University Experience

Chan Shun Centennial Library

Collections

The library at Southwestern contains approximately 140,000 print and electronic book volumes and 56,000 journal titles available in print and online. The library's main web page at library.swau.edu is the starting point for research. Patrons connect to librarians through the webpage, search the library’s collections, and explore research tutorials.   

Southwestern's library encompasses specialized collections that support academic programs. The Adventist Heritage Center Collections include substantial primary source materials chronicling the establishment of the Seventh-day Adventist church and the presence of the Adventist movement in the Southwest. Items include rare books, photographs, and manuscripts, as well as reproductions of similar materials. The Ruth King McKee Curriculum Library serves Southwestern's education program by providing examples of curriculum and instruction materials used in the K12 setting.

Southwestern's scholars link to thousands of academic, special, and public libraries within the United States and beyond, courtesy of TexShare and other consortial agreements. On-demand delivery of research materials for SWAU students and employees is made possible through TexShare, and can be initiated through completing the request form found on the library's webpage. Also, current students and faculty are invited to request a TexShare borrowers' card at the library's front desk, which grants individual borrowing privileges at most Texas university and public libraries.
 

The library's professional staff members provide necessary resources and assist faculty and students in retrieving materials for research purposes. Instruction and individual research consultations are available by request. Online subscription databases provide access to extensive resources, which are equally available on and off campus. Students using licensed subscriptions off campus will be asked to authenticate their connection to Southwestern with their Campus Portal login.

Southwestern's Lecture Series

The Carol Sample Lecture Series, an endowed, annual series that honors retired English professor Dr. Carol Sample, supports guest lecturers whose work appeals primarily to writing and literature students.

The Hal Wright Science & Religion Lecture Series, established in 2018, presents up to three speakers annually who address the connections between science and faith.  The Hal Wright lectures will extend the mission of the George and Dottie Saxon Lecture Series, established in 2006, which brought to campus speakers such as Michael Behe, Kurt Wise, Ronald Numbers, and David Berlinski.

The Scholars Lecture Series supports all disciplines. Two presentations per semester offer insight into and commentary within many fields, often presented by individuals whose life experience has been outside the academy. Recent programs have included political analysis, psychology, music theory, history, religion, education, and international relations.

Southwestern's Dramatic Presentations

Southwestern offers a drama class every spring semester. Participants explore theoretical material on the drama in history and on drama as a genre, but also gain the practical experience of staging a full-length work by classic writers such as Shakespeare, Goldsmith, Wilde, and others. The students learn all aspects of stagecraft, ranging from acting techniques to the use of blocking, staging, props and costumes to achieve an overall effect. These performances enrich both the presenters and also the community that views them, as we together experience the best that dramatic culture has to offer about ourselves and our world.

Rough Writers

Writers meet weekly in The Write Spot to review one another’s work, encourage each other in the creative process, and offer suggestions and guidance. This is a great place to network with other faculty, staff, and students who share your love of writing. The Rough Writers present their creative work in public readings and performances.

Meadows Gallery

Meadows Gallery serves as Southwestern's focal point for displays and exhibits. Located within the campus library building, the Gallery has shown traveling exhibits as well as local talent.

The Herbert M. and Ivanette Woodall Hopps Museum and Welcome Center

Primarily a community and visitor center, this two-story facility is created by eclectic exhibits which include periodic displays of private collections as well as historic items dating from the university and town's beginnings in 1893.

Southwestern's Dinosaur Science Museum

Southwestern’s Paleontology Museum houses specimens from the Hanson Research Center in Wyoming, the Earth History Research Center (a collaborative endeavor among many academic institutions), and Southwestern’s own index collections of fossilized vertebrates and invertebrates. Most specimens can be viewed through the online portal to the museum (http://fossil.swau.edu), but personal tours and research viewing can be arranged as well. Southwestern’s Harold Drake Preparatory Laboratory serves as a working exhibit in which visitors are welcome to observe the cleaning and preparation of geological and paleontological specimens in person or online at http://dinosaur.swau.edu.

Thomsen Observatory

Southwestern’s astronomy courses benefit from access to the Thomsen Observatory, which is adjacent to campus. The Observatory and related physics lab house a number of reflector and refractor telescopes that offer celestial exploration for students, faculty, and the community.