Why We Give
Our donors come from all corners of the University community and range from recent and not-so-recent graduates to seasoned faculty members. Donors choose to support the University of Idaho Library for a variety of reasons, but while each has a personal library story, we also discovered some common themes.
The University Library shares Idaho's story with the world
Stephen and Samantha Perez Parrott's ('12) experience with the University Library is still very fresh in their minds. Both recently served as ASUI presidents, and now they are out making their marks on the world.
"As students, we remember spending long hours in the library studying for upcoming exams. It was always a clean and quiet place to clear your mind," said Samantha. "The library was always our favorite place to study because of the options of having a private study space or a more open area near other people" Stephen agreed. "Samantha and I donate to help fund the addition of more study spaces, both private and collaborative."
Beyond the physical space, Stephen said, "I am especially interested in helping the library increase the holdings of its Special Collections. Those collections contain so many priceless historical resources about our state. We know our gifts to the library will go toward preserving the rich history of the University as well as the State of Idaho," he said. "The University of Idaho Library is essential to our University," echoed Samantha. Whether you know it or not the library touches each and every part of campus; and from there, it reaches out to the world."
Information becomes knowledge at the library
The library is an invaluable resource for faculty research, too. "As a faculty member and Library Advisory Board member, I can personally attest to the important work being conducted by our dedicated library administration and staff to support teaching and learning at the University," said Dr. Gary Williams, Professor and Chair of the University of Idaho Department of English.
"I rely on the library in so many ways," he continued, "but if I had to highlight one, it would be the superb Interlibrary Loan system, without which it would be practically impossible for me to conduct my research. I study 19th-century American women's writing and often need out-of-print books as well as photocopies of articles from journals from the 1850s and earlier," he said. "Not once in nearly forty years have the splendid crews in that office been unable to find what I've needed. This service has been critical to my publishing record."
Support for the library is support for the University
From within the library walls, Ben Hunter, Associate Librarian/Head of Cataloging and Collections, concurs with Stephen and Samantha Parrott and Dr. Williams. "I invest in the library because it plays such a central role in University of Idaho's teaching, learning, research, and outreach. Our services range from teaching students how to find, use, and evaluate information to providing faculty researchers with the latest research in their field to creating cutting-edge digital collections that make our Special Collections available to anyone in the world."
"We'll never be the biggest or the richest library," said Hunter, "but our dedicated library faculty and staff still make amazing things happen for our users every day. The library is part of what makes the University of Idaho great, and that is why I give to the library."