Library Liaisons

Library Liaisons

What is a library liaison?

A library liaison is a librarian who has been formally designated by the library to act as a contact person for individual student groups on campus. We want to make certain that students involved in Swarthmore's many diverse groups and organizations become familiar with the library, the names of the librarians, and the services and resources available to you throughout the library. We want to ensure that all student groups are aware of potential valuable information resources for their areas of interest that may enable you to further educate and promote your group to current and prospective members. There's lots of ways a library liaison can support your student group.

What can a library liaison do for our student group?

Building the library collection

Your library liaison will actively solicit purchase suggestions from your group and will try to keep an eye open for books that we might add to the library's collection. While we spend most of our acquisition dollars on material that supports the curriculum of the college and obtain a lot of our recommendations from faculty, we feel that student groups often echo curricular interests and/or support the life of the college in ways that should be reflected in our collection.

Helping to arrange an exhibit in the library

McCabe Library welcomes exhibit ideas from student groups and your liaison can assist you with the process of requesting exhibit space and time. Exhibits, whether they reside in the six glass cases in the McCabe lobby or the two vertical cases in the coffee bar, offer a unique opportunity to present the ideas, goals, and scope of your group to the campus community at large.

Offering reference assistance

Your library liaison has a passion for information, and the expertise to do sophisticated search and retrieval on all varieties of topics. If your group has a question, you will have easy access to someone who may be able to find the answer for you.

Creating bibliographies or research guides

Your liaison can assist you in the creation of guides (print/online) that may be of use to the group or in your efforts to educate yourselves or others about hot topics.

Sharing information

As your liaison becomes more familiar with the scope and interests of your group, s/he will be able to pass along web sites, books, journal articles, grant opportunities, etc. of interest.

What are the guidelines for involvement?

All student groups will be assigned a library liaison. We will make every effort to assign a librarian who has at least a passing interest or expertise in your group. So, for example, the music librarian will be the liaison to music groups, etc. To participate in this liaison program, you should provide your liaison with the contact person or chair of your group and be willing to invite your liaison to at least one meeting or group event per semester.

Who should I contact to get involved?

For further information, please contact Anne Garrison, Humanities Librarian, x8492. Remember, we're here to help!