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Library receives state grant to expand collection

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – For the 17th consecutive year, the Bethel College Library is a recipient of grant monies distributed by the State Library of Kansas.

The state gave out $516,824 in Interlibrary Loan Development Program (ILDP) funds for FY 2008 to 24 public libraries. The Bethel College Library will use its award of $3,500 to purchase films and audiobooks in the genre of history and literature.

In addition to the Bethel College Library, other local recipients of ILDP grants were the Hesston Public Library, awarded $1,940 to purchase CDs and DVDs in the “adult fiction: traditional values” category, and the Hillsboro Public Library, which will use its $500 award to buy resources on diabetes and juvenile diabetes.

The State Library of Kansas received 47 competitive grant proposals and awarded $57,197 to a total of 27 libraries. A three-judge panel representing school, academic and public libraries reviewed the applications and worked independently to score each one. The scores were averaged and a minimum threshold score set. The State Librarian made the final determination based on the panel’s recommendations.

“The grant permits the library to update and expand its collection,” said Gail Niles Stucky, Bethel College Library co-director. “Having these materials available locally saves time for the library’s users and enhances the library’s contribution to the statewide interlibrary loan resource sharing.”

Interlibrary loan is a statewide cooperative service that allows people to borrow materials from libraries across the state. To qualify for an Interlibrary Loan Development Program grant, applicants agree to make materials for their collections available through interlibrary loan. Proposals are funded on the basis of their potential to improve the quality and breadth of resources available statewide. Grant recipients are also required to contribute a percentage of new materials purchased with grant money to the statewide virtual library.

Bethel College is a four-year liberal arts college affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. Founded in 1887, it is the oldest Mennonite college in North America. Bethel is known for its academic excellence and was the only Kansas private college to be ranked in’s listing of “America’s Best Colleges” for 2008. For more information, see the Bethel Web site at

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