8 October 2018

Dear A&S graduate students,

The College of Arts and Science is committed to ensuring that our graduate students are supported and have the resources they need to succeed. Each year when we assign the graduate student carrels, we receive many more requests than there are carrels and are forced to turn down many students (last year alone it was 40). We understand that carrels provide you with much needed space for reading, studying, group meetings, one-on-one advising, and writing.

Therefore, we are moving the graduate student carrels from the 4th floor of Buttrick Hall to the Central Library. This move allows us to improve access, security, connectivity to the larger university, and, ultimately, satisfaction. We have already been in communication with a number of graduate students, the Graduate Student Council, and Dean Wallace to secure feedback and reactions. So far the response has been very favorable, and through these conversations we have learned about additional needs of our graduate students that will allow even better use of the space. 

So you know, the library offers 198 open carrels (currently only 114 in Buttrick), 452 lockers (currently only 100 in Buttrick), and 95 lockable private carrels (currently zero in Buttrick). This move should, therefore, enable us to provide assigned carrels to every student who requests one, and extend them to students in their third year of graduate study, as well. The lockers and lockable carrels provide security that wasn’t available in Buttrick and are particularly important for students working on their dissertations. Finally, being in the library, Vanderbilt’s hub of research and learning, more closely connects A&S graduate students with the rest of the university and supports our mission to foster a “trans-institutional,” collaborative academic experience. Please note that we will be investing money to update some of the carrel space in the library, including new furniture.

We will follow up later this semester with more details, including the timing of the move and the process to reserve carrels for the Spring. We remain committed to supporting your research and studies. If you have questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out.


John Geer, Dean, College of Arts & Science

David Wright, Dean of Graduate Education and Research, College of Arts & Science