I do my report on The Libraries Online! project at the Multnomah County Public Library is consistent with the long standing mission and roles that they have articulated for themselves in their long range plan, Focus on the Future. Multnomah County Public Librarys highest priority is to support their patrons in independent learning in order to gain new skills, and/or find employment. The Libraries Online! project in Oregon assists with this by allowing library staff to improve the librarys ability to increase technology resources and enhance librarian responses to increasingly sophisticated customer demands while addressing the needs of a larger, more diversified population seeking basic data, information and training on new technology resources. The goal of the Libraries Online! project is to target resources to those patrons who don't have access to PCs at home, work or school so that they can develop or maintain computer literacy skills in a supportive, non-threatening environment.
Through the Libraries Online! grant, the Multnomah County Public Library has established a Technology Tutors Computer Lab at the North Portland branch to provide users of all ages with access to PCs, CD-ROMs, printers, scanners, the internet, the library network and software productivity packages (word processing, spreadsheets, resume writers, etc.). The lab consists of 10 networked multimedia PCs with a printer, scanner, instructors station and PC projector. The lab is staffed afternoons, evenings and Saturdays with paid "technology tutors", who are students at the neighborhood high school and community college. The lab provides individual and group training sessions on acquiring and using PCs, library resources that can be accessed by PCs, PC operating systems, internet resources and popular software applications. The lab is scheduled so that training events are held specifically for children, youth, adults and seniors so that each group is guaranteed a portion of library resources.
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