Conference Objects and Presentations (Communicative Events)

Alumni Library Services: Maintaining Relationships for Life

Marcin, Susan E.; Major, Colleen M.

Columbia University alumni enjoy access to a wide array of electronic resources -- materials from dozens of providers, hundreds of databases, and hundreds of thousands of e-book and e-journal titles. Yet, alumni regularly express frustration with the lack of content available to them and indicate that there is not enough material in their discipline(s). This negatively impacts alumni relationships with the library and university, affecting current and potential donor relations.

After reviewing alumni feedback from e-resource problem reports and donor solicitations, it became apparent to electronic resources librarians that the presentation and discovery of alumni e-resources was responsible for negatively impacting the user experience. E-resource librarians recognized that particular functionality was lacking for alumni, which they would have had as students. This includes an e-journal portal, openURL linking, and Web-scale discovery.

Through invoking best practices in both e-resources management and fundraising management and applying these principles to alumni e-resources services, the alumni experience can be positively transformed. The improved alumni research experience demonstrates continued library value. It fosters the ongoing reciprocal relationship between library and alumni, respecting alumni’s role as lifelong learners and library supporters..

This poster outlines our proposal to transform Columbia University Libraries’ static alumni portal into a modern and dynamic tool for alumni research and engagement. It contains visuals of the existing alumni page alongside the proposed enhanced pages, highlighting new functionality and features.


More About This Work

Academic Units
Published Here
July 6, 2020


This poster was presented at the American Library Association (ALA) Annual 2020 conference held June 25-30, 2020.