Guerrieri Academic Commons arial view from front entrance.

SU Libraries 2020-2023 Strategic Plan

Introduction and Overview

The staff of the Salisbury University (SU) Libraries created a new mission, vision, values, and strategic plan for the Libraries at all-staff meetings in August 2019 and January 2020 and several department heads meetings in 2019-2020. This plan supports Salisbury University’s 2020-2025 strategic plan and is organized according to the goals and objectives of the university-wide plan (read the full SU plan). Carrying out this plan depends in part on staffing and resource availability. It includes all parts of the SU Libraries, including the Dr. Ernie Bond Curriculum Resource Center (CRC) and the Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture (Nabb) as well as the main library in the Guerrieri Academic Commons (GAC).


The Salisbury University Libraries cultivate and sustain a superior learning community by providing user-centered services and information resources in an engaging and inclusive environment dedicated to the free exchange of ideas and excellence in learning, teaching, scholarship, creativity, and service.


The SU Libraries: scholarship and lifelong inquiry for a just society.


These are the values by which the SU Libraries operate:
  • Intellectual inquiry
  • Equity
  • Service
  • Respect and empowerment
  • Creative adaptability
  • Collaboration

Goal 1: Enrich Academic Success and Student Development

Objective 1.1 Continue to support and develop our wide range of exceptional and challenging academic programs and experiences.

  • Annually: Adjust liaison assignments and duties as appropriate to support expanded programs. (Dean)
  • Annually: Continue to support programs through acquisitions, regularly reviewing collection policies and needs. (Liaisons, Collection Development Coordinator)
  • Annually: Review and revise the MakerLab’s menu of services and hours to stay up-to-date and meet student and faculty needs. (Technology Librarian)
  • Ongoing: Continue to support courses by offering instruction and assistance with assignments through a variety of means. (Liaisons)
  • Ongoing: Continue to participate in the University System of Maryland and Affiliated Institutions (USMAI) Library Consortium. (Dean)
  • Ongoing: Continue regular surveys of Seidel students and faculty regarding the CRC and adjust CRC services accordingly. (CRC Coordinator)
  • Ongoing: Continue library involvement in school curriculum committees. (Liaisons)
  • Ongoing: Continue to provide library resource assessments as part of course and program proposals and request funds as needed. (Liaisons, Dean)
  • Ongoing: Continue to provide accreditation assessments/reports of library resources when requested. (Liaisons)
  • Ongoing: Communicate more effectively the available resources of the library for faculty to better manage the gap between faculty expectations and reality. (Liaisons)
  • Ongoing: Continue to bind SU theses and dissertations and add them to our collections. (CRC Coordinator, Head of Cataloging, Serials/E-Resources Librarian, Cataloging and Metadata Services Librarian, University Archivist)
  • Ongoing: Adapt how we support the Honors College as it grows. (Honors Liaison)
  • 2021: Assess the needs of transfer students and create a plan for meeting their needs. (Student Success & Engagement Coordinator, RIS Department Chair, Coordinator of Library Instruction)
  • 2022: Conduct a usability study of our distance learning program. (Director of External Library Services)
  • 2022: Assess the effectiveness of the support we offer to freshmen and adapt the support as needed. (Student Success & Engagement Coordinator, RIS Department Chair, Coordinator of Library Instruction)

Objective 1.2 Develop a more robust program of student support services that fosters holistic student wellness, development, integrity, leadership, and resiliency.

  • Annually: Collaborate with CSA, TRiO, and the Writing Center on programming in our joint space, such as by adding signage at the Library Service Desk promoting their services or by giving away bookmarks promoting services. (Student Success & Engagement Coordinator)
  • Ongoing: Continue to offer Seidel graduate students Gull Card access to the CRC. (CRC Coordinator)
  • Ongoing: Continue offering end-of-semester relaxation activities to promote student well-being. (Student Success & Engagement Coordinator)
  • 2020: Consider lengthening loan period for graduate students. (Head of Circulation, User Services Team)
  • 2022: Consider offering document delivery services through ILL for graduate students, much like we offer faculty. (Head of Circulation)
  • 2023: Trial and (establish, if successful) a circulating medical device collection. (D&I Committee, Head of Circulation)

Objective 1.3 Cultivate student participation in High-Impact Practices (HIPs) to support improvements in time-to-degree, retention, and graduation.

