Relaxation Room @ Penn’s Biomedical Library

Penn is committed to the heath and well-being of all students, faculty and staff. Dr. Dubé is the University of Pennsylvania’s inaugural Chief Wellness Officer. The Wellness at Penn website provides eight categories of wellness:

Adapted from the Wellness Wheel of SAMHSA (the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of the US Department of Health and Human Services)
https://www.wellnessatpenn.com/

On April 25, 2019, Amanpreet (Aman) Kaur, Community Health and Engineering Librarian at the Biomedical Library, and her team’s idea of “Weekly Themed Walks” was selected as one of the finalists for Penn Wellness’ Big Pitch event, which invited students, staff and faculty to pitch their ideas for innovative wellness programming for the community.

Aman has also developed the Relaxation Room at the Biomedical Library:

Relaxation Room by Amanpreet Kaur
Penn Libraries

On May 30th, Aman provided us with a tour of the Relaxation Room in support of the Sow, Nurture and Grow: Cultivate Your Purpose theme of this year’s SALT (Student Affairs Leadership Team) conference at Penn:

  • There are spaces for physical, intellectual and spiritual relaxation, including yoga mats, chair yoga and prayer mat.
  • There are spaces for drawing, coloring, sensorial manipulatives, puzzles and even an Operation game!
  • There are relaxing sounds stations where you can scan QR codes with your cellular device and listen with a headphone.
  • There is an adjacent room that can be accessed for more interactional activities.

And, of course, get some studying and research done before or after your relaxation, as the Biomedical Library continues to be a great Study Spot at Penn!

For more information about the Biomedical Library, also see our prior blog: Study Spots: Biomed Library.

By Staff Writer: Min Derry, Learning Instructor, Weingarten Learning Resources Center.

Study Spots: Annenberg Library

Kemuel Benyehudah

Previously, a Penn GSE RWL Masters Student, Kemuel Benyehudah, now a PhD student at the Higher Education Division of Penn GSE, wrote a wonderful blog featuring the Annenberg Library as a recommended Study Spot. Check out his Blog here. We have added some updated photos of the library, below.

If you like a smaller, cozier and more intimate study environment that feels a bit more manageable than larger libraries, with all of the benefits of book and resources pick up and returns, but more importantly, a wonderfully dedicated Reference staff, experience the Annenberg Library!

Penn’s Annenberg School for Communication has a unique, eclectic and critical ethos that is distinctly interdisciplinary. You will enjoy the student lounge right outside the library as much as the library itself. Also, check out the artwork as well as their regularly featured public events, such as guest speakers, movies and other presentations.

By Staff Writer, Min Derry, OLR Learning Fellow.

Study Strategies: Spring Clean Your Academic Life

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While it might not feel like spring outside yet, it is definitely around the corner. Spring break is over, and this semester is already halfway complete. Before we become busy with spring social commitments, with enjoying the nice weather (it’s coming, I promise!), and with beginning to study for finals, this point in the semester can be a great time to do some academic spring cleaning.

Sound new to you? Often, we often only think of spring cleaning as a chore we complete with our dorms, houses, or apartments, but actually this can be a great point in the semester for taking time to reorganize your academic life. Spending a few hours clearing out old papers and organizing important files can help you feel recharged and ready to take on the rest of the semester.

So turn on some music, open up the curtains to let some sunlight in, and get ready to get organized. Here are some suggestions for how to spring clean your academic life:

