Every year, Montrose blossoms in its availability of spaces and places intended for student needs. The stage and court of the Arts and Athletics Center provide practice space for our actresses and athletes; the wide-windowed rooms of the Arts and Environment building allow budding artists and scientists alike to experiment with their materials; and the shiny red microwaves in the cafeteria give students clean, fresh, and reliable devices to heat up their lunches.
In the midst of all these positive advancements, several members of the Class of 2018 noticed something missing. No, it wasn’t some high-tech device needed in the labs, nor a fancy student lounge area—what we saw missing was something much simpler. Montrose needed a library to support Enrichment reading.
These nine seniors—Aine Ford, Ciara Young, Kiran Kottapalli, Emma Lucy, Grace Alyea, Nora Clancy, Elizabeth Ling, Abby Hutner, and myself, Gabby Landry—decided to take on the collection and construction of a library, as well as an online database, for our senior service project. Senior service is a time at the end of senior year, after classes and exams have ended, for each senior to give back to her community in some way. The nine of us had always longed for a library of enticing books; and we want to leave a legacy as the founders of the Montrose Enrichment Reading Library (the Book Nook).
Grace Alyea ‘18 said: “We wanted to create a library to make good books more accessible to the students. Books allow me to travel to different places and stand in other people’s shoes, and I want to help other people have this same experience.”
Emma Lucy ‘18 shared why she joined this project. She said, “I thought it would be a fun experience to collect and organize the books, and it has been so far!”
As we brainstormed as a group and with Mrs. Sneider (our official advisor), Mrs. Baker, Mrs. Elrod, Dr. Bohlin, Mrs. Bowman, and others, our vision evolved. We wanted to create a collection that students would be able to use during the Enrichment period. The project now consists of three main parts: the library itself, an online database, and a student group to maintain the library.
The library itself will make its home in the current Media Center, and be a space complete with bookshelves of available books, computers to view the webpage, and displays of student “reviews and responses” (everything from fan art, poetry responses to a book, and book reviews).
The online database will be a webpage to which students can go to view available books, as well as book reviews and responses. The database will also keep track of the books to ensure that none go missing.
Finally, the student group will be several students in the grades below us who can step up and volunteer to keep the library alive once we establish it. These girls would check in about once a week to maintain shelf order, ensure the books are intact, update reviews and responses, and add new books as donations come in. If you want to become part of the “library legacy,” reach out to any one of the seniors in the group!