First Nations University library services impacted by COVID-19 lockdown
- Sarah Louison | July 08, 2020
On March 27 the First Nations University of Canada officially announced that all three of its libraries in Regina, Saskatoon, and Prince Albert were closed until further notice.
FNUniv librarian Paula Diagle and her team at the three campus locations have been working hard to ensure publications are still available online during the pandemic.
However, some services can’t be provided online, such as copies of textbooks on reserve.
”The hardest thing, (is) knowing there are students who don’t have access to a textbook because our reserve selection was closed to students,” said Diagle.
As well, older books that haven’t been digitized will be affected, she said.
“Our special collections and older materials might be difficult for some because our collections aren’t available online, and a lot of books are out of print and we won’t be able to communicate with it digitally,” she said.
“Since the COVID-19 withdrawal, we don’t really know how many students are left using our online services,” said Diagle.
FNUniv student Charmaine Ermine said not being to do her work at the library is a struggle.
“I had to get my own printer, (I have) slower internet access, and limited access to resources within the library,” she said.
Earlier this week the First Nation University of Canada had made the decision to continue on with remote learning for the Fall 2020 semester.
However, Daigle hopes that the library will be able to loan books again as restrictions ease.
“If Saskatchewan goes to Phase 3 or Phase 4, a student will call us, (and) we will check a book out for them. That’s what we’re hoping to do for them,” she said.