofs are endangering a significant portion of the library’s material.

“If it’s veterinary and in the English language, we have it,” said Livija Carlson, head librarian of the massive collection.

Carlson has been at the University as a student and library employee for 43 years. When it comes to overdue facility repairs she said, “I’m used to this.”

Facilities Management obtained funding for the preliminary design plans for the roof repair project several weeks ago.

Facilities Management said the repairs will start when the Legislature finalizes the University’s budget allocation. If it receives the necessary funds, repairs will commence this fall. Officials have not yet ascertained the total cost of the repairs.

The repairs will take 60 to 90 days and will not disrupt students using the veterinary medical facility.

Carlson said she is concerned about the lack of funding the library received in the past and is nervous about what predicted state budget shortfalls might mean for the library.

The Veterinary Medical Library receives little funding in comparison to most University facilities. The library was built in 1971 and it still has most of the original furniture.

“People think they could get rid of us and use the (Internet),” Carlson said of the sentiment currently surrounding libraries.

She noted without the library’s research and Web material selection, the information would not be available for use.

“We’re not a black hole,” Carlson said.

“Some people think of (the study of veterinary medicine) as a step down when compared to studying humans,” Carlson said, “I think of it as a step up.”

A portion of the veterinary library information is useful for studying human-related medicine.

A significant portion of molecular biology research performed on animals can be found in the veterinary library.

 

Justin Ware covers University facilities and construction and welcomes comments at [email protected]