Former Bethel History and Philosophy major Calvin Konop (’09) has a piece in the new issue of Among Friends, the newsletter of the Friends of the Bethel University Library, in which he explains the history of his love for that library. Now a member of the Friends board, Calvin writes that his initial view of learning — as a hoop to jump through en route to a degree — changed in part thanks to his experience working in the Library:
…I started to see the multitude of resources it possessed, the staff that genuinely cared (and still does care!) about students and their academic growth, and the academically conducive environment. I quickly started to warm up to the idea of learning. Soon the obligation of flipping open a book became a treasured opportunity; the idea of going to class to get a grade changed to sitting in on a lecture that gave me new and valuable insights into my field of study and beyond!
After graduating, Calvin joined the Friends of the Library, a group that seeks “to enhance the quality of the library collections, facilities, and services by encouraging gifts and estate planning, awareness of library resources, and participation in library programs.” The Friends sponsor talks and other events, fund scholarships (including a research prize competition in which our students have regularly done well), and help add books, DVDs, and other resources to the library’s collections.
Our department has long had a close connection with the Friends: History professor Diana Magnuson is a former president and currently serves as the secretary of the Friends board; its treasurer, Bethel librarian Earleen Warner, is one of our alums; in addition to Calvin, the current board also includes Jim Johnson (professor emeritus of History) and Carole Cragg (a reference librarian whose specialties include History — she’s also married to our own Kevin Cragg). Several of our faculty and alumni are members.
If you’d like to join them as a contributing member of the Friends of the Library, click here.