Raynor Library’s starts “Passport Program” contest

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Raynor Library’s starts “Passport Program” contest

Raynor Library starts a contest for students to get their own private study room with snacks.

Raynor Library starts a contest for students to get their own private study room with snacks.

Photo by Andrew Himmelberg

Raynor Library starts a contest for students to get their own private study room with snacks.

Photo by Andrew Himmelberg

Photo by Andrew Himmelberg

Raynor Library starts a contest for students to get their own private study room with snacks.

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Since the beginning of the semester, Raynor Memorial Library started a contest called the “passport program,” where students can check into the library using a ‘passport’ phone app and scan a poster, all for a chance to win a personal study room with snacks during finals week.

Kate Otto, a research and instruction services librarian at Raynor, said it is easy to enter the competition.

“All you need to do is download a QR code reader (on a cellphone) and scan the code on the poster at the Raynor information desk and then fill out the short form it brings up,” she said.

Otto added students can scan into the raffle once a week in hopes to win the study room. The room is nightly and, available from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m.

“Students scan in with their name and email, and answer a few questions about the library, or even some random ones, like “what’s your favorite book?” Otto said.

Otto said that the raffle serves multiple purposes.

“It’s mutually beneficial. Students have an opportunity to become more comfortable with the library and we learn more about what students are interested in,” Otto said.

Besides the immediate draw for food and a quiet study place, the staff at the library started the passport as an effort to get students more acclimated to the various programs they have to offer, Otto said, adding that the library “is more than just a bunch of books.”

Eric Kowalik, an instructional designer for the library, said the passport program is aimed toward a specific audience.

“The program is geared toward first-year students, but all students are welcome to participate,” Kowalik said.

Molly Larkin, an information assistant at the library, said students should explore the program.

“That’s an awesome prize, I mean what student wouldn’t want that?,” Larkin said.

The idea for the study room has circulated since March 2018. Otto said that many people worked on the idea of the program.

“It was a group effort from the staff,” she said. “I went to a conference at a different university and we developed a task force charged with implementing the program… based off of similar programs.”

The program has been going for over three weeks now, and Kowalik said that the passport program is off to a good start.

The program is getting some buzz. Within the first week, 14 people already participated,” Kowalik said.

The library has plans to continue similar contests in the future, depending on how the passport program goes, which may include a scavenger hunt, Kowalik said.

Otto said that there are multiple events that they are looking to host with the Alumni Memorial Union. 

“We’ve been talking about programing, trivia nights and other things,” Otto said. “There are lots of places in the library to hosts these events.”

Otto said that the library is always seeking to improve the services the library has to offer.

“As a librarian, we really want the library to be more relevant to students,” Otto said.

 “The staff is here to serve students. If students have ideas, we want to hear them.”

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