Letter to the Editor: Lit House Changes Defended

Dear Editor,

After last week’s letter regarding the Lit House and its seemingly unfavorable changes, we would like to provide some insight on these issues. Over the past few years the Lit House has undergone many necessary changes – changes we knew would not please everyone. Meetings between student workers, club members, and administrators have been focused on establishing the Lit House’s role on campus. It is not just a study area, but an academic building. Finding the balance between student and academic life has been quite the challenge, but we are working to improve the Lit House’s presence.

As student workers, we know the new furniture is not the most ideal for a study space, but the old furniture needed to go. If you would like more comfortable lounge spots, take a trip to the third floor rooms with new beanbag chairs and computers. As for the cat, our beloved Edith’s passing marked a dark time around the House. New cat-in-residence, Langston, was with us briefly by accident – a stray, and no one else would take him. Though he is no longer at the House, he still resides with former Lit House Assistant Director Kate Bursick, where he is much happier and receives the attention and care we could not provide him. The good news is Director Jehanne Dubrow sometimes has her friendly, adorable dog in the House and you may see him stop by for a visit.

As for the new kitchen rules, there was no other way around them. We’d unlock the House in the morning only to discover messes and other mishaps caused without workers on duty. Continuing in this manner was not in anyone’s best interest. The new rules are safety precautions. The issues the staff faced were gross, to put it bluntly: noodles plastered to the chalk board and lights, coffee mugs full of things that weren’t even liquids, and dirty plates hidden under the couches.

Because of the horrors we’d find in the mornings from late night visitors, we had to enforce time restrictions. Just as well, the budget only allows for Federal Work Study student workers, and while we would love to be able to stay open longer, we simply do not have the funds or help to do so.

Miss Smith is correct: we needed to “enforce a sense of order.”

None of these rules are meant to alienate anyone from the Lit House. On the contrary, we love having students come to visit or hang out! But this is also a two-way street. If you want the House to be lively again, you need to be there. There will be no change if no one comes. We host numerous events, workshops, and club meetings. Come in, grab a book from our in-house library, explore the upper floors, read the posters, make some coffee or tea, talk to the students and professors who wander through. The House is open to everyone and is not exclusive to any particular majors. Our goal is to make the situation better and allow more students to come.

Visit us! We look forward to having you!

Signed,
Katie Sykes ‘13
Abigail Schwartz ‘13
Alissa Vecchio ‘13

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