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Major library renovations could be coming to South Dakota universities

 Library at the South Dakota School of Mines.
Library at the South Dakota School of Mines. (KOTA)
Published: Mar. 3, 2020 at 10:10 PM CST
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The South Dakota Joint Committee on Appropriations approved major renovations to libraries at both Black Hills State University and the South Dakota School of Mines.

The project at the Devereaux Library in Rapid City will cost about $5 million with most of the money coming from Maintenance and Repair budget funds.

The committee approved this project in a vote of 16 to 2 on March 2.

The interim provost of School of Mines explained the impacts House Bill 1046 would have if it moves forward.

"What we're looking at is really a renovation that would be focused on student success so moving our entire student success center over to the library would be one main level of the library, we would have career services move over there as well, testing, tutoring, our peer mentoring programs would all move over there so it's really focused on ensuring that the students have the tools available to make them successful in their academics," said Lance Roberts, interim provost for the South Dakota School of Mines.

Roberts said this renovation would help with recruitment, and retention of students.

The last renovation was years ago and added an academic department to the library, while improving ADA accessibility.

However, this potential renovation is more focused on creating a central location for student services.

In Spearfish, the E.Y. Berry Library would benefit from $9.3 million in renovation projects.

"We're seeing this really all across the country that libraries are really being reinvented, they're being re-purposed, many of them are being used for student success, but just also how are they being better utilized for reference materials as well, so it was really great to see that Black Hills State had a very similar idea," Roberts said.

Roberts said with this renovation, School of Mines could put a math lab in the library and build its use into the curriculum.