BU Today

Campus Life

At Mugar, “a FitRec for the Mind”

As computer services evolve, a $2.5 million revamp, but still a printing controversy


The new computer cluster, BU Common @ Mugar, features state-of-the-art workstations, an IT Help Desk, and study lounges with whiteboards for group study sessions. Photos by Kalman Zabarsky

Returning students walking into Mugar Memorial Library this semester are doing a double take. To the right, the familiar computer cluster that occupied substantial space on the first floor is gone, and the bulky reference books lining the walls have been moved to storage. Desks with PC workstations, private group-study spaces with whiteboards, and lounges with couches and chairs are new features. The IT Help Center occupies the wall that formerly displayed books by BU authors; straight ahead, a research center offers a 21st-century version of a reference desk, where students can seek professional help.

The idea, says University librarian Robert Hudson, Mugar’s director, is to provide a hub of study and interaction on campus, a common space for student work. That’s why the new space has been named BU Common @ Mugar.

“We’re trying to create a Fitness and Recreation Center for the mind,” says Hudson. “We can bring all the information services and resources together in a central location, with lots of support in practical things like printing and scanning, all the way up to research and learning.”

The $2.5 million initiative involved a complete renovation of the library’s first floor, the purchase of 200 energy-efficient ThinClient workstations, and the relocation of the computer lab and IT Help Center from 111 Cummington St. Several thousand books were moved to make way for the computer clusters, a shift that reflects changes in the way students and faculty use and exchange information, says Hudson.

“It’s really emblematic of what has happened to libraries in the last 15 years,” he says. “Our role as librarians continues to be teaching students how to think critically, how to use the information literacy skills we can teach them. When we had just paper and books, we legitimized the sources by having it on our shelves. Now, with the Wild West of the Internet, our role becomes a little more challenging.”

The Research Center is set up to help students navigate to myriad online reference material and get them away from the idea of “using the first thing that comes up on the screen,” Hudson says. “In that sense, I think we’re very aligned with faculty in both our teaching and research. And the expanded computing capability is going to bring us in closer touch with more students who are going to be engaged in academic activities at the library.”

Both the mezzanine level and the Practical Arts and Letters Study Lounge on the third floor have also been outfitted with new workstations and several group seating and study areas. The space also has new hours — the library will remain open until 2 a.m., Sundays through Thursdays, although 24/7 access to University computer stations at Cummington Street no longer is available.

Many of the library’s reference books will still be available, but 24 hours notice is needed to request those moved to storage.

The Common @ Mugar is the most visible element of a series of shifts in BU’s computing facilities this year, including the closing of University Computers (a second, central IT Help Center now occupies the store’s former space in Kenmore Square) and a limit on student printing. Both announcements prompted protests, especially new policies that restrict free printing. Joseph Mercurio, the University’s executive vice president, says that the changes are part of a broader effort to bring BU up to speed.

“The existing computing policy had been in place since 1992, and it’s now 2009 and the world of technology has changed incredibly,” Mercurio says. “The criticisms had a lot to do with declaring that the University was conserving expenditure, but the truth is, the University had made a major investment. We’re trying to do something here that is helpful to the students.”

The new workstations at the Common @ Mugar should provide far more computing power and speed. “This was a way to implement more green, efficient technology that would also give students improved levels of service, convenience, and support efficiencies,” says Tracy Schroeder, vice president for information systems and technology. “These machines should perform more quickly, boot more quickly, and the systems should be more reliable. The servers are placed in two different locations and are redundant to support them faster.”

The workstations will also be equipped with an extensive software list, including full Microsoft Office and Adobe suites, addressing student concerns about access to expensive but sometimes essential programs when the proposed computing changes were announced last April.

“I’ve taken classes in the past where I needed to use Photoshop, or something similar that’s really pricey,” says Laurel Koller (CAS’10). “That was the main reason, besides printing, that I would go to the ResNet labs.”

Eventually, Schroeder says, Information Systems & Technology hopes to make the software programs virtually accessible for students from their own laptops or desktops.

Other changes include the addition of ThinClient workstations in the residence halls’ renovated ResNet labs, now transformed into group study areas and equipped with wireless.

“In 1992, less than 50 percent of our students had computers,” says Mercurio. “In 2009, 95 percent arrive with laptops, and the majority of the students who use the ResNet labs do so primarily to have quiet study space and a place to print. We reconfigured all spaces in residential buildings into study areas where students could collaborate.”

