Undergrads Banned From Law Library Effective Nov. 24


(Tyler Martins/The Observer)
(Tyler Martins/The Observer)

Undergraduates at Fordham College at Lincoln Center’s (FCLC) campus have taken notice of a new sign outside the Law School Library: effective Nov. 24, the T.J. and Nancy Maloney Library is exclusive to members of Fordham’s law program for the remainder of the semester.

“The [Law School] administration has its reasons for the restriction of access to law students,” Dean of Students at FCLC Keith Eldredge said. “In all likelihood, the plan would be to implement this [restriction] at every [Fordham Law School] exam period going forward,” Eldredge continued. “After exams end, the library would go back to full use for anybody in the community.”

According to Eldredge, noise disruption in Maloney appeared to be the main complaint of the law students. “Primarily complaints were about noise levels, though there were also complaints about alcohol. On one occasion, there was an excessive amount of alcohol found in a study room,” Eldredge said.

As Maloney is situated in the same building as McKeon Hall, it is many freshmen’s  preferred study space. According to Megan Crane, FCLC ’18, it is affectionately known to her and others as the “Lawbrary.”  Crane said,“I relied so much on it to study because it’s such a quiet space … It kept me so focused.”

Crane had heard rumors of law students getting annoyed with undergraduate students for  using their library. “But I don’t understand why they would ban us if it’s helping us get our work done,” she said.

Dillon Reebok, Gabelli School of Business at Lincoln Center (GSBLC) ’18, agreed with Crane. “I think it’s ridiculous because it’s also one of our dining areas because of Jazzman’s [Café].” Jazzman’s Cafe is located on the second floor of Maloney, and is the only dining option open Sunday afternoons, from 12pm until 9pm. Reebok, however, wasn’t concerned about a potential lack of study space, “but it’s more of a nuisance that we can’t than an actual concern.”

However, the law students are concerned about space and sound issues. Evan King, LAW ’15, said, “it’s difficult to even get a seat.”  King continued, “If I go up there, I need to be able to sit down immediately, and I’ll probably be there for 12 hours [studying].”

He continued, “After being an undergrad and going through the same set of undergrad finals, being in law school, it’s a different game.

“During those three weeks that we are in the library for finals, you need that silence.”

Given that finals are approaching, the primary study space for all undergraduates and graduate students will most likely be Quinn Library. According to Eldredge, law students will not be barred from Quinn Library as undergraduates are from Maloney, according to Eldredge.

“Quinn Library is available as a resource more geared toward [undergraduate] classes and studies,” he said. “I don’t really see why a law student would ever need to go get materials from Quinn [Library] …The quiet place to study in a library setting, both places meet that need.”

In an email, Michael Martin, dean of the Fordham Law School, said, “I’m very pleased that the new building has allowed the Law School to be more integrated into the life of all students at Fordham’s Lincoln Center campus.”

“At the same time, we have to ensure that the Law Library continues to meet the needs of law students in providing a quiet place for their focused study in preparation for and during exam periods. Therefore, I made the decision to limit access [to] non-law students during exam periods,” Martin continued.

According to Martin, the University is making provisions for extra study space at the Lincoln Center campus, which is likely to be announced on Friday, Nov. 21.