Omaha – Scholars from around the globe can now look to Omaha, Neb., as the source for the world’s largest collection of research literature on how to connect teaching and scholarship to community needs, thanks to the creation of the Barbara A. Holland Collection for Service Learning and Community Engagement at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO).
Starting this month, UNO becomes the custodian of more than10,000 volumes of scholarly work on service-learning and community engagement, which will be located in the UNO Criss Library.
Under the care of the Criss Library, the collection will be updated and enhanced with the addition of international publications and resources.The collection features publications regarding engagement in higher education, K-12 schools, the community-based organization sector and the Tribal Nations.
The collection’s new namesake, Barbara Holland, helped coordinate the transfer of the entire physical library collection of the former Learn and Serve America National Service-Learning Clearinghouse (NSLC), of which she is a former president. Holland is an internationally recognized expert on community engagement scholarship with academic affiliations at Portland State University, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, University of North Carolina at Greensboro and the University of Sydney (Australia).
“Dr. Holland was instrumental in bringing this nationally important collection to UNO,” UNO Chancellor John Christensen said. “She immediately recognized that UNO was uniquely positioned to continue making these materials available to policy makers, researchers and practitioners.”
The collection had previously been under the control of the Corporation for National and Community Service and needed a new home after funding ended earlier this year.
“UNO is an exemplary engaged university that will make an ideal home for the world’s only special library collection dedicated to service-learning and community engagement,” Holland said. “The University’s commitment to the collection and its future will ensure its value and accessibility to researchers. UNO’s accessible location and commitment to building the collection further will be an invaluable asset for the advancement of the field.”
The collection will be immediately available to the UNO campus as well as partners who will be coming to campus next year as residents of the new UNO Community Engagement Center. Additionally, the collection will be accessible worldwide through interlibrary loan programs and, eventually, through online access. Researchers and practitioners can also visit the collection to study the works in person.
“This is a tremendous addition to the UNO campus and to the scholarly world as a whole,” said Steve Shorb, Criss Library’s dean. “We can’t thank Dr. Holland enough for her assistance in helping secure the future of such an important collection.”
In addition to her academic appointments, Holland has served in a number of national leadership roles in the United States, including the directorship of the National Service-Learning Clearinghouse from 2002 to 2009 and an appointment to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development from 2000 to 2002 where she managed large grant programs for university-community partnerships.
Opening in spring of 2014, the UNO Community Engagement Center building, which is the first of its kind in the country, will serve as both the front door to the campus and as our signature outreach venue. Organizations that will be using space in the new Community Engagement Center will work with UNO to better the community through cooperative programming, reciprocal benefits, a shared commitment to diversity, open communications and impact focused on achieving collective and individual goals.
For questions or media inquiries, contact Charley Reed, UNO media relations coordinator, at email@example.com or by phone at 402.554.2129.