While Mercurio sees the Common @ Mugar as a key investment in a University-wide computer strategy, he also acknowledges that the decision to limit free printing to 100 pages for each student per semester has prompted charges that the University has taken away a long-held student perk.

“Printing was one component of a whole series of changes,” he says. “Moving toward a Common, going wireless, creating study spaces where students can hook up and work together, new high-speed printers in the library and the major dorms, these are all part of what I’d call the expansive view.

“And so the only element we’ve gotten wrong in all this, if students indicating displeasure shows that, is the number of free pages we’re offering. And maybe we did get that wrong. Maybe 100 pages per semester is not a number students can live with. But that’s not locked in concrete.”

Will the administration revisit that decision?

“Absolutely,” says Mercurio. “We’ll monitor the volume, we’ll be able to tell how many students max out their quota, and when.”

And what would be the timeline for that reevaluation?

“We need to give it a semester or two before we reexamine,” Mercurio says. “Then we’ll ask the question: did we provide adequate resources?”

Jessica Ullian can be reached at jullian@bu.edu.


42 Comments on At Mugar, “a FitRec for the Mind”

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 12:29 am

    It is a bit annoying that BU, like most universities, has dramatically decreased the number of free prints. However, I definitely think that the improvements in Mugar are well worth the loss in print quota. Mugar has been in need of renovation for quite some time.

    Well done, BU!

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 6:50 am

    This was DUMB

    Common? Are you serious? You wasted 2.5 million on revamping something that already existed? 111 Cummington was a fine facility where I could print whenever I wanted. Mugar is now a loud cluster where huge lines wait to print from their inadequate quota.

  • Jon on 09.04.2009 at 7:53 am

    Well, maybe we should give professors a semester or two of not assigning 300+ pages of documents that need to be printed and read for every class and see if it works.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 8:13 am

    Profs need to stop assigning 100’s of pages a week to print out then… because there is no way I am paying BU 12 cents per page after my quota is done, nor am I paying for that ink and paper. My job was to pay 54,000 for BU this year, a high print quota is expected, especially when you are a journalism and sociology major.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 8:38 am

    Printing needs faculty support

    While I agree with many that 100 pages (apparently being referred to as sheets) is very limited, I feel strongly that faculty and thier departments should heed this change. Perhaps returning to the by gone age of hand outs for content the faculty feels we just must have in hard copy.

    Another alternative is to expand the media services resources on campus. I’ve taken classes where the professor projected lecture notes rather than asking all 40+ students to walking with pages 15 – 40 printed just so can follow along.

    Finally, we the students gave to show and shoulder some responsibility. I feel that it is quite reasonable to use a laptop in class to take notes, follow lecture material, and other on-task things. However, that means restaining ourselves from facebook and Twitter updates during class. I know i’m not paying this tuition just so i can sneak a chat in during class.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 9:06 am

    printing limit...unfair / other cost saving alternatives

    Printing is a basic academic tool that should not be so drastically limited to 100 pages. Let’s be reminded that high quality academics is why many parents sacrifice much to send their students to BU.
    Perhaps ResNet might consider double-sided printing as both a cost saving and greener alternative. On a broader level, perhaps BU might consider limiting some of the free swag given out throughtout many activities.While I do agree that give-aways create positive good energy and do not suggest they be eliminated, they coild be scaled back in an effort to restore a higher limit on printing, a basic academic tool…let’s remember why we chose BU.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 9:28 am

    Mugar looks fabulous

    The library looks fantastic. And it’s a pleasure to use the new machines! I don’t miss 111 at all—who wants to study in a basement?

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 9:45 am

    I am so glad that there’s been some renovation at Mugar! I’ve been waiting to see Mugar renovated for years! The library should be the pillar of a campus, not a depressing mine shaft. Can we now renovate the rest of the library, please?

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 9:49 am

    Why wait?

    Why “give it a semester or two before” they reevaluate whether or not students are exceeding their print quotas? Do they not already have that information from the past couple of years? Or, since this new policy is such a big issue among students, why not email out a simple survey? Obviously the number of pages students will be printing will decrease, because they will be forced to print less due to the unreasonable cost. They need to ask themselves now if BU is “providing adequate resources”, not in a couple semesters from now.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 9:53 am

    Not in the best interest of the students

    This is clearly not in the best interest of the students. You say that 95% of students now come in with laptops, what happens now to the other 5% ? Now there is no 24 hour computer access which makes it difficult for students with a busy schedule to accomplish daily tasks like checking e-mail, writing papers, doing research, etc. all very necessary things for a college student. in addition, taking away resnet labs makes this very inconvenient for busy students that are used to making the most of their limited time.

