Got News?

The Florida Academic Library Services Cooperative would like to give your institution the credit it deserves. We’re happy to share news of special events, improvements, and achievements from the libraries of our state’s public colleges and universities.

Just drop us an email


August 2020

FALSC: Success Stories

FALSC Success Stories

Service Learning at Indian River State College

Service learning is an educational approach that combines learning with community service. The concept behind “IRSC and the Digital Archive: Digitizing Local History" is that students get practical experiences in the digital humanities, while also serving the community, by making archival sources available to researchers and the public.

Booker T Washington Grauadting Class 1950-1951

An Anniversary and a Grant

The 2018 to 2019 academic year was the 70th anniversary of Pensacola State College (PSC) opening. In honor of that anniversary, the library set out to showcase college history. A main goal was to allow alumni and the public to be able to access PSC's history materials without having to physically travel to campus.

February 2020

From UF$1.2 Million Digization Project Expands Access to Newspapers in Florida and the Caribbean

The Florida & Puerto Rico Digital Newspaper Project (FPRDNP) has officially come to an end. A collaborative $923,000 project between the University of Florida (UF) George A. Smathers Libraries and the University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras (UPR-RP) library system, the FPRDNP has provided access to hundreds of digitized pages of historic newspapers from Florida and Puerto Rico that were previously found only on microfilm.

From 2013 to 2019, the project has provided access to more than 300,000 pages of newspapers from 14 newspaper titles published in Florida and four newspaper titles from Puerto Rico. The Pensacola Journal, the Daytona Daily News, the Florida Agriculturist, the Key West Citizen, Gaceta de Puerto Rico, and La Correspondencia de Puerto Rico are among the publications now available to the public.

Though the FPRNDP has ended, newspaper digitization efforts for the state and its Caribbean partners continue. In August 2019, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) awarded the UF Libraries $309,000 (bringing the project total to over $1.2million) to continue its digitization efforts alongside UPR-RP under the US Caribbean & Ethnic Florida Newspaper Project (USCFNP). This new collaborative project builds on the efforts of the FPRDNP to continue digitizing historic newspapers from the territory and state, with a focus on digitizing ethnic newspapers from Florida. The USCFNP also expands the scope of the FPRDNP to include digitization of historic newspapers published in the Virgin Islands with the help from a new partner, the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI).

The USCFNP will run from September 2019 to August 2021. All digitized content will be text-searchable and freely accessible in Chronicling America (, a site created and maintained by the Library of Congress for the National Digital Newspaper Program, as well as via the Florida Digital Newspaper Library ( and the Digital Library of the Caribbean (

To view previously digitized content, visit Chronicling America and the UF Digital Collections ( For more information about the project visit

Originally published at:


From USFSpecial Collections: #LibrariesLove: USF Women's Club

The tradition of giving back to USF started before the University of South Florida opened its doors, when in late summer 1960, the USF Women’s Club held their first meeting.

Grace Allen, wife of USF’s founding President Dr. John Allen, hosted the meeting in her home as a way to invite women at the University, particularly non-working wives of faculty, to participate in supporting USF. This was during a time when many women didn’t work, and the club’s dual social and service roles gave women an opportunity to connect and enhance their relationships on campus.

Initially, the club was mostly social, with hundreds of interest groups to choose from (e.g. bridge, bird watching, supper, etc.) but it always had a service feature. Their fundraising initially supported student book scholarships and now supports so much more.

“Well, you give a book scholarship that lets one person buy books, but if you give to the library, then many people can use the books….” – Susan Vastine, former USF Tampa Librarian and Women’s Club member since 1965 (Oral History Interview, University of South Florida, USF Women’s Club Collection)

The club created an endowment in Allen’s name, the Grace Allen Library Endowment, to support our Libraries in 1992, and over the many years, has purchased many technologies, room renovations, scholarly materials, and more to support instruction and research. They have an additional endowment, the Grace Allen Scholarship Fund, that awards several full-tuition scholarships to non-traditional-age students every year.