  • Take some time to go through your folders (or the paper crumpled at the bottom of your backpack).
    • Recycle the papers you don’t need anymore.
    • If papers will be useful or helpful later in the semester or in future classes, place them in a labeled folder.
  • Organize the files on your computer.
    • Make sure you have created file folders for each of your courses this semester. Sort your files accordingly. Make sure to add any downloaded files that will be useful.
    • Delete the computer files you no longer need.
    • If you are reading a lot of PDFs, make sure you are keeping them organized for easy reference when you are writing future essays. Tools like OneNote, Notability, or Zotero can be great for helping to keep PDFs organized.
  • Sort out your Inbox!
    • This task can be dreaded, but now can be a good time to take charge of your email if it’s gotten out of hand.
    • Delete unread or unneeded messages.
    • Place important emails in their applicable folders
    • Take yourself email chains that you don’t need or send them directly all an advertisement folder so they aren’t clogging up your main inbox.
  • Take stock of your books and textbooks.
    • If you’re like me and you have too many books, make sure you’ve made any returns to the library.
    • See if you can sell back any books on Amazon or another site.
    • Donate books you no longer need to on-campus donation sites or a local library.
  • Review your planner and/or schedule.
    • Make sure your spring commitments are updated.
What else do you do to recharge and reorganize during the spring? Let us know!

Remember, instructors at Weingarten are here to help with any of your academic needs! Call 215 – 573 – 9235 to make an appointment. Or, stop by Monday thru Friday from 12pm to 3pm and Tuesday and Wednesday nights from 4pm  to 7pm for walk-in appointments.

By: Kelcey Grogan, Weingarten Learning Instructor and Learning Fellow

Study Spots: Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center Edition

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I know what you’re thinking. Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center is not a secret study spot. I’m here to let you in on a little VP secret: there are two new spaces within our beloved library that opened this fall. The hours for these new rooms are the same as most of the rest of VP:

  • Monday through Thursday, 8:30 a.m. to midnight
  • Friday 8:30 a.m. – 9 p.m.
  • Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
  • Sunday 10 a.m. – midnight

Read on to find out more about these great new spaces!

Moelis Family Grand Reading Room (first floor)

  • Noise level: Silent
  • Perks: The swivel recliners in the front of the room are perfect for study breaks.
    • This room truly is grand. A beautiful cloth tapestry lines one wall, with floor-to-ceiling windows surrounding the other sides of the room.
    • This room also features plush blue chairs at every table to make your study time a comfortable experience.
  • The Moelis Family Grand Reading Room is sound-proof and totally silent. If you’re looking for a space to really buckle down and focus, this is your spot.

The Class of 1937 Memorial Reading Room (fifth floor)

  • Noise level: Quiet
  • Perks: Comfortable seating in front, study carrels in back. Perfect for any occasion!
  • The Class of 1937 Memorial Reading room is now a card-access room designed to meet the needs of graduate students.
  • This newly redesigned room features space for both independent and group study, and there is a lactation room available as well.
  • In addition to the new features, this room is also home of football memorabilia from the class of ’37. The glass display case features three footballs and several uniforms that give a feel for what live at Penn was like 80 years ago.

Class of 37

While you’re over at the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center checking out the new spaces, don’t forget about our other favorite VP spots including:

Each separate space at the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center has different advantages, so make sure to check them all out to decide which one works best for you.

By Staff Writer: Cassie Lo, Learning Fellow & Instructor

 

Finals Feature: Super-Secret Study Spots

Looking for a new place to study for your final exams or write those final papers? Never fear – I’m here to help you find a location for success!

Biddle Law Library

3501 Sansom St.

Hours: 7:30 a.m. – 11:45 p.m. through May 5, 8 a.m.-7:45 p.m. daily through May 10th

Noise level: Low

Perks: Quiet outdoor space with tables and chairs where you can enjoy the warm weather

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If you’re trying to avoid the hustle and bustle of Van Pelt during finals week, you should definitely check out the Biddle Law Library. The Law Library is beautiful, well-lit and extremely quiet. The library itself has two levels, with the main level serving as a more public and collaborative space. Head upstairs for more isolated study time at individual tables and carrels. If the weather is nice, make sure to visit the outside tables and chairs that are a perfect change of scenery from the stacks of books inside.

