By Stephanie Ng & Patrick Pu
Albert Einstein once said, ‘The only thing that you absolutely have to know is the location of the library’. I’d like to go further by suggesting that we remember not just where the library is, but what the library does. And in these times, what the library does can only be more impactful when we work together. — University Librarian A/Prof Natalie Pang
NUS’ Medicine and Science communities have plenty to look forward to in this new academic year, one of which is the opening of a brand-new Medicine+Science Library (MSL).
Strategically located between the School of Medicine and the Faculty of Science, the new MSL will serve as an activity hub where the Science and Medical communities come together for collaboration and innovation. The merging of the two libraries – among Singapore’s oldest academic libraries – took five long years to complete, in no small part due to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Academic libraries are at the heart of a university community… a place for research and discovery, a place for quiet introspection and deep thinking, and a place for hard work,” said NUS President Professor Tan Eng Chye, who officially opened the MSL on 1 Aug 2023.
Merging the Libraries
The Medical and Science Libraries have long been considered to be complementary in purpose and function.
In 2017, the idea for combining both libraries was mooted, with the former Faculty of Dentistry building identified to house the new combined library. The merger brings greater efficiency through consolidated resources, as well as opportunity to provide better infrastructure to serve the unique needs of the Medical and Science Faculties.
“The design concept was inspired by the core function of a library,” said University Librarian A/Prof Natalie Pang. “The Library serves as a knowledge centre and exchange, akin to how the cranium brings together activities in both the left and right hemispheres of the brain.”
While everyone was excited about the move, it was also hard to say goodbye to the old library spaces. Both the Medical and Science Libraries were not only a second home for the many long-serving library staff, they served as a natural hub for generations of Medicine and Science community who frequented, studied and worked at the two libraries.
Discover Endless Possibilities at the new MSL!
The impressive 4-storey building has a capacity of over 1,200 seats and hosts a variety of immersive and interactive facilities to stimulate education, interdisciplinary research, and community involvement. More than just a building for housing books, MSL is an environmentally-friendly space, equipped with facilities like individual study pods, technology-enabled spaces, reconfigurable spaces for collaboration, and casual spaces to grab a coffee and quick snack.
Come visit MSL, and check out what our newest library has to offer!