Elizabeth City State University has received more than $100,000 in grants for two library-related projects. The university will use the money to update the digital inventory and self-checkout systems at its G.R. Little Library as well as becoming a satellite office for the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center’s work digitizing historical documents, photographs and newspapers.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services awarded ECSU, the smallest of the UNC system’s historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), two grants as part of the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). For the library update, the university received $172,898 and $53,156 to extend its work in assisting in digitizing historical documents.
“Libraries are at the heart of our community and the university,” said Dr. Juanita Spence, ECSU Director of Library Services, in a statement Thursday. “They provide free access to information whether that’s books, resources, the internet, computers and more. We are improving the user experience through increased convenience and privacy, while also making our operations more efficient.”
In April the school announced it would use a $50,000 grant from the UNC System to revamp how they appeal to and support older students finishing their degrees. The same month, the university announced it would provide a one-time $1,000 housing grant to each student living on campus in in the Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 semesters.
The university has been seeing a period of growth, with fall 2021 enrollment up 2.6% to 2,054, the largest enrollment the school has seen since 2013. That’s still far from its peak of about 3,000 students, but with the UNC System raising the cap on out of state students for HBCUs that growth is projected to continue.
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