“Since the USF Women’s Club was founded nearly 60 years ago, our purpose has been to enhance the University community through service projects. Helping the Library is essential to raising the stature of the University itself, and we maintain a Library Endowment. More than that, we take a great deal of pride in seeing how our support of the Library helps improve the students’ quality of education.” – Rose Killinger, USF Women’s Club member since 1987

Some of the club’s library endowment purchases have included the Book Review Index Online Plus, an electronic digital resource of over 1.2 million book reviews dating back to 1983, and the Tampa Library’s digital display boards on the 4th and 5th floors, helping our faculty, staff, students, and visitors stay informed on Library happenings, events, and collections.

The operating fund the club established in 2016 specifically supports the Grace Allen Room (GAR), the 4th floor conference space dedicated to their founder. The room offers presentation systems that include a projector, lecture podium, microphone, and wireless touch screen.

“Our main purpose is raising money for scholarships, and, having fun too. And several years ago, we started an endowment fund for the Library, and we raised funds for some of the stuff in the Grace Allen Room.” – Sandie DeSalvo, USF Women’s Club member since 1983

We here at the USF Libraries are grateful for the years of continued support from the USF Women’s Club, and are proud to host their club archives in our Special Collections – which include yearbooks, meeting minutes, articles, and other ephemera available for research and instruction.

The club welcomes new members, and general meetings are held on campus. Social engagements, such as book group, supper club, and bridge, are hosted off campus. For more information contact

Thank you USF Women’s Club for all that you do for the University of South Florida and for giving our #LibrariesLove!

Originally published at:


From UCFTheir 21st Century Library!

Phase IA, the newest improvement to the John C. Hitt Library, will open Spring 2020. This 57,000 square foot space features the following:

  • 1,055 new public seats in a variety of configurations from quiet to collaborative
  • A new eight (8) door entrance, which will shorten travel time to the library from the Student Union. The “legacy entrance” at the reflection pond will remain open, thus offering two entrances into the library
  • Two new instruction rooms – including one active learning classroom which features a collaborative, technology-rich learning environment– one featuring an active learning design to allow the instructor to walk about coaching students
  • Seven new group study rooms.
  • Beautiful 4th floor “Reading Room” on top of the ARC, featuring 270-degree views of campus and 235 seats. This will be a special place with enhanced finishes.
  • New Circulation Services desk at the front entrance and adjacent to the ARC .  This proximity will allow delivery of library materials stored in the ARC to patrons in less than 10 minutes.
  • A multipurpose assembly room with seating for 120 in several configurations
  • 84 desktop PC stations
  • Special Collections & University Archives’ exhibition space to display art, rare collection material and archival materials
  • The new plaza on the north side merges seamlessly with the Student Union Plaza and the John T. Washington Center, and includes landscaped beds and built-in seating.

    With the opening of Phase IA, the main Circulation Services desk will move to the new main entrance. The Library “LibTech desk”, currently on the 3rd floor, will rotate down to the previous Circulation desk on 2nd floor, and will anchor the south entrance to the John C. Hitt Library facing the reflection pond.

Phase IA planning took several years and included feedback from students to address many needs including: 

  • More general seating to alleviate crowding in the existing Library. Many of these seats will have power at arm’s reach to keep mobile devices charged. 
  • More spaces for group collaboration
  • Additional quiet study areas
  • More ways to move vertically within the building, including a bank of three elevators and a glass encased staircase for heightened visibility. The existing stairwells are hidden and tend to be forgotten when coming into the building. 

We hope this space will be enjoyed by the UCF community for many years to come.  Stay tuned for opening announcements this spring!


July 2019

Two Colleges Have New Names

During the past legislative session, House Bill #525 was introduced, passed, and signed into law renaming two of Florida's State Colleges. Effective July 1, 2019, Florida Keys Community College will now be The College of the Florida Keys and North Florida Community College will now be North Florida College. These name changes were requested by their respective Boards of Trustees to in order to better reflect the coursework and degrees currently offered at their institutions.