    It may be easier for BU to manage all the computing and IT from one building, but this does not make sense in a practical way. There are thousands upon thousands of students now vying for a spot in Mugar. This is inefficient for students who do not have computers, or for students who just need to do a quick check online. Not everyone carries around his or her laptop and not everyone owns a laptop.

    In reference to the print quota I believe that this is an error on behalf of BU. If the faculty that proposed this idea ever took a look at what professors ask of students in terms of printing articles, drafts of papers, etc. they would surely see the impossibilty of 100 pages being adequate. I understand that a student could pay for more printing but s/he should not have to. We already pay for textbooks and other materials for class. Double-siding would save paper if that is actually the worry.

    The impression I get since my first year here is that BU sucks as much money as they can out of you. The facilities here are becoming less and less about the students and more about “cost cuts” and then spending money on frivolous things. A loud and crowded study spot is not what students need or want. To walk from Danielsen or West in the middle of the frigid winter to get to a computer that may not even be available, to make the most of our education, to even do what is required, is just not right.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 10:04 am

    two major faults

    First, limiting printing amount is to impose that burden on students who pay huge amount of tuition. If the school wants to cut the printing service, they must cut down tuition. Besides IT printing center has less students working now (it was used to be four, but now only two). Otherwise, this is a kind of dictatorship, which manipulates student’s budget and academic enviornment. We want clearer budget executive.
    Second, the printing service takes more time – more time of students, not the university. It might decrease the university’s energy, but it increases students’ energy including time consuming. So, it is clear that the university takes a huge advantage of students by burdening their consumption on students.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 10:05 am


    I cannot fathom how anyone can take their claim of “going green” seriously. If there wasn’t money in it, it never would have happened. To imply that a private university is not in the business of making money is absolutely foolish. Drastically diminishing the print quota is a great way for them not to have to spend money on paper, not save the environment. Cutting out all of the other computer labs means they don’t have to pay someone to babysit them when they’re open. If we’re paying all this money to go here, don’t you think we should be able to get at least a few perks?

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 10:09 am


    Seriously? Did I just hear a BU admin admit that a decision may have been a poor choice??? Wow!
    I have two problems with the print quota decision – BU uses “going green” as an excuse when it wants to do something unfavorable, because people(especially liberal students) will rarely argue. But if BU were actually committed to energy efficiency, there are so many more effective changes that could be made. Secondly, once again, BU shows a lack of communication skills. Instead of emailing out to professors about the decision (or students for that matter), BU announces unfavorable decisions on BU Today or their own website and hopes word spreads through word of mouth – probably to avoid more immediate, concentrated backlash. This is a major decision that everyone should have been better informed about, especially faculty. Faculty are still putting up 300+ pages on Blackboard under the mistake idea that it’s free for us – some figure it’s therefore cheaper than making us buy the book.
    Beyond that, Mugar’s computer cluster is a poorly designed maze – it’s impossible for students to look in every crevice where a computer has been plopped down, so there’s a long line as usual for the computers in the front. Cummington had computers in neat rows and it was easy to see when one had freed up and therefore, rarely had a line. It’s just poorly designed.
    I also understand their motivation behind putting computers in Mugar, but at the same time, what university the size of BU does not have a 24/7 study lounge with computer/print access, even if it’s just a few machines.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 10:40 am


    This really pisses me off. Going green are we??? More like the university is saving some green. This is ridiculous. I am pretty sure from what I have been reading above is that every Boston University student is dissatisfied with this “new improvement”. 100 pages??? that won’t last me a month. But I think I have a solution. How about President Brown simply pays to reopen the Resnet labs himself. GOD, and I love how the university is trying to justify itself.

  • Jon on 09.04.2009 at 10:57 am


    Okay, so let me get this straight: I have to come up with over $50,000 a year to attend this school, and the school decides that I can’t print more than 100 sheets. And not only that, they charge an absolutely ridiculous premium of $.12 PER PAGE over that limit?

    One or two semesters is a ludicrous time-frame to re-evaluate this quixotic position, but then again, it seems to be the norm that the administration here drags their feet on anything that might reduce profits.

