Mary Heinzman, Library Director
My office is on the third floor, and from time to time I look over the balcony to see what’s happening in the rest of the library. One thing that’s interesting to watch is the activity around the main printers on first floor. All the computers on first floor are networked to the two printers in the center of the atrium. At times there are lines of people waiting for their printing to appear. If one person happens to pick up the wrong print job, there is a moment of panic before someone else rushes off to print the job again. At other times I’ve noticed that people become impatient if their print jobs aren’t the first ones processed. They don’t like to wait. Some people have even left, with the brief explanation of “I have to get to class”.
What’s really interesting is the amount of printing that is never picked up. It appears that some things get printed out more than once, but the owner only picks up one copy, leaving the rest behind. Sometimes I think things get printed by mistake as well, or the person doing the printing changes his/her mind and never picks it up. Regardless of the reason, there is often a large pile of unclaimed printing.
As a direct result, the Library’s expenditures for paper and toner have gone up considerably this year. I’ve been exploring the options of ways to control printing costs because I don’t see the trend reversing. What ideas do you have to manage the huge amount of printing that goes on in the Library? How can we reduce our impact on the environment, and yet still support our students’ needs? Send me your ideas to HeinzmanMaryB@sau.edu .