The FCC voted another $1.5 billion to E-Rate, a federal subsidy program that brings high speed broadband to schools and libraries, and advocates, including the American Library Assocation and the Association for Rural & Small Libraries, are voicing their cheer.
The Pushing the Limits grant, aimed specifically at small and rural libraries, offers libraries subtle STEM programming aimed at adults not already interested in science topics. Modeled on the American Library Association’s long-running “Let’s Talk About It” program, Pushing The Limits is organized around four works of popular fiction that explore broad scientific themes. Libraries will partner with scientists in their community to come and lead informal discussions of each book.
The Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) conference in Raleigh, NC, saw an attendance of 379, matching the organization’s largest gate counts from back when it partnered with the Bookmobile association, and topping any previous independent conference. The crowd included attendees from 41 states, including Alaska, about one third of them made possible via scholarships from their state libraries. More than half—some 215—were first time attendees.