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Credit: Luke Chen

While many students are at home or working off-campus internships during the summer, over 1,000 undergraduate students stay at Penn to take summer classes or prepare for standardized exams. 

According to some students, reduced library hours during the summer make it difficult for them to find crucial study spaces. 

Though the majority of Penn's libraries retain the same morning opening hours during the summer, many have earlier closing times. In the summer, Van Pelt Library closes at 9 p.m. from Monday to Thursday, with even shorter hours on weekends. During the school year, the library is open until midnight almost every day.


Credit: Julia Schorr

Because of these reduced hours, some students said they had difficulty finding enough time to complete assignments for their summer classes at Penn's libraries or group study spaces. 

Rising Engineering sophomore Abby Stein said that she has trouble finding a quiet study place for the CIS 160 course she's taking this summer.  

“I was studying for a midterm in Huntsman, but when it closed I had to leave," she said. "I found that I had nowhere else to study, as Huntsman was the building open latest.” 

She added that during the school year, she often stayed in libraries much later than their typical summer closing times.

“It’s hard to finish all necessary studying by the time that all the buildings close, and studying at home doesn’t allow me to be as focused," she said.

The hours for Penn libraries during the summer have not changed in recent years, according to Associate University Librarian for User Services & Resource Management Jon Shaw. He added that these hours are chosen by different directors and administrators. 

Shaw said the Biomedical Library does not see the same reduction in hours as other libraries because Penn accommodates students taking the Medical College Admission Test, who often use summer time to study for the exam.

For some students, like rising Engineering sophomore Anushrut Shah, shorter library hours during the summer aren't a concern.

“During the day I’ll go to Van Pelt, but at night I’ll just study in my room,” Shah said. “I don’t really have a problem with Van Pelt summer hours, because I don’t have a reason to study out that late.” 

Shah added that he often studies in his Domus apartment and doesn't find his roommates distracting to his summer coursework.

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