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Douglass Library class space: multi-media rich and fully handicapped accessible

February 11, 2014
Professor Deborah Shuford, left, and Eric LeGrand consider one of the storyboarding tactics used by Director Spike Lee (onscreen) in his film, Do The Right Thing, in the group screening room of the Media Center at the Douglass Library.

Professor Deborah Shuford, left, and Eric LeGrand in the group screening room of the Media Center at the Douglass Library. Photo by Rich Sandler, November 2013

Douglass Library class space: multi-media rich and fully handicapped accessible

When Rutgers football player and inspirational hero Eric LeGrand announced recently that he’d completed all his academic requirements and received his undergraduate degree, the Douglass Library’s Media Center took some pride in their facility’s small role in that success.

In the summer of 2013 semester Eric was looking for a space at the university where he could work on a Senior Essay Project in American Culture, an independent study course he’d be taking in the fall semester with his advisor, African Studies Professor Deborah Shuford. He planned to analyze a variety of films and use some of the cinematic story-telling techniques he observed in a movie script he was developing about his football accident and subsequent adaptation. The script would mirror the story told in his book, “Believe: The Victorious Story of Eric LeGrand.”

To effectively tackle this independent study assignment, Eric needed a room that was well equipped with multimedia – a wall-size monitor, video playback equipment, stereo sound system, computer with wireless keyboard and mouse, and other accoutrements. Yet the room, and the facility it is located within, also had to accommodate his wheelchair – that entails a ramp to the entrance, elevators, and wide entry doors throughout the building.

Eric found that many of the handicapped accessible spaces at the university lack multimedia resources and many multimedia spaces are not fully handicapped accessible. One study space however successfully combines both features – the group screening room in the Media Center of the Douglass Library. Eric and Professor Shuford booked the room for monthly sessions in the fall semester and, with the help of Media Center staff, Eric’s independent study course went smoothly.

The group screening room may be reserved up to four times per semester for multimedia use, instructional or otherwise. In between reservations, the room is open on a first-come basis to classes and individuals working with audio-visual media.

For more information on the group screening room in the Media Center, please contact Media Center access services supervisor Jan Reinhart at jreinhar@rulmail.rutgers.edu or 848-932-5032.