With Love and LCDs, from the Class of 2011

Seniors refurbish the library’s Digital Media Lab.

By Gillian Smith ’11

This year, the graduating class selected their class gift to be Phase II of the construction of the Digital Media Lab, located on the third floor of the College’s library.

Phase I of the Digital Media Lab was completed in February 2011 and included a newly designed room with three Mac computers and scanners, and technology that had been funded by the provost’s office, installed in a space designed for students.

Phase II is a remodeling and restructuring of the space. The lab’s two rooms will be redesigned in a more streamlined fashion, and the front wall of the first room will be knocked out and replaced with windows to provide more light. Modular furnishings will be used to better integrate the lab into the library.

Alyssa Cooper, associate director of the Ithaca Fund, says the senior class gift committee brainstormed more than 20 different ideas for the gift. The idea for Phase II came from the College librarian, Lis Chabot. The committee presented the top three ideas to President’s Council for approval. Once that was received, the class voted on the top choice.

Phase II will create a multimedia lab that will allow students to work on projects that incorporate graphic design, audio, and video. A new presentation room will feature a 60-inch plasma screen with which students can test out their presentations. A collaboration room with three wall-mounted 32-inch LCD monitors will enable students to gather around a table and hook up their computers to a central docking station. When linked to the LCD, students will be able to take turns displaying their ideas and content.

The goal of the gift campaign was to secure gifts from 411 seniors and raise $25,000 for the lab and $35,000 overall. By the end of May, the senior class had exceeded expectations. Gifts from 492 seniors, senior class parents, the alumni association board of directors, and other individuals had raised $27,041 for the lab and $14,869 for other College designations, bringing the total gift from the class of 2011 to $41,910.

Danielle Giserman, senior class president, says the addition to the media lab will improve the quality of the library and draw students in with the new technology.

“This gift will help students because they will have access to [more computers and editing programs] in the library,” she says. “It will be great for student projects. I am excited to see the finished product after all this hard work.”