With the County of Los Angeles’ recent move into the orange tier under the State of California’s COVID-19 reopening framework, The Claremont Colleges Library welcomes the possibilities of more robust onsite Library services pending County approval. On April 15, the Library will begin a pilot program for faculty at The Claremont Colleges to make appointments in order to browse our print collections. (More information about the pilot will be shared on the Library website early next week.) While we are deeply engaged in planning for opening the building for other uses, we do not have target dates for these phased changes; although we expect to be more fully open in the coming months to students and other members of The Claremont Colleges community. Following the input of the Academic Deans this pilot “by appointment” opening for faculty will allow us to fine tune our procedures as we plan to become more fully opened.
While we have continued to maintain Library services throughout the pandemic, one of the biggest challenges we have faced in planning for the reopening of our Library is the wide range of reopening scenarios to consider. All of these scenarios involve establishing new workflows and policies in order to adhere to evolving public health guidelines and ensure the safety of all staff and users throughout the pandemic. In discussing these approaches with other collegiate libraries across the country that have partially reopened, we have been able to gather lessons learned and apply these lessons to our approach.
Our Library staff continues to enjoy serving students and faculty alike and would like to remind our community of ongoing services available during the pandemic:
- Contactless curbside and walk-in pickup for physical Library materials; option for mailing these materials to users outside of a 25-mile radius
- Scanning of sections of print-only Library materials, including course readings
- Increased capacity to digitize the Library’s Special Collections materials
- Enhanced tech lending service to support project-based learning (e.g., shipping items from the collection, extending loan periods)
- Remote research assistance and Library instruction
- Expanded selection of online tutorials and videos
The Claremont Colleges Library appreciates its role in serving our students and faculty. As responsible members of The Claremont Colleges community, with an interest in modeling good public health practices, we appreciate the patience of Library users as we work towards increasing onsite services while supporting County public health efforts and the safety of all.