The Law Library also has an extensive collection of over one million primary and secondary sources. Its archival collection houses personal papers from famous lawyers and judges. This library is an excellent research site for Law students, but also for undergraduate students who are studying Political Science, PPE or History.

The Biddle Law Library is a great destination for Quakers who crave a quiet study atmosphere. If you’re unable to make it over there before the end of the semester, it is certainly a place to check out when you get back to campus in August!

Staff Writer: Cassie Lo

Reading: Books & Library

Every semester we all have to buy books. Lots…of…books! Whether they’re for a statistics, literature, or language course they add up, and not just in volume. But that’s usually not the end of the story. You start writing a final paper, you do your research, and you identify the perfect reference book. Most of the time your book is available in the library database–success! But every once in a while you run into the little red minus sign next to the words “Checked out.” E-Z Borrow, Borrow Direct, and Interlibrary Loan (ILL) are three great resources you may consider using. Here are a few scenarios that summarize the benefits of all three systems and provide guidance for using the one most appropriate for you.

I have an assignment due at the end of the month and the book I need is checked out at Penn.
If you’re pressed for time, try using Borrow Direct or E-ZBorrow. Borrow Direct is a rapid book request system that allows you to search a collection of over 60 million volumes through the libraries at Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Harvard, University of Pennsylvania, MIT, Duke, Dartmouth, John Hopkins, Yale and Princeton. If a partnering university has your book it will usually arrive within 3-5 business days. You can also try E-ZBorrow. E-ZBorrow will search for your book in over 60 academic libraries in Pennsylvania and nearby states. If your book is unavailable through both of those mediums, try Interlibrary Loan. ILL takes longer deliver so be sure to adjust the “need by” date on your request to reflect your deadlines.

I need to borrow a book for the semester, should I request it through ILL or Borrow Direct?
Borrow Direct books are loaned out for six weeks at a time, and are non-renewable more than once, a total of 12 weeks. The semester is 14 weeks so this option can leave you in a bit of a crunch, especially at the end of the semester. Try ILL. Most loans range from 2-6 weeks but vary depending on the lending institution and can typically be renewed.

Penn doesn’t own the book I need. I found it on both Borrow Direct and E-ZBorrow but am told that the book is non-requestable. What should I do?
There are some core textbooks that are not available for request on Borrow Direct and E-ZBorrow, such as calculus textbooks. Try placing an ILL request.

Whatever your situation may be, try out these great resources to be connected with your eagerly awaited books. If you know you’ll need a particular book within a specified time frame, plan ahead!

Staff Blogger: Erica Saldivar Garcia

Friday Feature: Super Secret Study Spots

Wondering where you should go this weekend to do your work? I’m here on Fridays to share local study spots that you should definitely check out if you’re on the hunt for that perfect location.

Leon Levy Dental Medicine Library
240 South 40th St.
Hours: Monday-Friday 9-5 p.m. (after hours and weekends are reserved to Dental School students and staff)
Noise level: Low
Perks: They have resources for basic sciences in addition to dental sciences including access to biomedical databases

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At this point in the semester, Van Pelt is filled to the brim with students frantically studying for their midterms. Some people work well in semi-quiet, social spaces, but for those of you who prefer more muted locations, we suggest some of the less-frequented Penn libraries.

For those of you who live around 40th Street, the Leon Levy Dental Medicine Library is the place to be. The library is located within the Robert Schattner Center near the corner of 40th and Locust Streets. Once you show your Penn ID to the security guard at the info desk, ask for someone to point you in the right direction. The library is around several twists and turns within the building, but it is certainly worth the journey!

The library itself is a beautiful sight. The two floors are visible from the entrance, and there are tables on both levels that are perfect for studying by yourself or with a friend. The atmosphere is very calm and you’ll often see Dental students pop in for a quick study session between their classes.

The one downside of this space is that the hours for non-Dental students and staff are very slim, but it is easy to be productive here, even in a small amount of time.

Have a great spot that we should feature on our blog? Comment below and let us know where you study!