What We Do

Friends provide consistent and flexible income through annual membership dues. This support provides many tangible benefits for the libraries.

Strengthening Library Collections

We provide funds for new books and other materials. Additionally, the FSCL Preservation Fund helps protect rare and fragile materials in the collections.

Library Spaces and Equipment

We recently raised substantial funds for the renovation of the Friends of the Libraries Reading Room in Neilson Library, which opened in 2010.  Over the years, we have provided new furnishings and equipment and contributed to renovations both large and small. 

Supporting Students

Learning to take full advantage of library resources and services is essential to a successful academic career. New students are encouraged to attend Library Orientation in September and January. We promote participation with a token gift.

The lead-up to exams can be a stressful time, and students spend long hours in the libraries. The evening snacks we provide during reading period have proved to be a huge hit wth the midnight oil crowd.

Students who work in the libraries play an essential part in day-to-day operations. We celebrate their work by plating new books in their honor when they graduate. 

From time to time, we host panel discussions about careers in library and information science.

Building Endowment

Providing for the long-term well being of the libraries has always been a strategic focus of Friends' support. We have created endowments over the years to address specific needs. For example, over $40,000 has been contributed to the FSCL Preservation Fund to help protect valuable library materials. See Fundraising Goals for more examples of new and existing endowments.

Supporting Staff

We provide an annual professional development grant to enable staff to pursue special training opportunities. Several librarians have used the grant to attend a week-long immersion program in teaching and evaluating information literacy techniques.

Supporting the Smith Community

We host a number of events throughout the year inspired by treasures in the collections, by research conducted at Smith, and other topics of interest to the community. See News and Events.