Hello, everyone. I am Takahiro Ogawa. Do you often go to a library? I often go there to get a variety of books and materials. Also, it is often the case there are many people studying there, so once I take one step into the library, I feel compelled to study. I am not a hard studier by nature, so to make myself study, I have to place myself in an environment like the library.
Here, I will introduce the Nagoya University Central Library located on the Nagoya University Higashiyama campus. This library was renovated several years ago, and now its exterior is white and its interior has been refurbished. From around the exit of the subway station, you can see the beautiful contrast of the white library building surrounded by all the greenery (especially in the fresh green season).
According to the library's statistical data for AY2016, the Central Library had 1.24 million books, and had 770,000 visitors last year. It is open 355 days a year, almost every day except the year-end and new year holidays. The library opening hours is from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. (from 8:45 a.m. on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays). The library annually conducts 190 seminars on, for example, how to search for documents and books, and write reports.
Nagoya University has about 20 libraries for its schools/graduate schools and 3.32 million books in total (as of March 31, 2017). Meanwhile, Nagoya City has 21 libraries and 3.25 million books in total (according to the FY2016 Nagoya City Library Annual Report). In this respect, the scale of Nagoya University's libraries is amazing, isn't it?
Moreover, the central library staff help us collect materials necessary for our research and studies. If Nagoya University libraries do not have the materials we are looking for, the library staff will make inquiries and help us collect materials from other university libraries. There is a computer room in the central library where students can prepare reports and read online materials. The library provides spaces where students can have discussions and hold group study and a support desk where students can consult on studies with graduate students who work there in shifts, including international students who can provide supports in English and Chinese. Since I am not good at English, I had an international student supporter to proofread my report written in English. The supporter corrected words and sentences in the report, from which I learned a lot.
Additionally, there is a variety of exhibitions and events being held. For example, panel exhibitions showing student study abroad experiences and exhibitions of valuable books owned by the library. Every year during the season of Tanabata (star festival celebrated on July 7), the library will exhibit a Tanabata decoration at the entrance, where bamboo leaves and papers will be prepared for everyone to write their wishes and hopes, such as "I hope to get better marks on my exams!", "I hope to pass the certification exam!", "I hope to get a good job!", "Help me graduate!", "Help me find a boyfriend/girlfriend", etc. Every year, I myself write, "I hope to improve my English abilities!" Around the year's end, the library sometimes hosts mini concerts.
Inside the library, we have a famous American coffee shop where tired students go to take a break from their studies. The smell of fresh aromatic coffee is so enticing that during the breaks and weekends, even people from the neighborhood come to enjoy a drink. I felt that the library aims to be a facility for not only borrowing books but also gathering and utilizing comfortably for people, students and the surrounding community.
Lastly, libraries are essential to research and studies, and making good use of libraries is an important component to proceed with research and studies.
Nagoya University Central Library houses wide collection of specialized books and valuable publications. We have current and archived newspapers going back multiple decades as well as pre-war school text books. We also have thousands of scholarly journals that are saved to be used for research activities. If proper procedures to enter the Central Library are done, anyone can have access and browse all the documents available. If you have time, please come and visit Nagoya University's Central Library, one of Japan's foremost university libraries.
Introduction of printed photos (From top): Automated book shelves inside the Central Library; the pond and trees in front of the Central Library; Tanabata mini-concert
Reported by Takahiro Ogawa (Japan)
(Modified and Translated by the Public Relations Office, Nagoya University)