SBCC’s Luria Library has added a library resident position and expanded its hours of operation, thanks to a $43,000 grant from the Luria Foundation.

Through the grant, the library resident position will be filled on a yearly basis by a college graduate who has completed his or her master’s degree program in library and information science or library science in the last two years when applying at SBCC. Molly Ridge, a graduate of the University of Washington, is filling the position for 2011-12.

“This is a win-win situation for both the library and for Molly,” said Kenley Neufeld, SBCC’s library director. “We get the fresh energy and creativity of a recent master’s degree librarian and needed staff support to serve our students. Molly will benefit from her one year of experience, which will be helpful as she seeks permanent employment.”

The library also will expand its weekend hours of operation to include Saturday. In the past, the library was only open during the school week. Through the generosity of community donors, Sunday hours were added four years ago.

“Thanks to the Luria Foundation, we are now able to open the library seven days a week, which is a significant accomplishment in this tight economy,” Neufeld said. “The library is also available to the general community.”

“Support from the community through our Foundation for SBCC has always made the difference in the excellent service we are able to provide our students,” said Dr. Jack Friedlander, acting superintendent/president. “Our library is exceptional by all standards.”

The Friends of the Luria Library, a community group, supports library services not funded by the California state budget, such as the endowment, providing student textbook grants, and bolstering the special, reference and periodicals collections.

The Luria Library is a central hub of the SBCC campus where students can do independent study, group study, work on the computers, access textbooks, conduct research or socialize. In the past five years, the number of annual visits to the library has more than doubled from 250,000 to 550,000. Library faculty also teach student classes regarding how to utilize library sources for specific areas of study.

In recognition of its service to both students and the community, the Luria Library was named the national winner in the community college category for the Association of College and Research Library’s (ACRL) 2011 Excellence in Academic Libraries Award competition.

Eli Luria Library’s new hours of operation (when college is in session) are 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Fridays, noon to 5 p.m. on Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sundays. There is free parking on weekends.

— Joan Galvan is a public information officer for SBCC.