GCC library awarded $20K through COVID Library Relief Fund

Posted 15 October 2022 at 9:15 am

Photo courtesy of GCC: The Alfred C. O’Connell Library at GCC in Batavia has been awarded $20,000 from the COVID Library Relief Fund of the American Library Association.

Press Release, Genesee Community College

BATAVIA – Genesee Community College’s Alfred C. O’Connell library is pleased to announce the receipt of a $20,000 grant from the COVID Library Relief Fund of the American Library Association.

The ALA made available $1.55 million in emergency relief grants to 77 libraries that have experienced substantial economic hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic. These funds are intended to bolster library operations and services including broadening technology access, developing collections, providing digital instruction, staffing, and expanding outreach, as well as maintaining and amplifying existing service strategies or adding new ones to extend impact through the end of 2022.

When the opportunity arose, it was an easy decision to apply for the grant.

“Since the pandemic we have been operating with fewer resources and the ALA funds will allow us to streamline essential systems. We are grateful for the monetary assistance,” said Jessica Hibbard, Associate Dean of Library and Instructional Support Services at Genesee.

The library plans to use the funds to enhance the library’s engagement with the campus and GLOW region community by hosting several events and workshops, including the return of the poetry and photography contests.

Upgrades to the library’s study room spaces feature new furniture and wall-mounted tablets to support an on-demand reservation system using the college’s booking software, providing greater access for students and less staff time spent in scheduling.

The grant also provided enhanced streaming media and database access for some of the academic programs on campus, most notably the purchase of Visible Body, a database that supports online lab instruction for health care programs.

As learning migrated online, streaming media is increasingly essential for coursework and the ALA funds made it possible for students to access videos for projects in general education courses such as cinema, history, journalism and musical theory/appreciation courses.

“This grant cycle has a short window so we have already started to get some of these projects underway and are very thankful for the opportunity to make some enhancements in the library that we otherwise would not have been able to,” Hibbard said.