Strong Students

While libraries might evoke a sense of timelessness, they must constantly adapt to meet the needs of their communities. University Libraries is fortunate to have a caring and innovative staff who provide transformative learning experiences for our diverse community of learners. But those learning experiences are changing.

In courses from history to urban planning, students must work together to create interactive digital maps, online videos, websites, and even smartphone applications.

To keep up, University Libraries needs additional technology and updated facilities that are as excellent as our dedicated library personnel. With your help, University Libraries seeks to raise more than $12 million through Our Call to Beneficence. Our primary goal is to create a Learning Commons with spaces and resources capable of adapting to whatever the future holds.


Red Quote


“We need the involvement of all of University Libraries’ supporters, from alumni to community members, to join us. Together we will make our libraries a more vibrant place for students to discover, learn, and collaborate.”


- Matthew Shaw ’95, ‘13MA, Dean 

Matthew Shaw

FUNDING Opportunities


Higher education has become more collaborative, innovative, and interdisciplinary. University Libraries must create state-of-the-art environments for learners that equal the innovative support of our librarians, archivists, and experts. A Learning Commons at Bracken Library will be an inclusive space optimized to serve student needs in the 21st century. Students will be able to access the latest software, expanded digital technology, green screens, and expert library support as they collaborate to create content. With your help, we will incorporate a sustainable and flexible design that enables us to update and refresh technologies and environments as needed.



Since research and writing remain critical to any project, digital or otherwise, University Libraries will partner with the Department of English to host a Research and Writing Studio within the Learning Commons. Integrating research and writing support centers inside main libraries has become a best practice for universities. Institutions that have integrated writing centers inside their main libraries have doubled the number of students they support.


Our Archives and Special Collections are the primary source for materials on the histories of Ball State, Muncie, and Hoosier architecture, and we manage a large collection of rare books and manuscripts. More than 230,000 visitors access our digital archives each year to view about 800,000 items.

Our limited budget has led to a backlog of collections that remain in need of preservation and inaccessible to the public. Those same constraints prevent us from expanding our holdings to adequately preserve the diversity of our communities. Establishing an endowment will help fund the storage, preservation, and long-term care of invaluable materials.



University Libraries will establish annual awards to incentivize and recognize undergraduate research papers or projects that incorporate exceptional library research. Encouraging our learners to develop and apply research, information, and digital literacy skills is critical to scholarship, career success, and lifelong learning. Furthermore, it is at the core of the University Libraries’ mission. This competition will empower undergraduates to examine challenging issues, formulate probing questions, discover new information, and articulate bold thinking informed by library research.

Bracken Library

1 Million+

University Libraries welcomes more than 1 million visitors each year.


Over 78,000 times a year, users access online research guides, subject guides, and other resources created by library personnel.

1.75 Million

Users have access to more than 1 million physical books, serials, and periodicals; 500,000 e-books and e-journals; and 250,000 digitized resources.

Help ensure strong, modern libraries for strong students.

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