New Access to Diverse Collections Thanks to Statewide Partnership

Posted on: February 9, 2022

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We are excited to announce that the JMU community now has access to six new collections of primary source materials related to gender diversity, African American history, and Indigenous history and culture:

Where did funding come from?

These resources are available through our membership in Virginia’s academic library consortium (VIVA). Financial support was provided by the Fund for Excellence and Innovation from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and the General Assembly.

What do these collections mean for JMU?

JMU Libraries staff and faculty are excited for the potential of these new collections to support diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts and research at JMU, and recognize the significance of the support from VIVA, SCHEV, and the General Assembly:

“Since licensing these resources in May 2021, usage has been significant across Virginia institutions. This demonstrates a statewide need for primary resources on these topics. The VIVA Collections Committee continues to seek additional opportunities to provide robust DEI content. VIVA is grateful to SCHEV and the General Assembly for supporting our efforts via this one-time grant funding. As the Principal Investigator for the grant, I would also like to gratefully acknowledge the support of JMU’s Sponsored Programs and Procurement Offices, as well as Anne Osterman, the VIVA Director, in working with me to fulfill the administrative requirements of the award throughout this past year.” Cheri Duncan, Senior Strategist for Discovery, Access, and Technology & JMU Representative to the VIVA Collections Committee

“It’s exciting to see the state expand access to these primary sources, which provide a more comprehensive research corpus. This aligns well with our work to provide more representative collections to our campus community.” – Yasmeen Shorish, Head of Scholarly Communications Strategies & Special Advisor to the Dean for Equity Initiatives

“We are very grateful for VIVA’s support in growing and diversifying JMU Libraries’ collections. These resources provide critical primary source material for the JMU community and support the Libraries’ values of equity and inclusion.” – Sarah Pritchard, Director of Resource Management

“These collections provide many new research and curricular opportunities for faculty and students.” – Malia Willey, Humanities Librarian and member of the VIVA Support for Small Publishers Task Force

How does the partnership work?

JMU benefits from access to statewide shared collections for teaching and research, such as these. VIVA benefits from the work JMU faculty and staff do to license and purchase these collections on behalf of the consortium and its member institutions. JMU Libraries faculty and staff also participate in VIVA governance and special projects, including collaborations on open access publishing, open and affordable course content, interlibrary loan, and professional development for the library workforce.

“We’re fortunate to be part of one of the most progressive library consortia in the country. The entire Commonwealth benefits from VIVA’s dedication to leveling the academic playing field and fostering collaboration among libraries on critical initiatives like the development of more diverse and inclusive collections.” Nowviskie added, “I’m proud of the investment our JMU librarians make in supporting VIVA and keeping the collective plugged in to our local faculty and student needs.” – Bethany Nowviskie, Dean of JMU Libraries and Chair of the VIVA Steering Committee.

Learn more

Questions about these new collections or JMU’s efforts with VIVA? Please contact your department’s liaison librarian.

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