Adapting Technology Grant Program
The State Library of North Carolina recently awarded over $1.5 million to 46 libraries across the state through the Adapting Technology grant program. These funds will help libraries respond directly and immediately to community needs arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the critical need for equitable access to technology that cultivates learning within North Carolina’s communities and reduces disparities in access to knowledge and resources.
The Adapting Technology program accepted applications that will allow for libraries to improve library operations through the purchase of technology that supports efforts to enable libraries to reach residents, especially in support of education, health, and workforce development needs; and/or to respond to the pandemic and implement public health protocols.
Randolph County Public Library is upfitting its diesel-powered Mobile Library with solar panels. The addition of the panels will allow for solar energy to power the bookmobile while at stops providing clean energy for Wi-Fi access, printing service, and remote technology classes through scheduled stops across the county.
UNC Asheville is creating a “Library Flex Kits” program with the goal of improving access to the library’s technologies through mobile kits and flexible spaces. Library Flex Kits will respond to existing and COVID-19-related access challenges by offering mobile alternatives to the library’s technology labs for high-demand tools, like those for audio and video recording and editing. Kits can be used in open commons areas of the library, in classrooms, at home, or wherever a user’s project might take them.
College of the Albemarle’s Learning Commons is addressing dual instruction and support service by providing mobile and permanent web-conferencing solutions, virtual office hours, and additional laptops for use with hybrid classes. These solutions will allow the Learning Commons to assist students as they adapt to dual instruction formats on campus.
The State Library received funding as part of the federal government’s investment in museums and libraries through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which provided additional funds to the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to support vital library programs and services in local communities. LSTA grants are awarded in response to specific needs of public, academic, and community college libraries. These federal funds are investments that help libraries deliver relevant and up-to-date services to their communities.
These grant awards are made possible by funding from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (IMLS grant number LS-250229-OLS-21).
A full list of awardees appears at: https://slnc.info/AdaptTechInfo