Media service in Library dissolved, moved to new places

Luis Martinez, News Editor

The media service department of Booth Library has been dissolved and its equipment moved to the Center for Academic Technology Support for the remainder of this semester.

Allen Lanham, the dean of library services, said the idea to dissolve the department was in place for a while and now was the opportune time to do so.

Lanham said with the retirement of two of the staff members in the department, the time to dissolve the area had come.

“In consultation with the provost over the last couple of years, we’ve been planning for this,” Lanham said.

Lanham said they continued running the media services department as usual until the staff members retired.

John Looby, the chief instructional media systems engineer, and electronics technician Henry Brown both retired last fall.

The remaining employees of the department were integrated into different positions on campus.

“At the end of the fall semester, we began preparing in earnest for the transfer of all of the equipment that belonged to media services to other parts of the campus, where the services would now reside,” Lanham said. “Most of the delivery services and the classroom preparations and those types of services will be in the CATS center.”

Lanham said the center has been providing this service for Eastern for quite some time now and they will now be responsible for distributing media equipment.

“During the holiday period, and we’re still continuing through January and probably through half of February, we will be placing all of that media equipment into a site on campus that will be the best for its maximum usage,” Lanham said. “Most of the equipment is going to the CATS organization and some things are going to the Doudna Fine Arts staff in terms of recording concerts and presentation.”

Lanham said the department was in place by itself for over 55 years, before becoming integrated with the library.

“Media services was established decades ago,” Lanham said. “It was in the library since probably the 70’s, but it stood alone before that.”

The media services department was the original source for students and faculty members to receive any type of media equipment, such as projectors, microphones and more.

“So in terms of media materials, CDs, LPs, DVDs, VHS, any type of media material in the library collection, we still maintain that,” Lanham said. “We still have the machine and players for a people to use any of those materials in the building.”

Lanham said the financial troubles Eastern has faced over the past years have not had much of an impact in deciding whether or not to dissolve the department, as the idea for dissolving the department was in place since the CATS center was first established.

“Technology changes at such a rapid pace,” Lanham said. “Media services, we’ve gone through every format since World War II basically.”


Luis Martinez can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]