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Dean’s Update: Has Time Been Moving Faster Since You Last Read In Circulation?

October 6, 2022

Preparing the Dean’s Update for this dual issue of In Circulation, I wondered if time is flying by faster this year. I just did this not long ago!

I did a little of that aimless surfing around the Internet and found there were quite a few others reflecting on this perception recently and offer all sorts of explanations: “Emotional experiences make time seem to go faster.” “Seems faster when we are happy and around people we like… slower when we are bored, sad, or not feeling [well].”

Even a distinguished scientist chimed in with a claim that “…in recent years, the Earth's rotation has accelerated, shortening some days by milliseconds…” and “…perceptions change as we age, and our metabolism slows down.” I felt satisfied for the moment with the idea that sometimes simply our clock radio and our mental image of time are not aligned. Let me offer here correlation with images and perceptions of activity that our readers might share with us.

We did not send out a summer issue of In Circulation this year. And although you did not hear from us, we stayed busy. In this September/October issue we highlight the start of the new academic year and give you insight into what you missed over the last few months.

Most exciting for us is successfully welcoming ten new staff, including full-time hires, temporary staff, and student co-ops. Read the article Seven New Staff & Three Co-op Students Join the Drexel Libraries for details. There is a noticeable excitement of having more people around, and new staff bring new energy and ideas to the Drexel Libraries. We are happy, which confirms one idea why time seems to pass faster.

During a recent All Staff meeting, I asked colleagues to share observations about coming back to campus. Many staff are more than over the COVID-centric past two years, and are eager to engage with students, faculty, and staff on campus again. Reading the article about our fall events lineup left me spinning—we are again in full gear to focus on the Libraries’ work to build community and doing so in person (and online).

This year’s annual Staff Appreciation Day also reinforced both our desire to meet in person and our sense of work community. View the photo essay and see how taking time to Look at West Philadelphia through the Lens of Public Murals lifted any boredom of summer slowness and gave us an opportunity to enjoy each other’s company away from campus, but not too far.

It is all relative, but in general the impression among DUL staff is that yes time is flying by—and in little ways, we affirm we are happy with our work here at the Libraries. Let time seem to move faster. We will slow it down for those who have not experienced this impression by publishing remaining issues of In Circulation this year every two months or so.

I hope you do not miss us too much! If you do, check our website for updates and posted reports of events.

Happy new academic year!

Danuta A. Nitecki, PhD
Dean of Libraries