  • Annually: Continue Library Undergraduate Research Prize and Nabb Center prizes. (Dean, Nabb Director)
  • Annually: Continue the Library Prize purchase award for senior art students. (Art Prize Committee)
  • Ongoing: Continue to provide one-on-one research support to students. (Liaisons)
  • Ongoing: Continue to provide opportunities for research in original sources. (Nabb Staff)
  • Ongoing: Promote the MakerLab to students and faculty. (Technology Librarian)
  • Ongoing: Promote study-abroad opportunities, such as by creating rotating displays highlighting study abroad programs in different locations, profiling students studying abroad, and offering relevant materials/resources from our collection. (Center for International Education Liaison, Curator of Exhibits and Engagement)
  • 2021: Standardize internships in the Libraries and put information about them online. (Student Success and Engagement Coordinator)
  • 2023: Expand mentorship of student employees and opportunities for student employees to participate in library committees and events. (Executive Administrative Assistant, Head of Circulation)

Objective 1.4 Provide enhanced support for faculty to foster teaching, research, scholarship, creative activity, service, and professional development.

  • Annually: Continue to seek outside training for SU Libraries staff. (Dean, Supervisors, D&I Committee)
  • Annually: Provide dedicated and protected time for library faculty to pursue research/scholarship. (Dean)
  • Annually: Continue Pub Night and look for additional ways to celebrate faculty scholarship. (Dean)
  • Ongoing: Continue Course Enhancement Grants and IL Partner of the Month program. (Dean)
  • Ongoing: Continue to support faculty by adding two copies of each of their publications, to the Faculty Collection housed in Nabb and to the general library stacks collection. (Acquisitions Coordinator)
  • Ongoing: Support faculty development in library-related areas (information and other literacies, use of primary sources, copyright, open access, use of technology such as 3D printing and Virtual Reality, etc.) through FLCs, workshops, tutorials, or other means. (Liaisons, Open Resources and Data Management Coordinator, Technology Librarian, Nabb Director)
  • Ongoing: Seek out and, where feasible, apply for grants to fund new services, programming, materials, and equipment. (Dean, Nabb Director, and everyone else)

Objective 1.5 Affirm the relevance and value of General Education to career and life success for all majors.

  • Ongoing: Continue to partner with the English Department and the Honors College to offer instruction in ENGL 103 and HONR 111. (Coordinator of Library Instructions, Honors College Liaison, Liaisons)
  • 2021: Develop a library instruction curriculum map to show gaps in information literacy student learning experiences. (Coordinator of Library Instruction)
  • 2021: Work with UARA to analyze GullWeek and other Information Literacy assessments in order to develop action steps. (Coordinator of Library Instruction)

Goal 2: Inspire a Campus Culture of Inclusive Excellence, Support and Collaboration

Objective 2.1 Create and implement a holistic diversity and inclusive excellence plan through the establishment of an Office of Diversity & Inclusion.

  • Annually: Continue to spend at least 10% of book budgets on diversity and inclusion titles. (Liaisons)
  • Annually: At the end of each fiscal year, compile a list of all books purchased for SU Libraries that directly support diversity initiatives. (Acquisitions Specialist; Director of Collection Management)
  • Ongoing: Ensure that services and resources are accessible and inclusive. (D&I Committee, Department Heads, and everyone else)
  • Ongoing: Encourage collaborative exhibits that are student-driven. (Curator of Exhibits and Engagement, Student Success and Engagement Coordinator, D&I Committee)
  • Ongoing: Continue and expand events/displays/social media for observation months and days. (D&I Committee)
  • 2020: Provide training on accessibility, especially for online resources (i.e., videos, LibGuides, etc.). (D&I Committee)
  • 2020: Purchase, if possible, Archives Unbound current collections and the LGBTQ archive (Cengage Learning). (Dean, Head of Collection Management)
  • 2021 and ongoing: Contact vendors of online resources for accessibility information and make this available in a shared location. (Serials and E-Resources Librarian)
  • 2021: Collaborate with LGBTQIA+ Resource Center to offer Walk-in Closet - clothes sharing event for trans and gender non-conforming community; GAC can serve as clothing drop-off and help publicize. (D&I Committee)
  • 2021: Create diversity collection signage in stacks. (D&I Committee)
  • 2021 (for permanent signage and Ongoing for newly created items): Examine building signage and library communications/publications to ensure use of inclusive language. (D&I Committee, Communications Committee)
  • 2022: Work with the Office of Diversity & Inclusion on establishing a collection of training materials for D&I efforts in higher education. (D&I Committee)
  • 2023: Achieve 100% staff participation among staff who have been employed for at least one year in Safe Spaces training (including student employees). (D&I Committee, Supervisors)
  • 2023: Implement a D&I training program for all Libraries staff, new and continuing, that goes beyond only an initial orientation. (D&I Committee, Supervisors)

Objective 2.2 Enhance our faculty and staff recruitment strategies (see Goal 3 for student recruitment)

  • Annually: Regularly review our onboarding procedures to keep them up to date. (Executive Administrative Assistant)
  • Ongoing: Have contingency plans in place to prepare for empty positions. (Dean, Department Heads)

Objective 2.3 Review our professional development, recognition, benefits, and compensation programs to improve retention of faculty and staff.

