Special to Iredell Free News
Mitchell Community College recently held a special celebration at the Huskins Library on the Statesville Campus for the long-awaited ribbon cutting of the library’s Maverick Room.
Through a grant titled “Collaborative Spaces,” the Huskins Library established the Maverick Room along with other collaborative spaces to support students, faculty, staff, community, and alumni. The spaces have been in use since August of 2020 but due to the pandemic, these spaces had not been officially recognized for their significant campus impact.
“These spaces promote collaborative learning for all types of library users. These spaces are beneficial to the campus because groups can safely plan, collaborate, create, explore, and build relationships,” said Beverly Rufty, Mitchell’s director of Library and Curriculum Support Services.
“We foresee many opportunities for the college and for the library to build rapport and partnerships with various groups through the use of these spaces. The rooms have already been booked 1,330 times since we started taking online reservations, even before the long-awaited ribbon cutting ceremony,” she said.
The creation of these collaborative spaces enhances the library’s ability to provide educational opportunity for interdisciplinary partnership, cooperation, and exploration. Collaborative spaces available for use inside Huskins Library include the Maverick Room, a Green Screen Production Room, and a Makerspace complete with 3D printing, art resources, gaming PCs, Oculus Quests, robotics kits, video/sound recorders, editing software and more.
The establishment of the Maverick Room, along with a partnership between the Mitchell Community College Alumni Association, Huskins Library, and local historical societies, enables Library staff to preserve the heritage of Mitchell Community College, which was first chartered in 1852.
The Maverick Room is home to an archive collection featuring artifacts and memorabilia dating back to the 1800s and displays a special collection titled Notable Mitchell Authors with compositions by Mitchell alumni. The Maverick Room also serves as a meeting space where patrons of the library can research and explore the rich history of the College. Alumni are also able to reserve the Maverick Room for meetings or small business functions.
The “Collaborative Spaces” grant is made possible by funding from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (IMLS grant number LS-00-19-0034-19).