Owing fines delays course registration

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By Paula Christine Schuler

sac-ranger@alamo.edu 

On Oct. 5, 1789, George Washington checked out “The Law of Nations,” by Emer de Vattel from the New York Society Library, which occupied the same building as the federal government while New York was the nation’s capital.

The book was never returned nor were any fines paid, according to the library’s website.

In 2010, Washington’s estate staff at Mount Vernon offered to replace the book with a different copy of the same edition.

The library celebrated the occasion by releasing the first president from his fine, 221 years after he first checked out the book.

This college’s library fines may be tiny at 10 cents a day, but students are not the nation’s first president and are not likely to get a reprieve.

An unfortunate result of unpaid library fines at this college is a hold on financial aid for students.

Consequences of unpaid fines include registration delays, possible scheduling changes, extra trips or phone calls to the library and added stress.

Librarian assistant Rachel Jaramillo said she has seen holds placed for fines as low as 80 cents.

Librarian and assistant professor Tom Bahlinger said, “We’re not trying to be punitive, but if you check something out you do have a responsibility to get it back or renew it.”

Students can renew checked-out items in person in Moody Learning Center or online at Alamo.edu/sac/library.

For more information, call 210-486-0554.

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