Construction of the new addition began in 1968 and ended two years later. The 1.2 million-dollar facility provided additional seating space for about seven hundred students and library space for an additional ninety thousand volumes.27
Soon after the completion of the new addition, an important administrative change occurred when longtime Stout faculty member Dr. David P. Barnard was named Dean of Learning Resources. This resulted in the library and audiovisual services being combined with a name change for the library to Media Retrieval Services-Pierce Library.
There were other important changes as well. In 1969 an Educational Materials Center (EMC) was created following a recommendation from the National Council for Accrediting Teacher Education. Brooke B. Anson was hired to develop the EMC, a position he assumed until he was named Coordinator of Public Services in 1975, following the retirement of Beulah C. Howison after 33 years of service. Two years later through joint efforts of the State Historical Society, the Dunn County Historical Society, and the library; an Area Research Center was added. Gayle Martinson became Stout's first full-time University Archivist/ARC Coordinator in 1978.
The rental Textbook Service again became an administrative responsibility of the Pierce Library on December 1, 1975 after being operated by Administrative Services for a number of years. With the appointment of Brenda Bley in 1977 as Textbook Service manager, a name change to Rental Resource Services was approved.
John J. Jax, Library Director, 1971
In 1971 Bentley retired. During her seventeen years at Stout the library doubled in size. John Joseph Jax became the next director of the library. Jax came to Stout as an instructor and assistant librarian in 1959. He had received his B.A. from LaCrosse and his M.S. in Library Science from Madison.
Jax reorganized the library by naming Beulah E. Howison as Coordinator of Public Services, Mary R. Donley as Coordinator of Technical Services, and Philip J. Schwarz as Special Assistant for Automation. In 1973, an integrated audiovisual, printed resources concept was introduced. Audiovisual resources were cataloged, shelved and circulated together with print resources. This was a new concept for a college library initiated by Dean Barnard in 1970. Film rental and micrographics services were assumed as library responsibilities during the early 1970's.
In recent years technology has played an increasingly vital role at the Stout library. Automation not only makes the librarian's job easier in finding and providing material for users, it also aids in problems of storage through micrographics and other procedures. The simple addition of the first Xerox machine for student use in 1966 changed dramatically the capabilities of the library.
In 1967 under the leadership of Dean Robert S. Swanson of the Graduate College and with the aid of a grant from the United States Office of Education to study the substantive Library holdings of industrial education, the computer was first introduced at Stout. A key-punch, collator, sorter, printing/accounting machine and two staff members, Ed Lund, programmer and Bonnie Christianson, key punch operator were acquired to establish a machine-readable data base for library holdings. A Computer Output Microfiche (COM) public catalog was produced in 1974 and placed in faculty offices and residence halls. With Philip Schwarz's appointment as special assistant for automation in 1973, Stout library automation progressed with numerous Keyword Out of Text (KWOC) indices to special collections. In 1982, Stout acquired the first truly integrated automated library information system in the UW-System and became one of the few libraries in the nation as a whole, possessing such a system.
Students using the library's on-line catalog ALIS (Automated Library Information System)
The role of the staff also changed with the growth of the library and the introduction of automation. Staff members had to become more specialized in areas of the new technology while maintaining their basic library expertise. In some cases grants had to be received to enable the librarians to understand for themselves how the new technology could be used. With that understanding they had to increase their roles as teachers to show students and faculty members how to use the new services.
Staff members participated in projects outside of the library as well. From 1977-1980, the Stout library served as lead institution in developing a new library for the Institute of Electronics and Electricity in Boumerdes, Algeria. John J. Jax, library director, made several trips to Algeria to coordinate development. Key library personnel were involved in acquiring more than $648,000 worth of library resources, which were cataloged and processed at Stout and shipped to Algeria.
By the mid-seventies it was apparent that a new building was needed for the library. Lack of space had again become a problem, but there were other factors as well. Temperatures could not be controlled and that affected audiovisual equipment and paper fife. The layout was also awkward in that some sections had to be split and placed in different areas of the library. Planning to construct the new building took years, but it was not until September, 1978 that the building was approved. In July 1979, actual construction began on what was to become the new Library Learning Center (a name change from Media Retrieval Services to the Library Learning Center was formally approved on June 13, 1983, by action of the West Central Wisconsin Consortium).
Library Learning Center
(Photo courtesy of UW-Stout, ITS Photographic Services)