The Enterprise Public Library received a Library Services and Technology Act Grant recently in the amount of $10,000 for collection development.
“When I got here I received suggestions (and) complaints of our how our nonfiction was lacking,” EPL Director Shelia Harris said. “Several students have come in saying, ‘Hey, we have to cite a printed book,’ when they were doing research for term papers and things of that nature.”
Out of the $10,000 the library will receive, $8,000 comes from LSTA and $2,000 will come from the Friends of the Library. The focus of the grant will be to buy more adult and juvenile nonfiction books as well as some other general collection items.
As part of the grant, EPL will be closed Jan. 6-8 for a complete inventory of all the books and materials the library owns.
“I always try to keep the mission of the library, which is to serve everyone,” Harris said. “So when I start seeing a number of suggestions and on top of that, Alabama Public Library (System) when they came down and checked on us—so to speak—she realized we haven’t had an inventory in over 20 something years.”
As far as Harris knows, the library has around 60,000 items in its circulation, but this will be the first time that every item will be scanned and entered into the library’s digital Atrium system.
“The unique thing about Atrium is that when it (an item) is checked in, it will add it to our inventory,” Harris said. “That’s what’s really great about doing it in this system is it’s like you should have this but you scanned it and we don’t see it. This is the first time we’ve done it digitally.”
Harris said that knowing what is in the library’s inventory can help the library make better purchasing decisions using the grant money.
“So that was the purpose of writing the grant to get the funds,” Harris said. “So that once we complete the inventory, we have the funds to go back and start getting in some current DIY, some current theology—theology is heavily requested—real estate books, I mean they just run the gamut.”
Harris said the inventory, the grant and the focus on purchasing nonfiction materials is all part of her focus to keep with the library’s mission “to serve everyone.”