Student organization Friends of the UConn Library continues to grow

If Friends of the UConn Library raises the most money for Ignite and wins $20,000, the earnings will be allotted to various library-related causes once they are in the UConn Foundation fund, Mairson said. (File photo/The Daily Campus)

The new student organization, Homies: Friends of the UConn Library, continues to grow as it gains new members and plans activities.

Several University of Connecticut students, with the assistance of administrators at the Homer Babbidge Library, founded Friends of the UConn Library around Nov. 2016 to provide a forum through which students could boost student involvement at the library. The organization has developed since its founding, senior digital media and design major and Friends of the UConn Library president Samantha Mairson said.

“We ratified our constitution at our last meeting,” Mairson said. “We’ve hosted successful events and generated a mailing list.”

The organization also elected executive board members at its most recent meeting, Mairson said.

Friends of the UConn Library will next set its sights on participating in the UConn Foundation’s Ignite competition, according to sixth-semester spanish major and Friends of the UConn Library secretary and event coordinator Zachary Corolla.

“Ignite is a competition on campus run through the UConn Foundation. It’s a crowdsourcing competition. You have to register,” Corolla said. “About 32 clubs are registered. Whoever raises the most money wins $20,000. The competition is from Feb. 13th to March 26th, I believe.”

If Friends of the UConn Library raises the most money for Ignite and wins $20,000, the earnings will be allotted to various library-related causes once they are in the UConn Foundation fund, Mairson said.

“The Ignite money goes to the UConn Foundation fund,” Mairson said. “It’s allocated then. Part goes to maintaining the club (Friends of the UConn Library)—to marketing, for example—part goes to service projects for the library and part goes to library initiatives, like OER (open educational resources).”

The organization distributed popcorn and blue buttons with the word “Homie” printed on them in white—referencing the organization’s full name, Homies: Friends of the UConn Library—near the library on several occasions in Dec., Mairson said.

“During finals week, it was a way to get people fed and to know who we are,” Mairson said.

Friends of the UConn Library maintains an extensive social media presence to make their name known as well, according to sixth-semester undeclared major and Friends of the UConn Library vice president Nicholas Helber.

“Social media is a way to get people to join. All people interested in the library should join,” Helber said. “I try to post about once a day.”

The organization will further endeavor to increase student participation with the library, Corolla said.

“We’re hoping the Ignite initiative will be successful. It’s for a really great purpose. The library affects thousands of students across campus,” Corolla said. “I’ve come here (to the library) on a random Tuesday to do group work and seen a whole floor filled up.”

Further information regarding Friends of the UConn Library may be found through their social media accounts.


Alexandra Retter is staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at alexandra.retter@uconn.edu.