Mission & Governance
Our mission drives us to provide exceptional library services to The Claremont Colleges.
We partner with faculty, students, and staff to provide content and services in support of all forms of intellectual engagement and inquiry across The Claremont Colleges consortium. We are focused on creating a dynamic, equitable and welcoming presence for our users, honoring the diverse voices–and varied lived experiences–of our community and constituencies. To fulfill our purpose we:
- Collaborate with the colleges to advance their educational missions
- Understand and meet the information needs of faculty, students, and staff
- Provide our users with seamless and enduring access to the world of knowledge
- Foster new research at the colleges and make it freely available and easily discoverable to the global community through open access
- Empower our users to navigate the complexities of the scholarly information landscape to maximize their success
- Sponsor creative and exciting publications, exhibitions, programs, and events that are designed to stimulate intellectual curiosity, captivate audiences, and lead to new scholarly collaborations
- Support our innovative librarians and staff to improve advocacy for user needs by continually developing their knowledge, skills, and expertise
Library governance includes three key stakeholder groups: students, faculty, and administration. The Library Agreement outlines the governance of the Library, including responsibilities of the Lead College and Lead Dean for the Library, the CEO of The Claremont Colleges Services, and the Library Dean. The Library seeks advice from students and faculty through the Faculty Library Advisory Committee (FLAC), and the Board of Student Stakeholders (BOSS). In our communications with all stakeholders, the Library is routinely engaged in strategic conversations to ensure our mission is successful in supporting The Claremont Colleges through research, teaching, and learning.
Faculty Library Advisory Committee (FLAC) serves under the charge of the Academic Deans Committee (ADC) to provide input and feedback regarding the current and future activities of The Claremont Colleges Library. FLAC provides guidance to the library on faculty and student research, teaching, and learning needs. By strengthening relationships, collaboration, and communication between the library and the faculty, FLAC seeks to promote the value of the library to the colleges.
Board of Student Stakeholders (BOSS) is a committee of Claremont Colleges students who meet monthly to provide input on library services, policies, collections, spaces, programming, and technology. Members of BOSS provide feedback on current library initiatives, and serve as ambassadors and advocates for the Library across the 7Cs. They work together every year to complete a $3000 library improvement project of their choice. Currently on hiatus, since 2021.
Our Core Values explain why we take such pride in our work. They are the source of our passion, energy, professionalism, and productivity. These commonly shared values guide everything we do.
The Library’s current Strategy Articulation Map extends the previous version to allow staff more time to work on the initiatives and covers 2022-2023. This will give us a chance to adjust to being back on site, onboard new staff, and appropriately plan for the next comprehensive, staff-wide strategic planning process.
The Claremont Colleges Library is committed to protecting the privacy of all library users in accordance with the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights and Code of Ethics. The library has policies in place to ensure that we “protect each library user’s right to privacy and confidentiality with respect to information sought or received and resources consulted, borrowed, acquired or transmitted.” (ALA Office of Intellectual Freedom). The library also has procedures in place to enact these policies. The library will continuously assess and amend procedures as technology and legal changes arise. The library may store personally identifiable information in its computer systems including, but not limited to, the integrated library management system, in order to perform essential tasks such as facilitating circulation of materials and providing access to online resources. We do not archive or otherwise maintain the borrowing history of our users in our main library system. The library collects anonymized data on user behavior and usage of information resources in order to best serve our community of scholars. We are committed to ensuring that our external vendors and other partners protect the privacy of our users. In accordance with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, 50 U.S.C. 1861, as amended by the USA PATRIOT ACT (Public Law 107-56), the library may be obligated to release personally identifiable information to federal law enforcement agents, if requested. This same law prohibits the library from informing individuals if such a request has been made. We endeavor to have no personally identifiable information to release. Use of the library’s website and linked information resources implies agreement with this policy
The dedication of Carnegie Library, Smiley Hall, and Brackett Observatory was held as one ceremony in 1908 during Pomona College’s twentieth year. Perhaps the most significant of the three was the Carnegie Library, funded by a grant from Andrew Carnegie’s library building program with matching funds raised by a trustee-led campaign, because it signaled the college’s growing maturity. At its opening, Carnegie housed approximately 8,000 books drawn together from campus locations; by 1923 library holdings numbered 40,000 (with thousands more distributed among several departmental libraries) including significant special collections. In 1925, Willis Kerr was hired as Carnegie Librarian; his recruitment was consequential for future library development for the consortium.
Continue reading the full brief history of the Libraries of the Claremont Colleges. History provided by Carrie Marsh, former Director of Special Collections & Archives.