Librarian Exchange Program: A Partnership Between ASERL & the HBCU Library Alliance

The HBCU Library Alliance was founded in 2003 with support from SOLINET (now LYRASIS) and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.  The HBCU Library Alliance represents the 103 libraries serving  Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the US, many of which are located in the same states as ASERL libraries.  An overarching goal of the Alliance is to build library leadership within the community.  A key activity to fulfill this goal is the Leadership Institute that was launched in 2005 and continues today.

One component of the HBCU Library Alliance’s Leadership Institute is the Librarian Exchange Program in partnership with ASERL.  The first set of Exchanges took place in the Summer of 2006, and were repeated with new participants in 2008 and 2010.  Each exchange includes significant time on-site at the partner libraries — typically about two weeks — to design and plan to implement a project that is strategically important to the HBCU library.  By identifying, analyzing, designing and implementing these projects, both ASERL and HBCU librarians gain valuable insight into the workings of each other’s library, and build new project management and leadership skills.  Many participants have fostered long-lasting, beneficial relationships between both individual librarians and between their libraries.  Travel costs for participating librarians to visit their partner’s library during the Exchange are covered by grant funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to the HBCU Library Alliance.

Exchange Participants

2006: College of William & Mary / University of Virgin Islands;  University of Kentucky / Fisk University; University of Louisville / Florida A&M University;  University of Tennessee / Fayetteville State University;  Wake Forest University / North Carolina A&T University.

2008: North Carolina State University / Mississippi Valley State University;  University of Kentucky / Southern University;  University of Mississippi / Bowie State University;  University of North Carolina at Greensboro / Lawson State Community College;  University of Florida / Xavier University.

2010: Duke University / Johnson C. Smith University;  East Carolina University / Claflin University;  George Mason University / Atlanta University Center; University of Florida / Southern University;  University of North Carolina at Greensboro / South University at New Orleans;  Virginia Commonwealth University / North Carolina A&T University.