March 2019

Daytona State College Opens New Library

The new L. Gale Lemerand Student Center opened on March 18, 2019 as scheduled.  It is an eye catching, three-story, 84,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility.  The building sits at the main entrance of Daytona State College.

The student center holds the following:  Academic Support Center, cafeteria, Career Services, classrooms, coffee lounge, conference rooms, event space, game rooms, Library, outside dining area, Student Activities, study commons and the Writing Center.

The Student Center is located next to building 100 where admissions and registration are located.  After students have completed their admissions and registration process, they can immediately join other students here.

We are very excited to see students engaging with one another.  One student views the Student Center as a “college playground” where they can be in contact over breakfasts, lunches and/or snacks.

January 2019

USF-St. Pete Library Receives $1 Million From Donor

According to an article in the Tampa Bay Times, Josephine Hall, a long-time resident of St. Petersburg and frequent patron of the Nelson Poynter Memorial Library, passed away in November 2017 at the age of 98. A life-long patron of the arts, she left the university $2 million, of which half is pledged to the library. The full story of this wonderful gift can be found here.


Part of FAU’s Wimberly Library Gets a Modern Makeover

The fourth floor of the Wimberly Library is officially open after renovations were completed over winter break. The quiet study space, which once had carpeted floors and wooden furniture, was redesigned to be more modern with tiled floors, new study carrels, and increased access to natural light.  

The overall goal was to renovate the fourth floor to provide a brighter, more comfortable quiet study zone after receiving feedback from FAU students during our 2018 Student Satisfaction Survey.  

“For the past three years, the Libraries have been redesigning spaces to be both more functional and more inviting,” said Carol Hixson, Dean of the University Libraries. “The fourth floor redesign showcases the commitment of the Libraries to improving the total experience for FAU’s students.” 

The redesign planning began in the summer of 2018, after student survey results indicated that the fourth floor was the least favorite study spot in the library. Over 30 percent of students also requested more study areas, white boards, comfortable chairs, and better access to power. The transformed space now offers all of these amenities.   

There are 28 new study carrels in addition to the 40 that were previously on the floor. The new carrels are equipped with duplex outlets, which allows 56 devices to be plugged in at one time. For those looking for a more relaxed study spot, there are now 13 additional comfortable chairs. Painted bookshelf ends and a more open floor plan provided the finishing touches to make the space more inviting.

The fourth floor was designed with the students in mind. That’s why we expect it to become one of our most popular study areas within the library.


UCF Continues with Its 21st Century Library

Over the past few years, a major renovation has been underway at the John C. Hitt Library on the main campus. The multi-faceted project is designed to support the explosive growth in enrollment the university has experienced over the past two decades. The first phase was completed in July 2018 and included the construction of an Automated Retrieval Center (ARC), a high-capacity storage facility capable of holding 1.25 million volumes. Students and faculty can request materials from the ARC and the system quickly retrieves them for use. This system is the first of its kind in Florida.

The next phase of the renovation project will be to connect the ARC to the existing library via a “Connector” building, which will include a new entrance to the library, new library instruction classes, a multipurpose room and addition space for students. More phases are planned in the years ahead. Click here to get the latest information, see plans of the entire renovation, and view several videos of the ARC in action.


UF Smathers Libraries Receive Major Gift of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings – Julia Scribner Bigham Correspondence

A collection of personal and professional correspondence between Pulitzer Prize-winning author Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings (1896-1953) and her literary executor Julia Scribner Bigham has been donated as an addition to the Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Papers in the Department of Special and Area Studies Collections. Also included in this gift is a collection of letters concerning the literary estate and the posthumous publication of some of Rawlings’s works.  See the full article here.


February 2018

Three Cheers for SCF!

