Give to the Libraries
"Our Wish List provides community members the opportunity to fund a selection of priority Libraries projects and resources that will enhance the educational experiences of our students and inspire them on their way to earning a Penn State degree. With your gift of $250 or more, you create a direct link between the Libraries and our services and the student body."
- Dean Barbara I. Dewey
Libraries Wish List for Students: Creating a Lasting Impact
The Wish List gives librarians the freedom to explore cutting edge, nontraditional and innovative resources for the students that may not be entirely covered in operating budgets. These unique opportunities give students a competitive advantage on their way to earning their Penn State degrees.Read More about the Wish List Technology
The Penn State University Libraries team is thrilled to announce the new and improved Wish List for our students. With gifts ranging from $250 to $14,000, the Wish List reflects the most compelling needs of students across our Commonwealth Campus and Branch Libraries.
The Wish List is a special opportunity for donors to fund important resources, events, new technologies, internships, and even the preservation of rare historical literature that may not have been possible otherwise. One of the items for purchase includes the two-day Annual Fall Open House, which is the largest student engagement event of the year, boasting attendance of over 3,000 students!
As each wish is granted for students, new and impactful needs are added, so keep checking back. Use the hashtag #PSUlibsWishList on social media to show your support for Penn State students and help the libraries grant more wishes. View the Wish List.
"Donors are vital in allowing the Library to purchase resources that are more cutting edge, innovative, and nontraditional. I have a responsibility to be a good steward of our state money and to use it purchase essential and traditional materials like databases, journals, and books. Gifts and endowment funds give me the freedom to explore what will give our students a boost without sacrificing any of the essentials." – Christina L. Wissinger Ph.D., Health Sciences Librarian
Marion Mackinnon’s Gift Leads the Way for Students With Disabilities
"As an international student who is blind and pursuing a Ph.D. in Learning Design and Technology, I am deeply indebted to University Libraries’ Adaptive Technology & Services. All tactile graphs as well as alternative text materials required for my course work are always provided to me in a timely manner, making my academic experience very enjoyable. I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to those who have supported me –giving me the strength to not give up but to keep moving forward." -Jooyoung Seo.Read More about Adaptive Technology
The University Libraries’ Marion MacKinnon Adaptive Technology and Services (ATS) facilitates inclusive access for differing students’ needs and disabilities. The private and quiet space gives students the opportunity to excel in their coursework with the technologies and assistance needed for them. The main goal of this service is to make textbooks, syllabi, and other materials for courses accessible and readable to all students.
Because of the kind generosity of Marion MacKinnon, ATS provides a unique space in Pattee Library comprised of private study rooms, extensive software, and adaptive resources – all overseen by a caring team of experts. Thanks to donor support, ATS is able to provide students with a wide range of software and hardware needed to succeed in the classroom. These services and resources allow students the independence and confidence to excel during their time at Penn State..
ATS also allows students to borrow different devices during the school year. There are graphic calculators that read aloud the numbers and solutions for visually impaired students. ATS provides a printer that prints tactile graphics and maps for visually impaired students when a visual is too hard to describe in words. This tactile graphic gives students the ability to feel the image in order to understand it better.
Jamilyn Houser, Alternative Text Specialist, assists in creating and distributing materials to students who use the services. She converts textbooks, exams, and other reading material into the appropriate forms for students.
The services support students who have registered with Student Disability Resources (SDR) in the office of the Vice Provost for Educational Equity. These students have access to the space 24/7 with the use of their student ID cards. Staff makes it comfortable and welcoming for students to work in the space and ask questions.
Want to learn more? Please contact Jamilyn Houser, email@example.com.
A Lifelong Connection: The Alumni Library Online
"The Alumni Library Online provides yet another lifelong connection to Penn State – similar to the connection many of us feel through Penn State football or other athletic programs. The Alumni Library, however, offers a virtual space for lifelong learning. In today’s society, it is increasingly important to have a place where we can go to access reliable information...Read More about Adaptive Technology
...As a result, I frequently use the Alumni Library Online to support one of my favorite hobbies – photo collecting. I am able to photo match Penn State sources to identify and confirm people, places, events, and dates. One of my most favorite places to investigate is the LaVie yearbook online database. It has been a wonderful resource for photos and general historical data, most notably from the first 2 or 3 decades of the 20th century... it was also fun to look up my grandfather who was a member of the class of 1920!” – Ross MacCallum, Penn State Alum; Consultant, TV News Production & Training, HA Design Group
Now that's a lifelong connection!