  • Annually: Continue Summer of Learning and cross-training of staff. (Dean)
  • Ongoing: Encourage staff participation in USMAI groups and activities. (Dean and Department Heads)
  • 2022: Provide training in assessment to selected staff. (Dean)

Objective 2.4 Create and promote the use of welcoming and inclusive campus spaces aligned with the Facilities Master Plan.

  • 2021 and ongoing: Improve service to patrons by providing more ways to check out books, possibly through a self-checkout station or similar technologies. (Dean, Technology Librarian, Head of Circulation)

Goal 3: Support Access, Affordability and Academic Excellence

Objective 3.1 Improve access and increase enrollment utilizing strategies developed in the Strategic Enrollment Plan.

  • Annually: Regularly review our distance learning services to ensure that we are fully supporting online students and those at regional centers. (Director of External Library Services)
  • Ongoing: Improve access to collections for distance students and faculty by negotiating licensing terms that guarantee wide access and rejecting resources that do not serve our distance programs. (Serials and E-Resources Librarian)
  • Ongoing: Continue to survey distance students and faculty on an as-needed basis. (Director of External Library Services)
  • 2020 and ongoing: Expand online archival collections and exhibitions to support online and regional students and teaching. (Archivists, Curator of Exhibits and Engagement)
  • 2021 and biennially: Review MOUs with regional location libraries. (Director of External Library Services)
  • 2021: Create a library prize targeted at distance students. (Director of External Library Services)
  • 2022: Provide kid-friendly spaces with containers to check out, offering age-appropriate items to keep them occupied while their parents study in the GAC and the CRC. (Head of Circulation, CRC Coordinator)
  • 2022: Develop partnerships with local school librarians to support their work and to help our teacher education students develop an understanding of what they can expect from their school libraries. (CRC Coordinator)

Objective 3.2 Increase affordability to support the continued enrollment of a diverse student body.

  • 2021 and ongoing: Replace technology that Libraries circulate, such as laptops and iPads, on a regular schedule. (Dean, Technology Librarian)
  • Ongoing: Expand textbooks on reserve. (Dean, Reserves Coordinator, Acquisitions Specialist)
  • Ongoing: Educate faculty on Open Educational Resources (OERs) and open access and encourage faculty use. (Open Resources and Data Management Coordinator, Liaisons)
  • Ongoing: Activate Open Access (OA) journals in SFX and in the discovery layer knowledge base as publishers send notification of OA content. (Serials and E-Resources Librarian, Cataloging and Metadata Services Librarian)
  • Ongoing: Continue to participate in shared services and other cost-saving opportunities through the USMAI Library Consortium. (Dean)
  • 2020: Subscribe to EBSCO’s “Faculty Select” program. (Head of Collection Management)
  • Ongoing: Better manage and promote SOAR@SU, ensuring all metadata conforms to best practices and ingesting non-Archives materials. (Nabb Archivists, Cataloging and Metadata Services Librarian)
  • 2021: Establish a workflow for increasing accessibility to processed collections via local and remote systems, including through the discovery system. (Nabb Archivists, Cataloging and Metadata Services Librarian)
  • 2021: Develop a process to request Open Access (OA) records in the catalog, possibly using MaRS. (Technology Librarian, Cataloging and Metadata Services Librarian)

Objective 3.3 Develop and articulate an identity that distinguishes SU as an outstanding public regional comprehensive University committed to academic excellence and student success. 

  • Ongoing: Make the Libraries website more intuitive and user friendly, based on an analysis of website usage and possibly user-experience studies. (Website Committee)
  • Ongoing: Do a better job of showing the value of SU Libraries resources to the entire campus and community. (Dean)
  • Ongoing: Collaborate with SU’s public radio stations WSCL/WSDL to promote events. (Nabb Administrative Assistant, Communications Committee)
  • Ongoing: Meet with students, student liaisons, and/or student organizations to explore ways we might partner with or support them. (Student Success and Engagement Coordinator)
  • 2020 and ongoing: Create a public-facing, succinct visual representation (such as an infographic) of yearly SUL statistics and data. (Dean)
  • 2021: Seek marketing/promotion training from SU’s PR office or elsewhere. (Dean)
  • 2021: Develop a stronger social media presence, using ideas from the SWOT analysis and/or other ideas. (Social Media Coordinator/Committee)

Goal 4: Deepen Engagement with our Community

Objective 4.1 Advance and promote SU’s engagement with our community.

