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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Alkek Library’s Long Night Against Procrastination facilitates student success

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Coffee, doughnuts and lo-fi music await students in Alkek Library as library staff prepare to host the 12th semiannual Long Night Against Procrastination on Wednesday, Nov. 16.
At the event, students can take advantage of student resources and speak to library staff about procrastination and prepare for finals with the University Writing Center from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. in study rooms 441 and 442.
Donna Dean, Instruction and Outreach Specialist, who coordinates instruction and events at Alkek, has helped run the event for six years. Dean sees the fall Long Night Against Procrastination as a way to motivate students to work on their final projects before Thanksgiving break and finals.
“There’s always staff attending to assist students and guide them if they want help, and then we’re also there to give you space and freedom if you want to do more independent study in the space that we’re in,” Dean said.
The Alkek staff came up with Long Night Against Procrastination in 2014 when they read about an event that went by the same name in Germany. Inspired by the event’s success, the Alkek version would break down the barrier between students and library staff. They also wanted to dedicate a night to accommodate people who visited the library at nighttime.
“We noticed that right near the end of the semester, students need a lot more support because all of the sudden papers are due, finals are coming up and people need research help and they need study buddies even,” Tricia Boucher, open pedagogy and STEM librarian said. “[Long Night Against Procrastination] is set up in such a way that people kind of set a goal for the evening. They work towards that goal, and we’re all kind of there to help each other work towards those goals.”
Boucher was the user experience and psychology subject librarian in 2014 and is one of the only members of the inaugural Long Night Against Procrastination left. Despite this, the event continues at Alkek because it has seen positive reception from student surveys and staff feedback. The event has seen 300 to 400 students turn out in previous years.
Long Night Against Procrastination has evolved since 2014. The event used to be more activity-based with specific times for stretching and breathing exercises, games hosted by organizations and discussions about procrastination. The staff saw big turnouts for those events but realized a greater purpose could be fulfilled by directly helping students with their studies.
“It was really about helping students where they were at, so wherever you’re at in your process, we’re basically sitting here waiting for you to ask for help,” Boucher said.
The activities are still options at Long Night Against Procrastination, but now students can choose between engaging in them or working on their assignments.
Room 441 will offer group study, refreshments and consultations with the Writing Center. Room 442 will be quieter and the lights will be dimmed for students engaging in independent studying. Library staff will walk around both sections attending to students.
The Writing Center, which assists students with things like resumes and research papers, also offers its services at Long Night Against Procrastination.
Amaya Lewis, a theater performance and production senior, works as a writing consultant and is one of a few consultants who represent the Writing Center at Long Night Against Procrastination. She previously volunteered at Long Night Against Procrastination as a consultant in the spring of 2021, holding 15-minute sessions for students instead of the 25 or 50-minute ones usually offered at the Writing Center.
The idea of consulting with more people in less time initially drew her in, but she grew to appreciate Long Night Against Procrastination’s relaxed atmosphere and how it allowed her to help people while also being able to do her own studying.
“I think that’s why I really care for it,” Lewis said. “A lot of academic spaces can feel somewhat intimidating but this one didn’t feel like that. It’s almost like it’s a fun night event that you’re doing with several other college students while you’re working on your homework.”
For eight years, Long Night Against Procrastination has had the purpose of motivating students and staff to interact and help each other. It has brought people together who are experiencing similar feelings of finals approaching the end of the semester while also informing library guests on the resources and services offered at Alkek and Texas State.
“We all procrastinate, we all kind of handle it in different ways and handle stress in different ways, but in the end, we can relate just through the experience of being stressed out and having to finish those assignments,” Dean said.
For more information about events happening at Alkek Library, visit its Twitter @alkeklibrary.

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