With A Little Help From Our Friends

Scholarship shared, one book at a time (photo by Victoria Reyz, Library Assistant)

I’m not a big fan of numbers, but here’s one I found to be interesting.  In the calendar year 2013-2014, Touro Libraries added 8,364*  new books to our holdings.  (“Holdings” – from the language of librarianship, meaning stuff we own.)  That’s a load of books.  For the most part, these were items which we purchased, selected by site librarians to support classes taught at their specific Touro locations.  (For example, Midtown has strength in education, Jewish studies, social work, psychology, clinical medicine, and profession specific literature for physician assistants, physical therapy, and occupational therapy. To see the strengths of your location, find it on the list, then click on “more information”.)

Just like on our birthdays, every so often we get presents for no particular reason.  Touro College and University Systems is home to many faculty and staff authors who have given our libraries the physical manifestations of their intellectual property.  Thanks guys, we love being gifted with books!  Those above are a small example.

You don’t have to be an author to be a benefactor.  Several supporters of our library have donated their entire personal libraries, or the books of a family member, to our collection.  Additionally, several generous individuals have purchased sizable quantities of books for Touro Libraries, specifically to enhance the strength of our collection.  In these cases, we have honored our donors with commemorative bookplates. ‘

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You can still be charitable even if you do not have an entire library to donate.  Although we can’t guarantee your books will be added to our collection, we always have a need for current textbooks, as we do not routinely purchase them.   Professors often have spare copies of these, which they contribute to the library for the reading enjoyment of their students.  You can do the same.  We will gladly accept donations of recently used textbooks that are in good condition.   Shelf space and need permitting, your contribution will be processed by the Technical & Electronic Services Department for permanent placement in a Touro branch library.  See our Guidelines for Donation for more information.

In the event that we cannot keep your donation, do not be dismayed.  We will find a home for your sad, lonely book.  For the past two years, Touro Libraries has been partnering with Better World Books, an online bookseller that recycles library discards and donated books.  Part of the funds acquired by selling withdrawn materials goes back to the Library, while some money is used to support literacy programs domestically and abroad.  Over 3,000 libraries are partnering with this company, which only goes to show that we are in good company. It’s a good thing.


* Statistical assistance courtesy of Liping Wang, Cataloging Librarian

‘  Bookplate hunting courtesy of Tova Friedman, Library Assistant



Contributed by: Carol Schapiro, Librarian, Midtown Library

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