Freshers deserve to use the library as much as fourth years
It’s unpopular but they still pay £9000
Welcome to St Andrews Library, which has a counter to demonstrate that only 10% of the population can actually fit in. With limited resources, limited seats and a cloying atmosphere that will probably give you a migraine, it's not exactly an oasis of learning and development.
However, given the limitation of seats available, there has been a growing level of animosity towards the younger students in taking up desk space. First, I should say, I'm not a first year and I don't go into the library unless it is absolutely necessary – I like to consider myself allergic.
However, I feel like I understand the struggle of needing somewhere to go and not being welcomed (see me at 2AM being turned away from The Rule because it's closing). Recently, I saw a young fresher really upset because they had got a 15. A 15. Many of us in the later stages of their degree would cry if they got a 15; of happiness.
The emotional toll of anxiety and competitiveness in St Andrews means that even Freshers, whose grades may not count, still require the validation of getting good marks as a sign that they might not actually fail their degree.
They should have just as much right to use the library as our other, older students. Granted, it doesn't count towards their degrees, but transcripts are becoming increasingly important in the employment world. Sadly, for law, journalism and even the odd banking job, you must now declare all module grades. Gone is the world where your seven out of twenty in Ancient History means nothing. This means that the poor Freshers, who pay just as much as we do, should have the right to establish themselves in the library.
So next time you see the counter at 800 people, spare a thought for how Freshers were feeling. It is easy to say that they don't deserve the library when you aren't in that position. Instead, blame the system and the lack of support from the university itself – I mean, they do get £60,000 of fines from us each year.
However, also please feel free to blame the absolute dicks that leave their stuff there for four hours so they can save a seat for 5pm after they've been out into actual fresh air.