Penn State Harrisburg library awarded gold star for library excellence

Penn State Harrisburg Library
Credit: Penn State Harrisburg

MIDDLETOWN, Pa. — The Penn State Harrisburg library was awarded a Gold Star by PA Forward and the Pennsylvania Library Association for the second quarter of 2019 for activities that promote five essential literacies: basic; civic and social; health; information; and financial. This makes the Penn State Harrisburg library one of five academic libraries and 30 libraries total in Pennsylvania that have been awarded a star.

“The Gold Star Award shows that the Penn State Harrisburg library is an outward-facing organization that is focused on connecting the library to people,” said Glenn McGuigan, Penn State Harrisburg library director and head librarian. “Thanks to the work of Emily Mross, our business librarian and outreach coordinator, and the work of our other liaison librarians, this acknowledgment shows that the library is reaching out to the Penn State community. It shows the community that the library is a place of engagement for not only intellectual discovery, but also for fun events that bring people together.” 

Libraries are recognized for meeting benchmarks within the bronze, silver and gold star levels of the program. Stars are awarded on a quarterly basis and the recognition is for the highest level attained at the time of the award.

“The PA Forward Star Library program spotlights libraries’ efforts to continue making intentional investments in literacy-aligned programs,” said Christi Buker, Pennsylvania Library Association executive director. “Our libraries continue to be community pillars, meeting citizen needs, helping businesses, government organizations and others connect with local residents, and sharing resources and information which have the potential to positively impact multiple lives.”

PA Forward, which launched statewide in 2012, works within five literacy areas to assist individuals in enhancing their overall quality of life. In January 2017, to continue helping libraries use PA Forward to demonstrate all their libraries offer, the association kicked off the Star Library program statewide. The recognition program offers support to libraries that participate and integrate PA Forward’s literacies in their programming activities. Program topics can include information such as retirement planning (financial literacy) to more physically active programs such as walking book club discussions (civic and social literacy and health literacy).

“The award is a significant recognition of our work, and our campus community,” said Mross. “Due to the success of last year's events, we will continue to offer PA Forward programming, and have a full slate for this academic year.”