Once the subscriptions run out, Puschak noted, the program will continue to operate as a public computing center with high-speed, broadband Internet and staff always on hand to answer questions and assist users.
“I think it’s a wonderful resource, and in the two years that the center was funded under the original grant, we served over 7,000 community members,” Armani said.
“The fact that it can continue in some way is very exciting for both of our organizations.”
MORE REFERENCE SERVICES
The Computer Center is currently unable to offer the variety of public classes it did under the grant funding, Puschak noted. However, it has been able to offer a few, including one on ebooks and another on conducting online research, and is in the process of planning more for the future.
And while the center’s current staff has not received the specialized training in digital literacy and resume building that the former employees did, he added, all of those who now assist with the center are trained librarians and able to offer reference services to users.
Previously, reference services, which include assistance with locating the proper sources of specific information, were only available at the library’s Reference Desk.
“So we’ve been able to double our reference services,” Puschak said.
In addition, the center hopes to provide digital literacy training to librarians in Clinton, Essex and Franklin counties later in the year.
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