    Learning, Virtue and Piety?

    More like Highway Robbery, Profiteering, and Selfishness.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 11:00 am

    Why give it "a semester or

    Why give it “a semester or two”? Some of us are seniors and won’t be around to see the print quota go up again. We’ve poured money into this school for 3 years and look, see where our money goes? To $2.5 million dollar study areas, fancy columns to identify the buildings (oh, and they’re lit all night, so how is it we’re “going green” and “saving energy”?), completely new dish sets in dining halls (why can’t you just add to the old dish sets, we don’t care if they mis-match), and new chairs in the Towers dining halls! Especially during poor economic times, I think BU needs to prioritize the improvements to the school based on what truly NEEDS to be done rather than what might look pretty. Functional and practical should always come first.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 11:00 am

    No 24/7 computer access? Sad. When I came to BU my freshmen year I could barely afford tuition and books let alone a computer. My first two years at BU I was dependent on the 24/7 access at the computer lab. I often ended up spending the whole night in the lab working on papers. I think limiting access to computing is really going to hit hard for students who don’t have the financial resources that most BU students do. And the print quota is ridiculous. Even just printing 5 drafts of a 20 pages paper would exhaust your quota. Ridiculous!

  • Arthur on 09.04.2009 at 11:32 am

    Please re-examine some of your implementations

    It is nice to see the first two floors of Mugar being revamped, and equipped with the latest computers to make Mugar a more study-conducive environment. I appreciate the director’s and administrator’s initiative. However, I think that some of the implementations have lost touch with the base by not putting yourself into student’s shoes.

    I agree that students would not know which terminal would be available though the space layout looks fantastic. So, I am not sure whether it is possible to install an indicator showing available terminal.

    As a graduate student, I must say that the print quota is really unrealistic. If I were to take four classes per semester, the amount of materials I have to print for my research, and the papers (drafts and final) I have to write and print must not exceed 125pages per class. If I were to write my thesis or dissertation, the quota would seem outright unrealistic. I am not sure whether the current administrator is able to find out how the previous decision-makers work out the previous quota, but it would be wonderful if you can show us how you work out the 100 quota for undergrad and 500 quota for postgrad. If going-green is a big concern, please use recycled paper that is of different weight/opacity/brightness than the one we are currently using. Double-printing is definitely a way to go green. The use of MyPrint that compels us to click Release button before printing is also an effective way to go green.

    Finally, for any system to work efficiently, it must be open to feedback and the administrators must be ready to make changes promptly, and not wait for two semesters. I am for go-green policy but the implementations you put in place may have sacrificed students’ efficiency and put a halt in the progress BU could gain to move higher up the ranking system. BU aims to be a research-tier university, but the print quota doesn’t match the goal.

  • pathetic on 09.04.2009 at 11:37 am

    Wireless on campus pathetic...

    Besides these changes and all the above complaints, no 24/7 computer service is horrible, takes away a huge resource for students, 100 pages of printing also pathetic, why bother. The wireless situation on campus is also absolutely pathetic, a university like BU who goes on about the digital age as in the above article, should have wireless in every building on campus. That they don’t is absolutely pathetic for a global university in the digital age in a city like Boston, absolutely just third and fourth class, not even second class. For the amount of tuition we pay, absolutely pathetic. Let alone those stupid computers in the library are super slow and you have to wait in line to get your print jobs…once again, pathetic.

  • Joe Clark on 09.04.2009 at 12:13 pm


    First, I would like to thank BU Today for once again doing its job as the propaganda arm of the administration. The up-beat attitude this article takes on such an incredibly absurd story is utterly stupefying.

    As a student, there are two primary issues involved in the recent IT shake-up. The first is the loss of a 24/7 study and print facility. That is not even addressed in this article. Personally, in the last three years I have spent many nights at 111 Cummington writing and researching. It was vital to me in that I needed a place that was well lit and devoid of those distracting beds that wreaked havoc on my study and work habits. Compounding my need for such an area was the fact that having class during the day and then working in the dining hall from 5pm-Midnight made it essentially that I have a place to work after most students had gone to bed. Taking that space away in my final year here will have a significant impact on me and many others. That angle is, of course, ignored entirely in this pathetic article.

