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Director's Column
Special Visitors to the Libraries

In my Fall 2002 Connections column, I wrote about the External Review of the Libraries to be conducted under the auspices of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). The Visiting Team, comprised of five distinguished librarians, is scheduled to visit Claremont on October 13-15, 2003. This is not a review for accreditation because the Claremont University Consortium, of which the Libraries is a unit, is not a degree-granting institution and thus not eligible for accreditation. However, the Visiting Team Report may be appropriate for documentation for future accreditation visits to The Colleges.

In the last several months, a Self Study Steering Committee chaired by Alberta Walker, Associate Director of Libraries, has been hard at work preparing for this visit. As a first step, they documented our capacity for providing services and resources that meet your needs. Additionally, the Committee, with assistance from faculty and others, produced reflective essays on the topics we regard as critical to the future of the Libraries. Drawn from our Strategic Plan, these essays address four topics-collaborating with faculty to enhance student learning; developing our collections, with an emphasis on journals; preparing for further development of a Claremont digital library; and using our library spaces.

The capacity study and the four essays along with supporting documentation are presented in a web portfolio developed by the Self Study Team. You can review the portfolio at http://libraries.claremont.edu/selfstudy. In addition, we will provide opportunities for members of The Claremont Colleges community to meet and talk with members of the Team. As planning for the Visit proceeds, we will keep you apprised of the Visiting Team's schedule.

Writing the Self Study has been a learning experience for us, and we expect to learn even more from the Report of the Visiting Team. Even if you are not involved in the Visit, I hope that you will take the opportunity to send me any comments you may have on the Self Study. Information we continue to gather through this process and afterward will be used to make any necessary improvements to our resources and services. Furthermore, what we learn will have a major impact on the reformulation of our Strategic Plan. That new Plan will shape the future of library services, traditional and digital, for the next several years. We look forward to your response to the Self Study documents and to other comments you may have that will assist us in our efforts to ensure that we provide the best possible resources and services to The Claremont Colleges community.

Bonnie Clemens
Director of Libraries
bonnie.clemens@libraries.claremont.edu

Connections is published by The Libraries of The Claremont Colleges and distributed during Fall & Spring semesters.
Edited by
Gale Burrow. Last updated October 10, 2003 by Julie Shen.