These are exciting times for academic libraries! As libraries move away from being gatekeepers of information, they have an opportunity to become more directly involved in the teaching and learning process in creative ways. I like to think of a library as a scholarly workshop or knowledge laboratory where students are not only studying and receiving traditional research assistance, but also engaged in a diverse set of activities that promote multimedia and digital literacies. Some of these include digital storytelling, designing and displaying posters and promoting social justice, environmental and cultural awareness and activism.
All of these activities can work together to form a richer library experience, one that provides students with a full range of 21st century skills. For me as a Director, the key is just the willingness to think about information literacy more broadly, to be open-minded and take risks, but above all, to be exploratory. I am excited to partner with students and faculty to create a more student-centered library, characterized by multiple modes of learning and extra-textual literacies, and made compelling through active, visual demonstration of research and knowledge.
Libraries are rapidly evolving into places where students are provided tools, resources and guidance to not only access information, but to produce and display their original ideas. My goal is to align the Mercy Libraries firmly at the forefront of this amazing moment.
Director of Mercy College Libraries