Letter to the Editor: A response to ‘Breaking the culture of sleep deprivation’

To the editor,

We in Tisch Library are committed to providing a welcoming, inclusive environment for the Tufts community. We appreciate and share your concerns about student health and wellness addressed in your Oct. 23 editorial on “the culture of sleep deprivation.” Balancing work and life can be challenging (for us as well!). However, it’s for precisely this reason that many university libraries — including Tisch, during final exams — are open 24 hours.

The library is here to serve the greater Tufts community. We strive to meet the needs of a diverse group of students, which includes early birds and not just night owls, graduate students with all kinds of schedules, people with work and family obligations and students enrolled in online courses. In addition, we are dedicated to supporting Tufts’ faculty, staff, and researchers with a variety of information needs.

One of the most frequent requests we get at Tisch is to expand our hours to accommodate the variety of schedules and preferences of our community, and to meet the growing need for a safe, quiet place to be on campus. The library staff recognizes that not all students at Tufts have the same schedule, or the same pressures. In fact, we are working towards being able to open earlier on Saturdays and Sundays to meet these requests.

We certainly don’t want any expansion of library hours to be interpreted as encouraging sleep deprivation. We continuously strive to better understand how use of the library fits into the lives of our students, faculty and staff, so we can provide a wide range of resources and services that contribute to success. Yes, we want you to take care of yourself. But we understand that, for some, self-care and stress reduction may be helped by having the ability to work quietly in the library early in the morning.


Dorothy Meaney

Director, Tisch Library