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Dear University of Illinois Colleague:

Welcome from the University Library! As a faculty member, you have joined a prestigious group of colleagues recognized internationally for excellence in teaching, research, and public engagement. Although this fall semester is unlike any other in our 152-year history, one thing remains certain—the Library is here for you.

These initial weeks following the first day of instruction are busy and often overwhelming. I want to make sure you know about the vast resources offered by the Library. Once a month, you’ll receive a brief message from us with information about how we can help you advance your research, service, and teaching.

First and most importantly, I encourage you to visit the Library’s website. Details on how the Library partners with faculty are online: Information for Instructors and Information for Researchers. Get to know the Library and take a (vitual) tour of the Main Library or one of the 20+ subject libraries, area studies centers, and special collections across campus. We also sponsor the Savvy Researcher workshop series—currently via Zoom.

The Library plays an integral role in supporting the faculty's research and instructional work through our rich print and digital collections, the expertise of our librarians, relevant and innovative services, and tools that provide access to electronic and online resources. As part of the university's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Library is striving to make as many of its resources available online and through remote access. This includes collections, library instruction, and reference and research services. We will continue to adapt to the changing circumstances, so please be sure to bookmark our COVID-19 Response page for the most up-to-date information about accessing all of these. 

The Library subscribes to more than 55,000 journals and has a collection budget exceeding $20 million that supports research in all disciplines. I encourage you to make an appointment for a virtual meeting with a librarian responsible for collecting and navigating information resources in your area. See the website for a Subjects LibGuide, which lists specialists for more than 70 subjects. For quick assistance getting started, use our Ask a Librarian service.

There are a few items you may want to check out right away. First, Illinois Data Bank is a free data repository designed to allow you to deposit data and make it publicly available. The Library also provides assistance with the writing of data management plans required by grant agencies. See the Research Data Service or your relevant departmental library. Also, you can use the Library’s DocExpress service to request digital copies of articles or chapters from our print collections; DocExpress is FREE for faculty, staff, and graduate students.

I’d also like to tell you about an exciting building project on the horizon. It will include transforming the Undergraduate Library (UGL) into a dedicated home for our special collections, as well as a re-designed Main Library, which will house many of the services and activities currently in the UGL. You can find more information on our Library Building Project website.  

Congratulations on your appointment! I wish you well in your position and hope you enjoy the many benefits that our campus and community have to offer. If you have any questions or comments about the Library’s collections and services, please contact me at jpwilkin@illinois.edu or 333-0790. I look forward to meeting and talking with you!

Sincerely,

John P. Wilkin
Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Dean of Libraries and University Librarian

 
 
 
 
 
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