Find the Library at Your Place Posted on April 20th, 2020 by

Happy National Library Week! The celebration, which occurs annually in April, provides a time to reflect on the benefits that libraries & library workers provide our communities. This year’s theme was originally, “Find Your Place at the Library.” Considering the flipped nature of our daily lives during this pandemic  – and the fact that libraries across the nation have closed their doors in order to help protect the health of their employees and communities – the organizers have updated the theme: Find the Library at Your Place.

In many ways, the work of running a library is like an iceberg. There’s a lot going on beneath the surface that library users don’t see. Most users aren’t privy to the spaces or technologies where library workers are ordering materials, cataloging and processing them, or creating and updating patron databases. Most users don’t see the work that goes into processing interlibrary loan requests or maintaining access to electronic materials or overseeing a complex budget. Most users aren’t sitting in on meetings where we’re discussing best practices for instruction or reference services or outreach.

And this is as it should be. Library services should be seamless – we want library users to walk thorugh our doors (or access our online materials) and find what they need. And we want library users to know exactly who and how to ask for help.

We’ve done a pretty darn good job at the Gustavus Library. We have always prioitized the educational needs of our users.  This has never been more evident that during the current emergency. In a very short amount of time, the staff and faculty of the Gustavus Library sprang into action with the singular goal of supporting our students, faculty and the entire Gustavus community in the move to online learning.

Much of this work has been behind the scenes – we’ve done a lot of Google Meets and webinars! But through it all, we have worked incredibly hard to further our mission as a teaching library, a living, breathing resource that supports the educational mission of the entire College. Our physical doors may be closed (for now), but our services and assistance are wide open.

For more information on how we continue to help you find this library in your place, check out our Stay Connected to the Library During the COVID-19 Emergency guide.


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