    The second issue most students have with the new policy regards the print quota. Never in the article is the question asked why the university thought that reducing free printing by more than 80% would be a good idea. I am a history student and in the two history classes I am taking this semester more than half of our readings have been provided to us online by our professors. This is done with the intent of saving us from the ridiculously steep prices of text books and course packets. The pages for these two classes online easily surpass 100. Indeed, I have had classes where the online reading surpassed 300 pages. This is not the mention the fact that this semester alone, I have been assigned four five-page papers, nine two-page papers, one twenty-page paper, and one fifteen-page paper. For those keeping score, that is approximately 75 pages of written assignments for two classes. Never mind the fact that I am writing a thesis which could easily run to about 60 pages with the requirement that I turn in a rough draft, a final thesis, and three extra copies for my thesis defense. At the extortionate rate of 12 cents per page for every page over the quota, my thesis alone could wind up costing me $24.

    What I don’t understand is why it will take a semester or two to see the problem. Assuming they had the capacity, which I am sure they did, could they not have just reviewed how many students printed more than 100 pages a semester in the past? Why was this not done?

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 1:37 pm

    What A Crock

    The reputation that precedes BU is most definitely better than what BU deserves. As a junior in ENG, who has considered leaving since my first semester here, I am horribly disappointed yet again by the administration. If I didn’t have the Ingalls study lounge I don’t know what I would do when I needed overnight access to a computer. I should have never came to school here. BU is like a hot blond that you can’t leave, no matter how many times she’s embarrassed and harassed you in front of your friends

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 1:43 pm

    Once again BU demonstrated utter and complete Stinginess

    It’s amazing that the administration can try to spin this in a positive way. Don’t tell me that you honestly believe that you should deprive students of a safe, well-lit, 24-hour study and work space because “the world of technology has changed incredibly,” Mercurio. I can’t believe you can make that argument with a straight face. Aren’t you embarrassed? Mercurio, you’re seriously out of touch with your own university. You know absolutely nothing about the realities of being a student. Do you have any idea what it’s like to have to work on a paper all night? I mean, it’s not even like you’re offering an alternate 24-hour workspace. It’s pathetic that our library isn’t 24 hours. Even if books can’t be checked out for 24 hours, at least one floor of the facility should still be open for students to study in. What kind of world-class university is this? Additionally, placing a 100-page limit on student printing? That’s just about the only perk that BU students get. It’s not like the administration will ever do anything free for the students, like have a concert or something (which every other school does). When was the last time someone famous was invited to campus to perform/meet with students for free? Never. BU wants a nickel and a dime for everything, so of course they’ll charge something obscene like $40. Printing was just about the only free service that we had.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 1:54 pm

    waste of money

    – 100 page print limit is way too low — I agree with other students, this won’t work unless the faculty are forced to change! I don’t even have the option of printing from home much of the time — prof’s are used to posting materials for class less than an hour before! The only option you have is to print in the library.

    – laptops: the poster who suggested it is reasonable for students to carry laptops and take notes on them is crazy. Aside from the added weight, most people do not have the battery life in a laptop to last through all classes, and classrooms don’t have the electrical capacity for us. And this of course doesn’t help students who don’t have one!

    – I was appalled to read a previous article on the posh living quarters available to students, and the one quoted who used student loans to pay for living there — what a waste!
    But of course BU makes money on all this

  • Anonymous Library Person on 09.04.2009 at 1:56 pm

    computer use in academic libraries

    Can we zoom in on the photos to see how many of the students are working on something clearly “academic” and how many aren’t?

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 2:42 pm

    The unfortunate part of these discussions is that the administration will continue to ignore the students’ valid comments. Under the pretense of doing what is best for us, BU continues to pour money into unnecessary improvements that it hopes will make the campus more impressive to prospective students – like the glowing pillars, without which I believe all of us found ourselves quite capable of getting to class. These additions do nothing but sweep the dirt under the carpet and frankly, I find the blatant waste of our money disrespectful.

    The administration can be sure that prospective students and their families will be made aware of what actually goes on here.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 2:44 pm

    A Step In the Right Direction...

    I commend the university administration for making some tough decisions and making a step in the right direction.

    Our print quotas before were absolutely ridiculous. No one should have an unlimited print quota. This new print quota forces students to choose wisely what they print.

    The reason why this sudden change is so offensive to so many students is they don’t understand how to read on a computer. I was floored to read in the other comments how many people print all the articles their professors assign them. What a ridiculous waste of resources. There are so many computer programs available (Skim for mac, Adobe Reader) that allow you to read all of those articles on your computer and even make annotations and highlights.

