Library Supporters Give Boost to Geisel Revitalization Efforts

Jeanne Jones

The Geisel Library Revitalization Initiative (GLRI), aimed at renovating and updating the interior spaces of the university’s most iconic building, recently received a generous boost from Library supporters Jeanne Jones and Margaret “Maggie” Seeley.

Launched in 2015 with a lead gift from Audrey Geisel, the GLRI will transform and revitalize significant areas of Geisel Library’s most used floors—the 1st and 2nd and 8th floors. Plans are underway to transform these areas into modern, technology-rich spaces that support and advance research, teaching, and learning activities, and philanthropic funding is needed to help make them a reality. Because of the significance of the initiative to the campus, Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla has provided a generous $1 million matching challenge grant to encourage participation.

“We are very grateful for the support we’ve received from stalwart supporters like Jeanne Jones and Maggie Seeley,” said University Librarian Brian Schottlaender. “Jeanne has been a longtime supporter of the university and the Library, and will be the Library’s representative on the International Leadership Committee for the upcoming Campaign for UC San Diego. Maggie is an alumna and has been a great supporter of our collections over the years. We thank them for their gifts, and hope their gifts encourage others to come forward to support the campus’ flagship building and the students and scholars who depend on us.”

Jeanne Jones, who served as the inaugural Honorary Committee chair for last year’s Dinner in the Library, is a menu consultant, a syndicated columnist, and the author of 33 books. She has served on the board of directors for numerous organizations, including the La Jolla Playhouse, the San Diego Opera, and the San Diego and Imperial County Chapter of the American Red Cross. Jeanne has also been the recipient of several awards for her contributions, including Living Legacy, Women of Dedication, and the Performing Arts Gold Star Award.
Maggie Seeley, who graduated from UC San Diego in 1973, has fond memories of spending time in Geisel Library as a student. She has stayed connected to the Library over the years, and has been a longtime supporter of Library collections and learning spaces. Her gift will result in the naming of a group study room in Geisel Library.

The GLRI renovations are slated to take more than three years to complete, with the 8th floor renovation expected to be completed by fall 2017. Work on the 1st and 2nd (main) floors is expected to be completed in spring 2019. The planning for the revitalization of Geisel Library’s spaces began last summer, when the Library embarked on an extensive visioning process to determine how the interior spaces of Geisel could be designed to better align with campus needs and expectations. As part of this process, Library staff solicited feedback from Library users, gathered data on and researched new and innovative learning spaces, and reviewed Library-related user studies and surveys. The Library is continuing to receive valuable feedback from faculty, students, and other users on how they envision the Library as an intellectual hub that supports new ways of learning, with offerings like immersive visualization, 3D printing, and digital media and technology assistance.