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Local Elementary School Students See a Future at the Oviatt Library

eNews Edition: Spring 2019

Nancy Davidson reading to children at the Teacher Curriculum Center
Nancy Davidson reading to children at the Teacher Curriculum Center at the Oviatt Library

One of the many delights we have the privilege to enjoy in the Oviatt Library is the awe and spark of imagination that ignites every time students from local community schools visit us for a field trip tour. Over the last five years, the Oviatt has conducted 302 tours welcoming 5,435 visitors.

The Oviatt Library tour provides visitors with a clear vision of the many resources available for project research, study group collaboration, access to technology, and assistance from subject specialist librarians. This glimpse into the future on the CSUN campus fills impressionable young minds with hope and the desire to achieve higher educational goals. Tours are offered to K-12 schools, newly enrolled CSUN students and their parents, and various community groups.

The purpose and the intention of providing these tours are well-defined. “We at the Oviatt Library believe that those students we invest in today will have the opportunity to create a brighter future tomorrow,” shared Coleen Martin, Coordinator of Outreach Services.

The Creative Media Studio is one of the many favorites of the Library tour-goers. The space features twelve HP computers and six 27" iMacs loaded with media editing software such as Adobe Creative Cloud, Final Cut Pro, and much more. The department also features an audio recording studio, free 3D printing services, and seven-day equipment checkout.  Another memorable feature of the Library tour includes a visit to the Library’s Automated Storage & Retrieval System (ASRS). Students are impressed with the technology and how it is able to house and retrieve items on demand. Built in 1991, the Oviatt Library's ASRS was the world's first robotic library storage and retrieval system. It consists of 13,260 steel bins on a rack structure that occupies 8000 sq. ft., with a capacity of 1.7 million volumes.

Visitors are also introduced to the Learning Commons, which provides a flexible, dynamic space for collaboration and innovation. It features an open computer lab with PCs and Macs, group study rooms equipped with screen-sharing and write-on walls, and configurable furniture. On the second floor, the tour introduces a serene space, the Robert and Maureen Gohstand Leisure Reading Room. This cozy area was designed for the enjoyment of the quiet pleasures of reading, with a collection of works intended to encourage reading for recreation and pleasure.

Last fall, a third grade teacher at Vintage Magnet Elementary School expressed her gratitude by sharing a thoughtful note, along with drawings from her students following a tour (see the gallery below). She wrote,

“Thank you so much for our visit to the Oviatt Library. We are grateful to have had the opportunity to visit again and to experience more outside of the classroom. Real world examples of art, literature, and more are what make an impact on these students today. When the world they read about in books comes alive, that’s when change for the better is made. I am very happy as a teacher to expose all of my students to this area of our life and culture. The tour around the library and getting to see the robotic storage area was so memorable. Thank you again for making this a great field trip and impact my students’ lives.”

Having made a positive impression on so many students, we look forward to the next generation of Matadors to take advantage of the amazing resources at the Oviatt Library!

For more information on Oviatt Library tours, please visit

View our Image Gallery of Children's Letters to the Library