    Where the administration went wrong is by not providing students and professors an education in these and other programs. And easing the university into providing a paperless education.

    The other thing that it would be wise for the University to implement is providing printing packages. For example, students can buy more pages above their printing quota at the beginning of the semester for less than the exorbitant $0.12 a page.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 3:19 pm

    My choice now hurts my students

    I am a graduate student lecturer who thought that I was helping reduce costs for my students by putting articles online for them. Now, I learn that they will run out of free printing after about one month of classes. This is absolutely ridiculous and clearly the administration is completely disconnected from the needs students and faculty in this university. This printing quota must be changed immediately or students will probably just not do the reading! The renovations in Mugar were definitely not worth the hassle this is now creating for undergrads, graduates and faculty.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 3:37 pm

    These overpaid university execs are full of crap. I’d offer to help them clean it up, but I regrettably have only 90 squares of toilet paper left for the semester.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 4:01 pm

    I’d like to know how many undergraduate students were on the committee that made these decisions. It’s odd that the students who pay to be here are being forced to pay to print, while the VPs and their staffs in the countless administrative offices, who are being paid to be here, are free to print whatever they wish. I’d like to see university employees and offices charged $0.12 per page before students. And I wish they would not pretend that this is about anything other than money.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 4:02 pm


    I agree that cutting the print quota was a sort of a boneheaded thing to do, but the way the system was set up in the first place was flawed. Artificially representing the quota in dollars made me feel like I was paying for paper that I wasn’t going to use because I had invested in my own printer. Since the dollar amounts weren’t “real”, that meant I couldn’t waive it like a sports pass. Having different pricing options for different printers was unnecessarily confusing. Freshman year I don’t think I used any of my print quota which meant the University was making some sort paper gain on my refusal to waste time going to a resnet lab with awkwardly slow computers. I like that they have gone with a set page amount now, but it seems silly that they would cut the page allowance especially when there are many people who don’t even use all their print quota. I started using my print quota when I started having to print out poorly scanned pdfs of books where there was more black ink than bare paper. If professors require a lot of printing, then the print quota should fairly reflect that to students that need to use BU’s printers. The one thing they have done right is setting up network printers so students don’t have to waste their time by finding an open resnet computer and waiting for it to start up. 111 Cummington was a terrible place for a computer lab, so it doesn’t surprise me that they closed it. That said, they should have replaced it with something of equal size instead of adding a beehive in Mugar. Getting rid of a 24 hour computer lab doesn’t make sense for student body of this size.

  • Anonymous on 09.04.2009 at 4:08 pm

    Fire any one of these people and we’ll have saved enough money to pay for everyone’s printing. I’m sure 95% of the students would not notice they were gone.


  • Anonymous on 09.05.2009 at 1:03 am

    BU has lost touch with it's students

    Although I appreciate that the university is trying to update the technology, I find it kind of incredible that they are so out of touch with the needs of the students. While Mugar is less of an eye sore and that is nice, I’d much rather have the technology set up that we had last year if it meant being able to print class materials without the new migraine that BU has created. As a psychology major I am expected to print long journal articles for research/ class discussion… One of my other classes has a 130 page reader to print this semester too! A personal printer cannot easily handle this length of many class required documents. The main reason I used the BU computer facilities was because it was one less thing to have to worry about. Now I’ll be hauling my ass to kinkos with all of my files on a flash drive- and this is all school related printing! It really adds insult to injury that BU is ignoring the feelings of students and trying to frames this all positively. As I am a senior by the time they fix this I’ll be gone.

  • Anonymous on 09.05.2009 at 10:09 am

    In response to the comment by Absurd, what is your major, and what two classes are these?

  • Anonymous on 09.05.2009 at 11:11 am

    A suggestion...

    I think MyPrint is a great idea. That will prevent people to accidentally print on somebody else (who forgot to log out) account and end up the person who want the output don’t get it and the person who get the output don’t want it.

    Well, if 100 sheets is too low, what is the magic number? Is 1000 sheets still too low or people will start become wasteful? An English major and a Math major might have different needs for printing. I just can’t see why a part-time student and a full-time should both get 100 sheets.

    How about a system where every student starts with 100 sheets, if you are a senior, you have 200 sheets add on top of it, if you are a graduate student, you get 400 more, if you take a writing class, you have 300 sheets more but if you are taking a math class you will only get 200 sheets more. Any sheets above that then start using convenience points.