Congratulations are in order for State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF), on its new Bradenton Campus Library and Learning Center, which has opened to great approval from outside observers and that most highly valued of constituencies – students. The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports in a Feb. 5 article on the opening, “Students flowed into the new library as if it had been there since they first came to the campus.” As one young man was quoted, “My first impression is that it looks awesome. … It’s creative and inclusive, and I feel like it will generate great ideas for students.”

Director of Library Services Meg Hawkins told the newspaper, “We wanted to make spaces that the students felt good being in. We didn’t want it to be a book warehouse.”

Glass wrapped and featuring copious space for study, the new $17.6 million building was 18 months in the making. Find a video of the structure on the library’s Facebook page.




January 2018

New Library Takes a Star Turn

The Bradenton Herald shines a spotlight on State College of Florida (SCF) Manatee-Sarasota’s new Library & Learning Center, set to open in February on the Bradenton Campus, in a Jan. 5 article about the college’s “new brand” focusing on increased community engagement. “We want to position our college at the center of the economic, educational, and cultural life of our community,” SCF President Carol Probsfeld told the Herald. She calls the Bradenton library “the most significant building we have built in the last 25 years and the next 25 years on this campus,” the newspaper reports.


November 2017

Sunshine State Digital Network Launch Announced

Florida State University Libraries, Florida International University, and the University of Miami have teamed up to launch the Sunshine State Digital Network (SSDN). As detailed in an FSU Libraries post on Nov. 17: “The SSDN is part of the Digital Public Library of America, and FSU is proud to be the service hub for the state of Florida. The service hub represents a community of institutions in the state which will provide their partner institutions aggregated metadata for the DPLA and offer tiered services to connect institutions of all sizes to DPLA.”

To learn more about this exciting new initiative, which will “provide digital access to over 72,000 cultural heritage materials from across the state of Florida,” see  FSU Libraries’ full post or visit the Sunshine State Digital Network website.


Universities Join EBSCO Open-Access Initiative

Florida State University and the University of Florida are among the institutions named as participants in, a new collaborative open-access initiative undertaken by EBSCO Information Services and partner BiblioLabs, according to a news release., which will go live in 2018, is intended to help make electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) “as widely visible and cited as possible” while directing additional traffic to ETDs in institutional repositories. The program is free for authors and participating institutions.


October 2017

USF Team Uses 3D Imaging to Document Historic Forts

A team of researchers from the Digital Heritage and Humanities Collections of the University of South Florida (USF) Libraries is working with the National Park Service to use 3D imaging to capture St. Augustine’s historic Castillo de San Marcos and Fort Matanzas. The work is intended to aid efforts to preserve and protect the two masonry forts, both designated as national monuments.

Led by Dr. Lori Collins and Dr. Travis Doering, USF researchers will use lasers to create 3D images of the interiors and exteriors of the structures. “We’re basically doing a full-scale 3D documentation survey,” Collins told WTLV-TV for an article posted Oct. 18. “Even things that are very hard to detect or see with the human eye, we can pick out with these types of instruments,” she said. “We can collect everything from really, half a human hair kind of accuracy, all the way up to 330 meters of landscape.”

Hurricane Irma’s recent impact on St. Augustine increased concern about the risk of storm damage to the sites.


Donation to Fund Room at New Bradenton Campus Library

The philanthropic organization Together Manatee has donated $25,000 for a community room at the new Library & Learning Center under construction at the Bradenton Campus of State College of Florida, Sarasota-Manatee, according to a news release. The donation qualifies for matching by the State College of Florida Foundation and the college’s Board of Trustees, which will bring total funds for the space to $50,000. The “Together Manatee” community room is intended to serve both campus and community, and will offer multiple visual displays, LED monitors, teleconferencing, and video/audio capture. The multi-use space will accommodate up to 200 people. The new library is expected to open in early 2018.


OER a Win for Santa Fe College

Today@Santa Fe reports that Santa Fe College, in Gainesville, has saved students more than $1 million in textbook costs through the use of open educational resources (OER) since tracking of the savings began. The number of sections using OER more than doubled from Fall 2016 to Fall 2017, going from 98 to 207.


Connect With FALSC