Case Western Reserve University’s Kelvin Smith Library (KSL) has won the 2019 Excellence in Academic Libraries Award from the Association of College & Research Libraries alongside Swarthmore College Libraries and The College of Western Idaho Library. The Award is given to academic libraries whose staff provide exemplary services to library visitors.
The award is given in three categories: college, community college and university. KSL won in the university category for its problem solving, especially in regards to research and advocacy for the community.
This strength was demonstrated through KSL’s many programs and offerings, with highlights including the Freedman Fellowship for Digital Scholarship and the National Personal Librarian Conference. The Freedman Fellowship in particular has awarded more than $90,000 to over 50 faculty members.
These funds were used to research and create many beneficial projects, including a sexual assault kit initiative using ArcGIS visual mapping software to plot assault data, undergraduate student research on race and education in Cleveland Heights and 3D imaging of artifacts from the Cleveland Museum of Natural History to increase their accessibility through a virtual reality experience.
“The library not only embodies their strategic plan goals of research, learn and experience in everything they do, but also is user feedback driven to ‘continuously redesign the library to ensure that new generations of students continue to respond positively so that they see the library as being their library,’” Irene M. H. Herold, the chair of the 2019 Excellence in Academic Libraries Award Committee, told the Daily.