Examining Sustainability at Barnard

Books at Barnard

Books circulating in the Barnard community

Checking out books

At Barnard, students can access a physical copy of Race After Technology by using the Course Reserves. This text is also available in an online format and at Columbia libraries. If a student wants or needs a physical copy, and the copies at Barnard and Columbia are unavailable, they would also have the option of using BorrowDirect or Interlibrary Loan to have the book sent from a peer institution. Of course, this would require additional transportation to have the book shipped from another institution. 

Students check out books from the circulation desk on the second level of Milstein. The people who work at circulation are either library staff or student workers. Fortunately, the working conditions of the Milstein Center are much better than those at other steps of this process, however, it is crucial to note that the majority of student workers are low-income students on Federal Work Study. More often than not, only working in a position like this because their financial situation and aid package requires it. While student workers receive compensation/payment for their work, the additional stresses of having a campus job (or jobs) makes the student experience at Barnard, or any school, unequal. 

Handling used books 

Community members will donate their old books to the FLIP library so that other students can use them for their own courses. Students have to purchase many, many books that they only use for one class or one semester, and having the option to donate these books to FLIP not only reduces waste, but allows for low-income students to access course materials free of charge. 

When College-owned books need repairs, the library will typically pay to repair the books. If the library chooses not to, or can not spend the money, they send the book to Betterworld Books, which is a company that sells used books and gives money to libraries. If the book is beyond repair, then Barnard recycles it. 

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