Organizational Member Spotlight – Southeastern Louisiana University

Sims Memorial Library

Sims Memorial LibraryThe Linus A. Sims Memorial Library at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, Louisiana, joined ACRL in 1986 and has been an organizational member of ACRL for 30 years. We are proud to feature the Linus A. Sims Memorial Library.

1. Describe your library in 3 words: Service-oriented, resilient, friendly.

2. Describe ACRL in three words: Collaborative, progressive, supportive.

4. What does your library (as an organizational member) value about ACRL? ACRL provides information and scholarly research on topics that most affect academic libraries. Having access to their resources is a boon in furthering communication and collaboration among academic librarians. Its efforts, in particular, regarding information literacy and the development of the original standards and new framework are tools and discussions that help shape instructional services directed towards students’ needs.

5. What value does your library contribute to your campus? The library is a support center for students, faculty, and visitors to Southeastern’s campus. It supplies not only technical resources needed to create new scholarship but also the professionals who maintain those resources and guide users at their point of need. The library hosts educational experiences in the forms of presentations and both formal and informal instruction, and it acts as a partner for many on-campus initiatives.

6. In your own words: Southeastern Louisiana University is in an enviable location on the beautiful north shore of Lake Ponchartrain, with easy access to New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Back in the 1920s, Hammond was a bustling cosmopolitan town sitting at the junction of two major railroads. The city was growing and community leaders and business owners began to demand a locally funded junior college. Through the determination and leadership of Linus A. Sims, the University’s first president, Hammond Junior College opened its doors in 1925 in just nine months—an unprecedented pace, especially considering Louisiana politics. Three years later, the school was adopted into the State Board of Education and was renamed Southeastern Louisiana College. During the 1990’s, Southeastern was the fastest-growing college in the United States. Today, Southeastern Louisiana University has a student enrollment of approximately 15,000, and grants several master’s and two doctoral degrees. Its current Real World Ready initiative provides students with experiential learning opportunities, including internships, service-learning courses, research, artistic and field experiences, and other opportunities.

Sims Memorial Library is a four-story building which houses approximately 600,000 print and electronic volumes. The Library subscribes to over 130 databases, and is a federal document depository. Last year Sims celebrated its 50th anniversary in the Federal Depository Library Program. Sims Library is a member of LOUIS, a statewide consortium of academic libraries.

Sims Library is many things to many different people. It combines traditional library services and research support with varied educational and cultural programming for the University and surrounding community. Despite fiscal and other challenges, Sims has always maintained its primary mission to provide materials, services and instruction that support the University community and to promote information literacy and lifelong learning within the region. Ultimately, the goal at Sims Memorial Library is to be the place where our students get excited about knowledge and culture.

Editor’s Note: Is your library an ACRL organizational member? Would you like to be featured in our Organizational Member Spotlight feature? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at for more information.