SANTA FE, N.M., Oct. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Santa Fe Community College today announced a new initiative designed to provide students access to digital textbook reserves and academic resources during the COVID-19 pandemic. Through a first-of-its-kind partnership with BibliU, whose pioneering platform helps make course materials more accessible and affordable, SFCC students can now access digital resources through the SFCC Library, as the ongoing crisis necessitates a transition to remote learning at colleges and universities across the country.
"This fall, our campus has stayed closed and all of our academic and student services moved online. With few exceptions, most of our classes are online. As a result, more students than ever have had trouble accessing textbooks for their courses -- a challenge that is particularly acute for low-income and first-generation students," said Santa Fe Community College President Becky Rowley, Ph.D. "Libraries have a critical role to play in closing higher education's persistent equity gaps by helping students access digital resources during the crisis -- and BibliU has been a pioneering partner in our efforts to ensure that all students get the materials they need."
Historically, the SFCC Library -- like most academic libraries across the country -- has provided reserve textbooks and other materials that are distributed to students temporarily, on an as-needed basis. However, because the pandemic has necessitated the closure of SFCC's campus library, many students who were unable to purchase or afford textbooks are now stuck at home with no access to course materials. To close this gap, SFCC tapped BibliU's unique platform to provide digital resources that students can access seamlessly at any time, through any device.
"As the pandemic reshapes the landscape of higher education, this partnership will ensure that SFCC students retain access to the textbooks they need to succeed in their coursework," said Dave Sherwood, CEO and co-founder of BibliU. "While COVID-19 has created unprecedented challenges for institutions, it's also uncovered surprising opportunities -- like the potential for academic libraries to serve as engines of access and equity in ways that they never have before."
Founded through Oxford University's startup incubator, BibliU has helped more than 100 institutions across the United States and Europe provide essential course materials and support to students, while helping to eradicate the hidden costs of learning that so often present barriers to persistence and completion. Since its founding in 2013, BibliU has helped colleges and universities remove these barriers by expanding access to online course materials from more than 2,000 publishers.
About Santa Fe Community College
For more than 35 years, Santa Fe Community College has been the gateway to success for individuals and the community by providing affordable, high-quality educational programs that serve the social, cultural, technological and economic needs of a diverse community. SFCC is designated a Best for Vets and a Military Friendly school. The college serves more than 13,000 students per year in its credit, noncredit and adult programs. For more information, visit sfcc.edu.