56 · Survey Results: Survey Questions And Responses
activities such as scholarly presentations, author presentations, ﬁlm screenings, music, and food. Over four-hundred
people attended book discussions in various places including libraries, public schools, homes, coffee shops, a
museum, and even the local vineyard. Many campus and community partnerships were formed and these have
sparked other programs and partnerships. Approximately 20 librarians and staff were involved in the programming.
Partners included the public and alternative schools, student organizations, churches, the local newspaper, and
retail businesses. Program evaluations and participant comments (which continue two years later) attest to the
overwhelming success and the lasting impact of this program. Media impressions number in the millions due, in
part, to publications and public television programs produced. The Big Read has been used as an example of a
successful public engagement activities in obtaining subsequent grant funding.
In 2002, the OSU Library hosted the ALA/Smithsonian traveling exhibit Listening to the Prairie. Events included
an opening reception and symposium sponsored by OSU’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources; a closing
reception at Homecoming sponsored by the Friends of the OSU Library; lectures and presentations developed in
conjunction with the OSU Dept. Of Botany, the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service, the Tallgrass Prairie
Preserve, members of the Wichita Wheat Weavers Guild, and the OSU School of Leadership Studies as well as guest
faculty from other land-grant institutions; K-12 curricular programs for area school districts; and a workshop for Girl
Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma in grades 4-6. Almost 13,000 people visited the interactive exhibit. Approximately 20
librarians were involved in stafﬁng events, planning activities and serving as exhibit docents. Based on feedback
from visitor logs, email messages, program participation counts and media coverage, this exhibit was a huge
success. The opening reception was also our (then) new president’s ﬁrst campus speaking engagement and this fact
alone helped raise the visibility of the library and the exhibit.
Beginning in 2003 the Women’s Archives at OSU has had a strong collaborative partnership with the Oklahoma
Commission on the Status of Women (OCSW) which has engaged the statewide community in women’s issues
and women’s history in Oklahoma. Engagement programs have included the development of a tabloid Women’s
History Month supplement distributed to Oklahoma school children in grades 4-8 via the non-proﬁt Newspapers in
Education program (approximately 30,000 print copies + electronic) presented by the state’s statewide newspaper.
The supplement contained ties to state-mandated curricula as well as activities for students and was complemented
by a related daily newspaper feature (200,000+ circulation) during the month of March. The project was awarded
the 2008 Outstanding Achievement Award by the National Association of Commissions for Women (NACW).
Other joint initiatives include oral history projects to document the lives and contributions of inductees to the
Oklahoma Women’s Hall of Fame and most recently a press conference at the capitol to launch the library’s Women
of the Oklahoma Legislature Oral History Project and Web site. Additionally, the Women’s Archives and the OCSW
partnered in the publication of the ﬁrst ever Oklahoma Women’s Almanac, a 546-page book featuring policy issues,
biographies and statistics on Oklahoma women. The partnership promoted many educational/ community dialogue
events statewide surrounding the publication of the book and this project was awarded the 2006 Outstanding
Achievement Award by the NACW. A current initiative of the partnership includes the development of a county-by-
county study on the status of women in the state with a heavy educational/ community engagement component
and hopes to influence the state’s legislative agenda. Approximately 10 librarians and library staff have been
involved in these various projects as researchers, writers, event planners, and even artists.
In addition to the exhibition, In Circulation: Works on Paper (October 18 - December 14, 2007), the gallery
exhibited the Monroe-Lenox Portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart and two pages from the Will of George
Washington on loan from Fairfax County Circuit Court in anticipation of the inauguration of GW’s16th president,
Steven Knapp. On Friday, November 16, 2007 we held an Inauguration reception to Farewell the Will of George
Washington. 115 people attended.