  • Ongoing: Continue creating programming and exhibits that appeal to the community and publicize them. (Nabb Staff, D&I Committee)
  • Ongoing: Continue to offer display and exhibit space in the CRC for Seidel courses and for innovative faculty teaching. (CRC Coordinator)
  • Ongoing: Continue to maintain the Perdue Museum and Archives, as needed and funded. (Curator of Exhibits and Engagement, Local History Archivist)
  • 2020 and ongoing: Collaborate with local libraries, such as the Wicomico Public Libraries and the Wicomico County Board of Education’s libraries. (Dean, CRC Coordinator, Director of Collection Management)
  • 2020 and ongoing: Collaborate with local museums and historical societies on programming and exhibits. (Curator of Exhibits and Engagement, Nabb Director)
  • 2021: Publicize how to visit the Libraries for the general public (e.g., how to get a parking pass, GPS address) (Dean)
  • 2021: Standardize a process for community group visits, i.e., menu of things to do/visit: information literacy class, Nabb and CRC visits, exhibit tours, resources available, etc. (Coordinator of Library Instruction, Nabb Staff, CRC Coordinator)
  • 2021: Create a mechanism for gathering feedback from the community about how the SU Libraries could better support it. (Head of Circulation and Director of External Library Services)
  • 2021 and ongoing: Sponsor Little Free Libraries with donated materials. (CRC Coordinator with assistance from Director of External Library Services and Head of Collection Management)

Objective 4.2 Expand engagement of alumni, families, and friends with the SU community.

  • 2020: Develop an “oral history corps” of students to interview alumni in preparation for SU’s centennial. (University Archivist and Special Collections Librarian)
  • 2020: Develop several “history of SU” programs—such as presentations or pop-up exhibits--that could be taken to alumni meetings around the state/region. (University Archivist and Special Collections Librarian)
  • 2020 and ongoing: Continue to try to engage parents and family members and educate them in how the Libraries can help their students. (Dean)

Objective 4.3 Enhance and expand local partnerships.

  • 2021 and ongoing: Create small traveling versions of selected Nabb exhibits to continue them at other venues, such as local libraries and museums, civic spaces, etc. (Exhibits and Engagement Coordinator)

Objective 4.4 Support community-based learning and community-engaged scholarship. 

  • 2021: Promote PACE and civic engagement through exhibits, digital signage, and social media. (PACE Liaison)
  • 2023: Work with PACE on a library- or literacy/reading-related community project. (PACE Liaison)

Goal 5: Enhance Environmental, Social and Economic Sustainability

Objective 5.1 Serve as a leader in our region in providing educational opportunities that enhance social, environmental and economic sustainability.

  • 2021 and ongoing: Continue and expand focus on Chesapeake Studies through an annual or biennial conference and possibly other means. (Dean, Nabb Director)

Objective 5.2 Aspire to lead local environmental sustainability initiatives and communicate those efforts to internal and external constituents.

  • Ongoing: Continue to provide a portal of library materials supporting sustainability via the Sustainability Resource Guide. (CRC Coordinator)
  • 2020 and ongoing: Provide SU swag such as reusable cups and other non-disposable/trash-sustainable items that encourage re-use. (Executive Administrative Assistant)
  • 2021: Perform an environmental audit of library operations. (CRC Coordinator, Executive Administrative Assistant)
  • 2021: Collaborate with the Office of Sustainability to help promote a method for students/staff to provide input on ideas supporting sustainability, such as providing a location in the GAC to submit ideas. (Head of Circulation and Assistant Head of Circulation)
  • 2022: Collaborate with Dining Services to encourage cup/mug reuse at locations in GAC. (Head of Circulation and Assistant Head of Circulation)

Objective 5.3 Emphasize social sustainability at SU by promoting a resilient community

  • Ongoing: Continue and expand our collaboration with Food for the Flock. (Head of Circulation)
  • 2020: Expand Department Heads to include an elected representative of non-exempt staff. (Dean)
  • 2020-2021: Transition library promotion and permanent status processes to Digital Measures. (Dean working with the Associate Provost)
  • 2022: Transition annual evaluation process to Digital Measures for faculty. (Dean working with the Associate Provost)

Objective 5.4 Promote economic sustainability by expanding effectiveness and efficiency practices and promoting a transparent process for strategic planning and budgeting.

  • Annually: Assess journal and database subscriptions and needs in academic departments, conducting regular usage analysis of resources and ensuring transparency regarding final add/drop decisions. (Head of Collection Management, Serials and E-Resources Librarian, Dean, Liaisons)