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Welcoming Students to Harvard Library

Freshmen were introduced to library spaces and services by staff from across Harvard Library. 


Over 300 incoming students attended the annual Freshman Open House at Lamont Library on August 29 to get an introduction to Harvard’s libraries and the services they offer. Freshmen were welcomed with tours, raffle prizes, and food in an event coordinated around the theme “Lamont & Beyond.” Sixty staff members from across the Harvard Library and FAS pitched in by serving as greeters, tour guides, servers of food, job recruiters, button-making advisers, and more.

Students attending the event were given a keyring light branded with an image of Lamont at night and encouraged to visit the Lamont Café to enter the raffle, pick up a snack, find out about Harvard Library’s User Research Center, and commemorate their experience by making a button with a picture of one of several well-known Harvard alumni, such as Neil deGrasse Tyson, Natalie Portman, and JFK. A representative from the Bureau of Study Counsel, which offers tutoring services to undergraduates, was also on hand in the lobby to provide information and answer questions.

Tours of Lamont ran continuously throughout the two-hour event, guided by staff and students who work in Access Services and the Media Lab in Lamont. They highlighted the areas and collections students are likely to use during the academic year, including the new unified service point at the main desk in the lobby, the Media Lab, Language Resource Center, Collaborative Learning Space, Ginsberg and Donatelli reading rooms, Woodberry Poetry Room, and Farnsworth Room, which houses a collection of leisure reading. “It was exciting to see the freshmen’s enthusiasm for library spaces during the tours,” commented Dominque Luongo, tour leader and Media Lab assistant. “I enjoyed showing off Lamont and all of the library’s resources.”

The Collaborative Learning Space on Level B provided the “…& Beyond” portion of the event. Informational tables were set up to showcase libraries, special collections and services from across campus, including Cabot, Widener, Houghton, Loeb Music, Fine Arts, Tozzer, Baker, Harvard Law School and Schlesinger libraries, the Harvard University Archives, and the Harvard Map Collection, as well as Digital Arts and Humanities Research Computing and Harvard Library Digital Collections. There was also a table that provided information about jobs available to students in the libraries. “This was the largest number of tables we’ve had in the room, but everything looked great and the students seemed interested to visit with us,” said Reed Lowrie, co-chair of the Freshman Open House planning team. “It's the enthusiasm of the volunteers that always makes this event such a resounding success.”

Photos of the event can be found here

Learn more about Lamont Library by visiting its website and viewing this Prezi presentation on its resources.

By Lynn Sayers, Administration and Events Coordinator, Lamont Library.

Published on September 21, 2016.