It is my distinct pleasure to welcome you to the Orange County Library System. The District's diverse population of more than 1 million is served by the Main Library and 14 Branches. I think you will find our library to be quite innovative. We believe in experimentation and innovation, constantly striving to find ways to provide you with lifelong learning opportunities. The Library has Wi-Fi access to the Internet at all 15 locations for all of our cardholders.
We have been named the 2011 Library of the Future by the American Library Association. The award was presented in June 2011 at the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans. Our initiative, Right Service at the Right Time has recently won two awards! The first is the Florida Library Association’s 2011 Library Innovation Award and the second is the Urban Libraries Council’s 2011 Library Innovation Award. These awards were made possible by the hard work and efforts of our dedicated staff.
To continue our efforts in becoming even more innovative and helpful for our community, we are currently planning an exciting new facility for all OCLS patrons. In April 2012, The Kendrick B. Melrose Family Foundation donated $1 million in the memory of Dorothy Lumley Melrose, Mr. Melrose’s late mother. The donation will go toward building The Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation & Creativity. The Center will be on the second floor of the Main Library and will house labs for visual arts, film, digital media, graphic design and audio engineering. Mrs. Melrose was an Orlando civic leader who believed in giving back to her community, and we are eager for the opportunity to do the same through this new and innovative venture. You can keep up with the progress on our blog dedicated to the Center.
For the second consecutive year, Disney awarded OCLS with a Helping Kids Shine grant for our Summer Reading Program. Disney awarded us $32,209 this year which will greatly enhance the terrific line up of programs scheduled this summer. Check out our other fabulous awards that have been bestowed on OCLS. These awards are all the more amazing considering that our budget is down by 25% over the last two years and our resources are even more limited than in years past.
Our Mac Labs at the Main Library and at Alafaya, Edgewater and West Oaks offer a wide variety of Mac classes like iWeb, Garageband, iPhoto and iMovie. We also have Technology Petting Zoo classes at various locations throughout the library system. You can test drive the latest eReaders, like the Nook and Kindle, and tablets like the iPad, Galaxy Tab, and Xoom. Check out the current schedule and learn how you can download free music and eBooks from our digital collection.
Our classroom training program provides hands-on experience in a wide variety of software applications. Podcasting, Quick Books, Google Earth, How to Type, Digital Photography, Photoshop, Windows Media Player Jukebox, and Movie Maker 2 software, as well as the full Windows 7 Office Suite, given in English, Spanish and Haitian Creole are just some of our offerings. These classes are free to cardholders, but because of their popularity, a reservation must be made to secure a seat. Watch for more classes on our Web Site each month or sign up for our "Technology @ OCLS" Newsletter or an RSS feed to keep you informed about new technology available through OCLS.
We are leading the way in online historical preservation and innovation with the launch of the Orlando Memory site. You can visit this site, register and begin uploading your favorite Orlando memories in many formats, including photos, video, audio, websites, and text.
On our website we have a number of streaming videos available to you, including 23 tutoring videos for e-learning Math and Algebra, 9 SAT preparation videos and 12 English as Second language videos. You can see and use these videos online, just by clicking on the title you want to view. There are also a number of promotional online videos that give you a virtual taste of some recent events held at our facilities. We also have some online versions of our classes in Excel I, Word I and Powerpoint in English and Spanish and Publisher I as well. We are committed to putting more of our classes online because we hear from you that you want access to our services at all hours. Our catalog lists more than 1.5 million items in the many formats that we offer, including DVDs and downloadables. We hope you take the time to visit one of our branches near where you work or live to "check us out." Staff will be most pleased to see you and help you. If you have questions, concerns or suggestions, please do not hesitate to Share a Comment with us.
Mary Anne Hodel