Appalachian Links: Libraries, Collections, Campus and Community
The migration of Appalachians to urban areas during the early and mid-20th century is having ripple effects to this day. One manifestation of this is the interest in Appalachian Studies by both academics and laypersons alike. Building a library collection in support of a unique regional academic program offers librarians a rich opportunity to collaborate with faculty members and other campus departments. One campus’ introduction of an emerging Appalachian Studies program offered the campus librarian the challenge of identifying and acquiring materials appropriate for supporting studies in that academic area. It also offered the library an opportunity to demonstrate to the administration its desire to help make the program a success. Building a collection practically from the ground up allows librarians to become subject specialists while simultaneously adding value to the new academic program. “Build it and they will come” is an aphorism that doesn’t always hold true in the world of academic library materials, especially fledgling collections. Getting the word out about the collection is vital to the success of the undertaking. Marketing strategies need not be expensive but should be well thought out and reflect a targeted approach. In summary, creating an inaugural collection affords librarians significant occasions to forge partnerships that stretch in many directions. Such alliances are key to raising awareness of the library’s mission to the campus and surrounding community. Highlights of such endeavors will be showcased in this poster session.
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