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Book 'em Dave

(December 16, 1999, Gazette)

Dave Lane

Photo by HSIMS

By Sharon Gray

Anyone who has ever used a room in the medical school knows that the person they’ll probably be dealing with is Dave Lane. He’s part of Health Sciences Information and Media Services (HSIMS), with specific responsibilities for the Teaching Facilities section of the unit, which includes booking rooms and equipment.

Mr. Lane is responsible for 32 rooms, ranging from small seminar rooms meant for use by a maximum of 12 people to the 347-seat main auditorium. He said the use of small rooms has increased in the last few years with the new emphasis on small group tutorials in the undergraduate medical curriculum.

While the main client served by Teaching Facilities is the Faculty of Medicine, there are many other users including the Health Care Corporation, Nursing, Pharmacy and outside groups. Use by the Faculty of Medicine – especially for teaching – has first priority. Sometimes there’s more than one request for a particular room, but Mr. Lane says with a little negotiation most problems can be solved to everyone’s satisfaction.

There’s no doubt that there’s a heavy use of the available space – in fact, last year HSIMS booked 46,000 hours of room use. To co-ordinate the complex scheduling, Mr. Lane uses a computer program called Reservit, which he says is very user-friendly. It’s quite a change from the system he first used when he started work with the faculty in 1986, when each room had its own file card and bookings were done manually.

Equipment use has also changed fundamentally over the last decade. At one time overheads were the equipment of first choice, but today the two multimedia carts at HSIMS are in constant use.

By the way, if Mr. Lane is away from his desk, don’t worry. Julie Galway or whoever else is staffing the front desk at HSIMS can pitch in and make sure the room booking is made.