Why the Changes?
The USF School of Law realizes that legal education is changing. The law school of the future will emphasize practical skills as well as doctrinal classes. The changes to the Zief Law library, such as adding more seminar classrooms and a mix of group study spaces will better suit the anticipated changes. The law library also recognizes that with the continuing growth of digital resources the print collection of the library can be consolidated and streamlined. Crucial print materials will continue to be available but needless duplication of materials has been eliminated.
Ultimately, the total number of seats available to students and researchers will be greater than the number available prior to the renovation. Existing group study rooms have been renovated to include new technology and the total number of group study rooms will increased. In addition, some seminar rooms and class rooms will be available for student study when not in use for scheduled classes.
A Summer of Change.
Returning students and long-time patrons of the library will undoubtedly be struck by the changes taking place around the building during the summer of 2012. The Zief Law Library was designed with change in mind and the renovation that has started marks the beginning of a new phase in how the space will be utilized by students and other users. This web page is intended to give some information about what has happened and what to expect in the future.
On the Main Floor:
The most obvious change is the reshaping of the 1st level of the library to accommodate a new Study Commons. Using part of the area previously devoted to print sources, the Commons will be a comfortable place for students to study, meet and relax. The current seating is temporary and will be replaced with a mix of furniture in the next few months. The print materials previously located in this area have been moved to share the tall shelving that currently includes the California Collection.
Not as immediately noticeable is the consolidation of all of the Research Librarian's offices to an area at the front of the library. Amy Wright and Suzanne Mawhinney will be joining Lee Ryan and John Shafer in offices flanking the Research Desk. This centralization will make them more readily available to aid researchers in the Study Commons.
A number of important Law School programs have been relocated to new homes in the Zief Library. The Academic Support Program will be moving into all-new offices in the southwest corner of the library lower level. The Advocacy Programs will be consolidated in a new area in the southeast corner of the library. In addition, the Legal Research, Writing, and Analysis professors will be moving into new offices.
The classroom previously located in the area now used by the Advocacy Programs has been moved slightly to the north and an additional seminar classroom has been added near the ASP offices. Two large group study rooms have also been built and the two original group study rooms will ultimately include a wealth of new technology to assist students in their studies. A number of smaller group study rooms will also become available, including some that will be especially useful for On-Campus Interviews.
What the Future Holds:
As the law school enters its second century it will continue to look for the best and most appropriate use for all of the campus facilities. The Zief Law Library was designed with a high degree of flexibility in mind and it will undoubtedly change and grow to reflect the changing needs of the students, faculty and legal community who use the space. If you have any suggestions we would love to hear from you.
Library Director Ron Wheeler
You can contact Ron Wheeler at 415-422-2251 or via e-mail at: email@example.com