  • Anonymous on 09.06.2009 at 5:31 pm

    It sounds like everybody’s pissed off and we need a good old fashioned protest. Would anyone else be interested in getting a group started that is willing to take some action?

  • Anonymous on 09.07.2009 at 7:14 pm

    I’m a recent alum, and I can’t believe that the university spent $2.5 million for this “renovation” when the space at Cummington was perfectly fine — kudos to the library for supposedly being open until 2 a.m. now, but that still doesn’t make up for the loss of Cummington, not to mention the print quota. Get a financial planner, BU, because after this and StuVi2, you’re going to need it.

  • Anonymous on 09.07.2009 at 7:25 pm

    increase print quota now

    They increased the tution and decreased the print quota and increased the price of each print out. This is just ridiculous. They should not need 2 semesters to decide if the print quota is too less. they can just review the records of the past 2 semesters and see that their decision to reduce the print quota is harmful to our quality of education.
    The new quota is not even enough to print stuff required for 1 class let alone it being enough for a full time student.

  • Anonymous on 09.08.2009 at 10:24 am

    First, they cut us down to 100 sheets per semester. Then, when you try to print, it doesn’t work. Do you hear that BU? That’s the sound of your alumni participation vanishing. MyPrint is a horrible system and needs to be fixed ASAP. And good luck getting any money out of me to build StuV 3 or increase President Brown’s salary.

  • Anonymous on 09.09.2009 at 10:56 am

    MyPrint & Print Allocation...

    Although it is a bit inconvenient in the beginning but nevertheless MyPrint is a good idea. It helps to cut down unnecessary waste when somebody accidentally print on an account who forgot to log off and end up the person who wants the output don’t get it and the person who gets the output don’t want it.

    If 100 sheets is too low then what is the magic number? Is 2000 sheets still too low or it will start getting wasteful? Maybe a more logical approach to printing allocation should be based on individual academic requirements. For example, everybody starts with 100 sheets. If the student is taking Creative Writing class, 500 sheets will be added while only 100 sheets will be added if taking a Computer Science class. A graduate student or senior should start with a higher allocation etc.

  • Anonymous on 09.09.2009 at 11:02 pm

    The time for change is now.

    Despite the fact that MyPrint was a new system, I think its implementation of how documents are printed is a good one. However, I am utterly appalled at the Print Quota. I have 7 papers to write this semester, and I know that the current number allotted would not even suffice. 4 of my classes have material to be printed for class each week, many of those documents ranging from 10-40 pages, or even more. The Print labs are absolutely necessary. It is ridiculous to expect us to either read the documents on our computers or have us expend even more money on printers. We already pay a lot to come here, and tuition keeps on increasing every year. Many of us are also facing the effects of the economy. Parents are losing jobs; my own mother is also in danger of being laid off. We don’t have the kind of money to afford all of our needs; some of us live by the paycheck and even that is hard to come by. By BU limiting the quota to such an awfully low number is just a slap in the face. It is a resource we all use because of how necessary it is to our education. Not having my documents in hand negatively impacts my education, and most likely many others’ as well. This decision clearly shows the lack of students’ needs. The administration does not recognize how essential the printing system is to us. They are not students; they do not know how we operate, and therefore, they shouldn’t make such drastic conditions for us. The change was implemented so drastically over the summer that not many could have reacted to it until now. If you also had $2.5M to redecorate Mugar, then you definitely had the money to keep our printing system this year. Losing the 24-hour resource was also a very poor choice.
    I don’t have a semester or two to wait for you to exact changes. I have two or three weeks at max, many other students have less. I am a senior, and the time for change is now. You did get the print quota wrong, so get out there and fix it.

  • Anonymous on 11.05.2009 at 7:46 pm


    If these “state of the art” changes were suppose to save BU so much money, please tell me why on 11/5/09 none of the scanners in the print and scanner office are working. The student employees in the room nor the IT desk can’t figure out why and appear not to care if the scanners are not working. The least BU could do is keep the equipment working.

  • Matt on 09.02.2010 at 5:49 am

    Library looks great!

    Amidst the myriad of nevagtive comments on here – the majority of which I do agree with – I welcome the renovation and am personally glad to see the library in its new outfit. Lets face it, it was sorely needed. With this transformation we can now view our library as the foundation of our school and take full advantage of its services. Personally, i’m looking forward to using the new machines.
    Cheers, Matt C.

Post Your Comment

(never shown)