Widener to Levy Fines On Teaching Fellows
Teaching fellows will lose their privilege of holding Widener books indefinitely without penalty when the Library introduces its IBM circulation system in July.
As part of a major change in library rules which will accompany the new filing system, the teaching fellows will have to pay regular fines if they keep books beyond the close of six-month periods ending October 30 and April 30. They will also be fined if they do not return requested books after two weeks.
Imposing fines on teaching fellows will mark the first time that the library has penalized any officers of the University for failing to return over-due books. Some fines may also be levied on higher ranks of the Faculty after certain of their books have been over-due for many months.
Foster Palmer, associate librarian for reference and circulation, said yesterday that losses of books and a rapid increase in demand have caused the tightening of library rules. Last year's total Widener circulation of 362,625 books was a 70 per cent increase over the figure for ten years ago.
Palmer said that the new limitations on the teaching fellows, who presently number 863, represented a compromise between the wishes of those who wished to treat them the same as graduate students and those who wanted to maintain the present unlimited privileges as an important fringe benefit for attracting teaching fellows.
"Although most teaching fellows are the soul of honor," Palmer said, "there is a sizeable minority which is not conscientious." In one spectacular case, Palmer reported that 100 over-due Widener books were found in an office of a teaching fellow three months after he left Cambridge.