As a Penn State Alumni Association member, you have access to a large selection of online databases and resources not available to the general public through the Alumni Library Online. Established in 2005, this library is a partnership between the Penn State Alumni Association and the University Libraries. Members have access to Libraries’ Digitized Collections, as well as a selection of online databases. Since its beginning, the Alumni Library Online website has expanded to include access to University Archives, including course curriculum archives and the La Vie Yearbook, among other valuable resources.
Today, the Penn State Alumni Library Online outranks our peer institutions in services offered to alumni. Among other services, Penn State offers free Libraries card registration, Interlibrary book borrowing, and off-campus access to select journals and databases to all alumni. These provisions outpace our peer institutions across the Big Ten Academic Alliance, and those universities in the Association of Research Libraries’ Top 10 North American Research Libraries. We are the only school, among these 21 other institutions, to offer these resources to our alumni.
Looking forward, the Penn State Alumni Library Online is looking for opportunities to better elevate its resources and generate an increasingly welcoming environment for our alumni. We are proud of the partnership between the Penn State University Libraries and the Penn State Alumni Association, and we will continue to provide lifelong educational resources as the digital version of the heart of the University.
A Young Alum's Passion to Give
“University Libraries has always been an important part of my life. I used the Earth and Mineral Sciences Library as a place to decompress and work while I was on campus during my undergraduate and graduate studies. I want to do my small part to ensure that the library is accessible and a nice place to “get away” from our fast-paced lives.” -- Phil Morath, B.S. (2003) and M.S. (2007), Geosciences, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences (EMS)Read More about The Textbook Fund
Phil relied heavily on the wealth of information and resources available to him within the Earth and Mineral Sciences library, and utilized its expert staff led by Distinguished Librarian and Head of the EMS Library, Linda Musser. Phil’s story is not uncommon, as millions of students have depended on the library during their time at Penn State, but what makes Phil’s special is how his passion for the University Libraries –the EMS Library in particular –was the catalyst behind his philanthropic legacy here.
Phil took full advantage of the resources and services University Libraries has to offer to support his success as a student and as he began his career.“Penn State truly has a world-class library system. You can access information from any publication from any time period –digitally or through Interlibrary Loan. It is tough to fathom just how much information you can retrieve through the libraries at Penn State. My undergraduate thesis advisor (Dr. Tim White) and Linda Musser taught me as a first-year student how to fully utilize the resources that I had at my disposal while at Penn State. This made me a better student because I was able to thoroughly research topics for reports, even outside of my EMS classes.
I utilized these skills while I was working on my MBA and at my current employer. Just knowing what exists and how to get it provides me an advantage over my peers.”As a University Libraries donor, Phil’s generosity directly contributes to the strength and success of our student services and resources –ensuring that current and future learners have the tools they need to enrich their Penn State experience at the Libraries and beyond.
The Textbook Fund:
A Major Game Changer
“Thank you so much for providing us books for classes. It had been an incredibly difficult semester and just having books provided gave me some relief and happiness! Thank you so much – it was a big help to me and many others!” –Meghan, student patronRead More about The Textbook Fund
Each semester Penn State students face the often daunting task of purchasing required books and class materials. Unlike tuition, there is no student aid to cover these expenses. Students spend nearly $1,000 each semester on course materials – a cost that prevents 31% of students from enrolling in a class at least once while in college.
Through generous donations and support, the University Libraries has established Textbook and Educational Resources Endowments, aka the Textbook Fund, to purchase textbooks and course materials. These resources are then placed into the University Libraries’ course reserves for students to borrow.
The reality is that only about 10% of classes offered at Penn State are available on course reserves. Popular textbooks have been checked out over 200 times by more than 50 students – in one semester. The demand for course reserves far exceeds the current supply. In the last academic year (Fall ‘17/Spring ’18) 95,400 course reserves were checked out across all University Libraries’ locations.
“Often times it is very hard to attend Penn State as a minority and not be as financially stable as I’d like. Thank you supporting the Textbook Fund. It allows me to borrow books and not have to spend money on textbooks. Sometimes it can be hard to ask classmates to borrow theirs, so I really do thank you” -- Kandice, student patron
A gift to the Textbook Fund is an incredible way to put educational access into the hands of all students across all Penn State campuses. A donation will ensure that Penn State students have the critical resources they need to realize their full potential. The Textbook Fund truly is a game changer – one student, and one textbook at a time.