Nation’s library workers transforming lives, communities - Celebrate National Library Workers Day April 12
For Immediate Release
Media Relations Specialist
Public Awareness Office
American Library Association
CHICAGO – Our nation’s library workers provide an invaluable public service to our communities by connecting library users with the books, information and critical technology resources they need to thrive in the digital age. April 12 is National Library Workers Day (NLWD), a time to show appreciation for library staff and the contributions they make in transforming lives and communities through education and lifelong learning.
Library professionals support individual opportunity and community progress, working in all types of libraries, including academic, public, school, government and special libraries such as military and prison libraries.
Academic librarians play a critical role in student learning and academic success. Today’s academic librarians teach information literacy skills to help students navigate the growing volume of information on the Web. For example a librarian at the Willis Library at the University of North Texas in Denton lived in a freshman dorm one year as part of his outreach efforts to assist students with research questions such as evaluating a website as a legitimate source or identifying valid and reliable data and teaching them how to access library resources remotely. He continues to be available to students by setting up office hours in public areas across campus.
Public librarians are expanding beyond their traditional roles and providing more opportunities for community engagement and delivering new services that connect closely with patrons’ needs. No longer just keepers of the books, public librarians are helping artists and inventors produce their own 3D models of artwork and record music and videos. They also provide a range of workshops, from learning to use social media to grant writing. At the Kansas City (Missouri) Public Library’s Lucile H. Bluford Branch, a librarian created a health and wellness program for local residents, many of whom struggle with obesity and diabetes. The library now hosts exercise, healthy eating and cooking classes as well as fitness and weight loss challenges.
School librarians work with every student in the school, teaching critical thinking skills, providing resources and support for school and beyond and nurturing their creativity. Strong school library programs instill confidence in reading in multiple formats, which is fundamental to reading, personal growth and enjoyment. A school library media coordinator at Armstrong Elementary School in Eastover, North Carolina, promotes learning by directing fun activities such as the Battle of the Books, a reading competition with other schools in the county, and the Armstrong News Network, a daily morning news broadcast presented by students. Her efforts have helped raise student reading scores.
To show appreciation for library workers and the work they do every day, the public is invited to “Submit a Star” by providing a testimonial about a favorite library employee at ala-apa.org/nlwd/#galaxy. Examples of nominations can include how library staff helped with learning a new technology, writing a cover letter, starting a small business or researching a topic for a term paper. Each testimonial (listing first names, library type and city/state location only) will be posted in the “Galaxy of Stars” on the NLWD website to honor deserving library workers. To follow or post on Twitter, the public can use the hashtag #librarystars.In addition, those celebrating National Library Workers Day can share their celebrations on Twitter, using #nlwd16 and/or posting to the NLWD Facebook page facebook.com/NationalLibraryWorkersDay. For more information, please visit ala-apa.org/nlwd/.
Established in 2004, the purpose of National Library Workers Day is to acknowledge all library employees, including librarians and support staff and others who make library service possible every day. NLWD is held annually during National Library Week (April 10 – 16).
National Library Week is an annual observance by the American Library Association and libraries across the country each April. In addition to National Library Workers Day, National Library Week celebrations also include the release of the American Library Association’s 2016 “State of America’s Libraries Report,” April 11 and National Bookmobile Day, April 13.
The ALA-APA is a nonprofit professional organization established “to promote the mutual professional interests of librarians and other library workers.” The ALA-APA is a companion organization to the American Library Association, which is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 58,000 members. The mission of the American Library Association is to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.
For more information or to schedule interviews, please contact Macey Morales, deputy director of the ALA Public Awareness Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-280-4393; or Heather Cho, media relations specialist, ALA Public Awareness Office at email@example.com or 312-280-4020.
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