Library Mission & Priorities
The Gordon Library brings people and information together. We aspire to be an ally for information equity and diversity to meet global challenges.
In support of WPI’s mission, the Gordon Library selects, organizes, preserves, and provides equitable access to knowledge, and creates collaborative, diverse, and inclusive environments for learning and scholarship.
As WPI’s university library we serve every member of WPI’s community as they engage in purpose-driven learning, research, and service. In our work together we are guided by the WPI community’s shared values of respect, community, inclusion, innovation, and achievement.
As library professionals, we also embrace the core values of professional librarianship, including: access, confidentiality/privacy, democracy, diversity, education and lifelong learning, intellectual freedom, preservation, the public good, professionalism, service, social responsibility, and sustainability.
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion
The Gordon Library is deeply committed to supporting WPI’s diverse population of students, faculty, and staff. We create opportunities for equal access and success for our communities. We strive to integrate diverse voices in our programs and services, including our collections, teaching, archives, digital services, research services, and community events and exhibits.
We invite you to read about why it matters, what we're doing, in our Gordon Library Strategic Plan 2022-2026.
Throughout the past year, together with colleagues across the WPI community, we engaged in, contributed to, and learned deeply from the work that resulted in WPI’s new strategic plan Lead With Purpose (2021-2026). The library is committed to supporting the bold goals it outlines.
From spring through the fall 2021, we also worked within the library to identify five strategic initiatives that will meet the emerging and evolving needs of our community. They reflect the consensus of the library staff and will give energy and direction to our work for the WPI community. The initiatives are ambitious but realistic. Each contributes to fulfilling WPI’s promise of purpose-driven, accessible education and research in an inclusive community:
1. Providing Inclusive and Accessible Information: We will invest in analysis, research, benchmarking, outreach, and allocation of resources to increase the inclusiveness, diversity, and accessibility of information by the WPI community.
2. Growing and Redesigning Space for Well-Being and Learning: We will increase individual and small group meeting study spaces by more than 200 seats, including at least seven new Tech Suites; and realize a contemporary vision for how readers interact with each other and with library resources. We will support WPI’s unique curriculum by providing accessible and distinctive print book collections and expanded and enhanced individual group study spaces. Our vision will feature essential STEM books in an expanded upper floor reading room and expanded quiet study spaces integrated with a comprehensive and diverse global Humanities and Social Sciences browsing collection on the first floor.
3. Documenting the Voices and Experiences of WPI’s Diverse Community: In collaboration with students, alumni, faculty, and staff, we will develop, share, build and sustain a rich documentary record of the history of diverse student and other community groups at WPI.
4. Providing Open, Equitable & Inclusive Scholarly Communication Services: We will build a robust program of advisory services, platforms, instruction, and other services that will expand WPI’s contributions to a more equitable and high-impact globally accessible scholarly record.
5. Empowering Data Literacy: We will build a collaborative program to empower WPI students with a strong base of data literacies and skills, including data visualization and communication and critical and ethical use and sharing of data.
The full strategic plan including detailed proposals for each initiative, a description of our process, and acknowledgements of all who who contributed, can be viewed here.
We invite comments, questions, and suggestions from all members of our community.
Our annual priorities are informed by yearly surveys of our faculty and students, continuous data analysis, benchmarking, and assessment activities. Our annual reports share what we’ve done and how we’ve met our goals.