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TL v59n1:History of the Library at Nashville State Community College
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Tennessee Libraries 

Volume 59 Number 1
 

 2009

 

History of the Library at Nashville State Community College

by

Margaret Faye Jones, Dean for Learning Resources

 

Nashville State Technical Institute opened on White Bridge Road in 1970, a part of the Board of Education. The Educational Resource Center began with a staff of two librarians. Diane Groves was the director. Librarians had faculty status and served on campus-wide committees, advised students, and taught classes as well as developed the initial library collection.

In 1978, Carolyn Householder was made director of the ERC and had a staff of three librarians and five support staff, including two audiovisual technicians, one graphic artist, and two clerical staff. A Learning Lab/Testing Center was established, and the Learning Resource Center (LRC) became a division of the college. During Carolyn Householder’s tenure, the educational resource center made many advances, including:

  • reclassifying the collection from Dewey to Library of Congress,
  • teaching the first WWW/internet workshops on NSTI’s campus,
  • coordinating the development of video courses on campus
  • incorporating an automated online public access catalog as well as a totally automated library system, making it the first academic library in the state to do so. The ERC also became the first customer of the SIRSI automated system, which is now a leader in the library automation field.

In 1989, the library moved into a new building and incorporated the Learning Center and the Testing Center. The new area provided additional space and gave the staff more room to work. In 1995, James Veatch became the division head for the library area. Accomplishments during this period included the internet cataloging initiative; 13,000 internet sites were accessed through online catalogue. Electronic books began being added to the collection.

The 21st century began with a series of reorganizations that resulted in the present administrative structure.  The library now is part of the Learning Resources area, which also includes the Learning Center, Testing Center, Instructional Services, and Online Learning. There is now a dean of Learning Resources, Margaret Faye Jones. In 2003, the library was named for Tennessee Board of Regent Jane Kisber.  The past few years have seen the Kisber library grow even more:

  • he addition of a proxy server allowed off-campus students to access databases with only their ID numbers, a much simpler process which increased student usage.
  • Librarians have served as embedded librarians for online courses.
  • In 2008, an instructional librarian was hired to emphasize the role that instruction plays in helping students make sense of the myriad of information possibilities that are in front of them.

No story of the NSCC Kisber Library would be complete without mentioning the Bean Bash. This event, taking place each January, is so entrenched that no one quite remembers how long it’s been going on, but easily more than two decades. Each year, after the return of faculty from winter break, the library hosts a campus-wide feast of beans, slaw, and desserts. Faculty and staff bring their own favorite recipes, and everyone enjoys a couple of hours of community and good food before the hard work of a new semester begins. As the college grows, more faculty and staff comment that this is one of the few times that faculty and staff can get together.  The library is proud to be the maintainer of a campus tradition.


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