Target: Kathryn Miller, Director of the University of Florida Polytechnic Library
Goal: Praise colleges’ efforts to create more ecologically friendly libraries
Colleges across the United States consistently have libraries that hold thousands of books; however, many students do not have the time to visit the library. Universities like Florida Polytechnic are addressing this issue by going digital in their libraries. The library was modeled after NASA-run libraries and mirrors Silicon Valley’s style. Florida Polytechnic’s library will offer its students access to over 135,000 ebooks on their tablets, laptops, or readers.
Rather than have librarians focus on helping students find books and on organizing stacks of books, librarians can focus on teaching students how to find resources and utilize digital devices. Although the libraries still offer printing services, the library encourages students to go paperless even when it comes to buying textbooks. With less paper, the school can become more environmentally friendly. Nevertheless, students can still go through the library to request physical copies of books from other Florida libraries.
Students also get a chance to pick what books the librarians recommend. The library budgeted in order for students to browse books for free. If other students are interested in the same book, the library will purchase the book. Despite its futuristic approach, the library’s collection still keeps classic novels. Overall, going digital enables students to find the book they want quickly and to read more of what is related to their classes and to their personal preferences as well.
The only challenges for Florida Polytechnic’s new digital library is the constant changes that must be made to keep up with technology and updating licensing agreements. However, the future looks brighter with digital books being more available to students. Please applaud the innovation taken to create a more eco-friendly library by going digital.
Dear Ms. Miller,
I am writing to thank you for leading the University of Florida Polytechnic in its transition to become a digital library. The decision to go digital makes it easier for students to access the resources they need to learn and to create. With more time on their hands, librarians can also be more present in students’ lives and do not have to worry about monotonous tasks like reshelving books. Having the books donated to other schools in need was a smart decision as well.
I wish you the best of luck with your new digital library and thank you for doing your part to help the environment.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Kathryn Miller via Florida Polytechnic University