Pickerington Public Library Director Suellen Goldsberry will soon cross a major achievement off her career to-do list.
In May, the library’s catalog will undergo a major expansion, offering members 500,000 new and unique book titles courtesy of the Columbus Metropolitan Library.
“Providing Pickerington library members access to the Columbus Metropolitan Library is something I’ve always wanted to accomplish before retirement,” says Goldsberry.
This joint catalog is made possible through the Central Library Consortium, of which Pickerington is a member. The consortium was formed in 1987. It currently has eight member libraries that share a catalog system and collaborate on projects: Pickerington, Marysville, Plain City, Grandview Heights, Alexandria, Fairfield County, Pickaway County and Wagnalls Memorial (Lithopolis).
On May 19, not only does the 21-branch Columbus library system join the consortium, so, too, do the three-branch Worthington Libraries and two-branch Southwest Public Libraries. When that happens, the total number of book titles available to members of any of these libraries will be 1.2 million. This collaboration, Goldsberry says, provides opportunities that align with the Pickerington library’s mission: to foster an inquisitive mind and the desire to know, understand and enjoy the world.
There won’t be any visible changes to library routine. Pickerington remains an independent library under local control. It will not become a branch of the Columbus library system or any other.
But a visit to its website, www.pickeringtonlibrary.org, after May 19 will show a major expansion of options. Hunting down a book is as simple as it was before, and if that book is anywhere within the consortium’s reach, it will be sent to the Pickerington library and held there for three days or until it’s picked up by the person who requested it.
The new items in the consortium’s offerings, in addition to being a boon for library visitors, are a cost-effective solution for the Pickerington library.
“I think it’s a win-win,” Goldsberry says. “We’re using taxpayers’ dollars ever more efficiently than in the past.”
The only adjustment for library members and personnel's getting accustomed to the mass expanse of available information. This accounts for Goldsberry’s only anxiety.
“It’s a big project. It’s taken a lot of planning and training,” she says. “There might be bumps in the road, but the end result is going to be fantastic.”
Morgan Montgomery is a contributing writer. Feedback welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org