Why Florida Polytechnic University Is Ditching Books

PHOTO: The Science and Technology building at Florida Polytechnic University.

Florida's newest university spent $60 million on a state of the art library but doesn't plan on stocking it with any physical books.

That doesn't mean students at Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland won't have to study.

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The state of the art library, which was constructed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, is staffed by a team of librarians who will help the school's inaugural class of 500 students access 135,000 e-books, according to Library Journal.

It's part of the school's plan to create an environment that fosters innovation in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The school said it aims to help its students "become innovative problem-solvers and high-tech professionals through interdisciplinary teaching, leading-edge research and collaborative local, regional and global partnerships."

PHOTO: The Digital Library at Florida Polytechnic University.
Courtesy Florida Polytechnic University
PHOTO: The Digital Library at Florida Polytechnic University.

If students miss the feel of an actual book, they'll be able to get their fix at nearby Polk State College, which will allow Florida Polytechnic students to check out up to five items at a time.

Despite the prevalence of e-readers, Library Journal said bookless libraries are rarities.

Bexar County, Texas, is believed to be home to the first bookless public library in the United States.

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