During the past academic year, the Friends provided support for the Libraries in the following ways:
Strengthening Library Collections
The Friends provided $10,000 for the conservation of rare and unique materials in the collections. Special book purchases included In Visible Cities, a fine press publication by Edition Reese (Isla Vista, CA 2012) presented in honor of Ann E. Shanahan '59 for her service as FSCL Chair, 2007-2013.
Improving Library Spaces and Equipment
New furnishings were purchased with Friends funds for the Burack Reading Area on Level 2 and the new East Asian Languages Lounge on Level 4.
The renovation of the Friends of the Libraries Reading Room stands as a major accomplishment for the Friends. Since the Reading Room’ opened in November 2010, students have enjoyed this comfortable and quiet space. It has become such a popular space that last fall we purchased a second study table, chairs and additional ottomans.
Library Orientation is an important first step that helps new students learn to navigate the rich resources and services available to them. The Friends encourage attendance by adding a $5 gift to each attendee's One Card. As a result, Smith has one of the highest attendance rates among peer institutions.
The Friends provide students with late night refreshment breaks during reading periods in December and May.
Last fall, the Friends teamed up with the Music Department and purchased ukeleles to initiate a lending program in Josten Library. This has proved a great success, and the 2013-14 academic year opened with new student club, The Ukelele Club!
In May, the Friends present new books to the libraries, each one plated in honor of a graduating student library assistant.
Digital Services Coordinator Sika Berger became the 7th librarian to avail of the FSCL Staff Development Fund when she attended the Association of College and Research Libraries Intentional Teacher Immersion Program last October. She described the program as very useful, adding that it informs her teaching every day.
Supporting the Smith Community
The Friends underwrite access to JSTOR (a digital archive of academic journals and scholarly resources) for Smith alumnae via the Alumnae Association website.
The Friends provided a travel stipend for two doctoral students conducting summer research at the Sophia Smith Collection.
The Friends hosted a number of fun and informative events relating to the Libraries special collections. Podcasts are available for those who were unable to attend.