How to Position Your Library as Part of University Recruitment

October 26, 2015 / by Lindsay Mullen


What initially attracts a potential student to a specific university? Is it the football team with a storied past and long-standing tradition of excellence? Or is it the brilliant professors and a top program in their area of study? When students begin the search for their dream college, there are a lot of factors that can contribute to your school being a top contender. The football team, the academic reputation and even the library can help attract high school seniors to your school and motivate them to send in their applications.

Recruiting new students is a lengthy process, involving many information sessions and campus tours throughout the summer and academic year. So how can your library help with recruitment? Read on for tips.

Event spotlight

When making the pit stop at the library on a campus tour, most students just see the space as the go-to location for late night studying. But as an academic librarian, you know it’s so much more than that. A campus tour is the ideal time to showcase all of the great events, workshops and lectures that your space hosts each semester. Make sure there’s evidence of all the great things your library provides for students easily visible, both for current and prospective students. Showcase signups for tutoring sessions, one-on-one time with research librarians or writing center hours for the next month. Some prospective students might be looking for extra assistance in the development of their studying and research skills. Knowing that the library provides the guidance they need to be successful can be a powerful recruitment tool.

More than just books

Ask a group of prospective students you’re showing around what their interests and intended areas of study might be. Are some students planning on studying abroad? If so, introduce them to Mango right away. Are students planning on majoring in theater or music? Showcase your library’s performance art and music resources, multimedia section and practice rooms. Are other students already canvassing for a campus job? Let them know about opportunities for work at the library. Showcasing how your resources go above and beyond to help students can help make them feel more at ease and that they can achieve academic success at your university.

Go where the kids go

Don’t just rely on prospective students and their parents coming into your physical library to help out in campus recruitment. An active social media presence and strong website can go a long way in helping convince those students who can’t visit that your institution is worth attending. Keep your Facebook and Twitter pages up-to-date and full of news, goings-on and fun pictures of what’s happening at your library. Encourage student communication on these fronts, so that prospective students can see how easy it is to communicate. What’s more, make sure your website is up-to-date, mobile-optimized and clearly organized for students to navigate.

If you’re looking for ideas on how to make your library the center of the campus community, take a look at our recent case study. We partnered with Brazosport College to show how language learning can add tremendous value to an academic library—and benefit the whole student population.
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Topics: Higher Ed, Public Libraries

Lindsay Mullen

Written by Lindsay Mullen

Lindsay Mullen is CEO of Prosper Strategies, working behind the scenes to support the Mango team's world of lovable language learning. A language aficionado herself, Lindsay oversees a team of marketers fluent in public relations, content development and strategy (and they speak some German, French, Spanish and Chinese as well.)

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