Hub, Hub, Hooray!

Student looks for seeds at the seed library as part of the Sustainability Hub.

Five years ago, a make-shift meeting room formed at the Science Library by groups who needed to talk about issues like climate change, severe weather and food insecurity started simply scooting nearby shelves together. The shelves were soon covered in colorful presentation posters summarizing related course work. Then the poster-clad shelves became a sort of fort around a clutch of cozy chairs and a borrowed tuft of carpet. This phenomena came to be known as the “Sustainability Hub” and it was born from the work applied by Jen Embree, subject librarian and Sustainability Hub coordinator and Neyda Gilman, sustainability and STEM engagement; health science librarian. 

Photo of the Sustainability Hub located in the Science Library featuring a student sitting at a table working on a laptop.
Students studying at the Sustainability Hub in the Science Library.

Embree and Gilman’s successful application to an ALA award in 2021 afforded their project the  ability to hire three student researchers. Together they created the online resource called Equitable Sustainability Literacy Guide: A Resource Guide for Environmental Justice and Activism Justice & Activism. The website helped spread news about the Science Library’s breadth of sustainability resources and the library’s open door policy to student groups which spurred the Student Sustainability Interest Group to form. The new program offerings caused an uptick in use of the Sustainability Hub which signaled Libraries’ administrators, including Interim Dean Jill Dixon, to notice the emerging student need and allocate $55,000 from the Binghamton Fund for the Libraries to help realize the Sustainability Hub as a formal place of study. 

What had organically become an epicenter for events and programming related to sustainability now boasts a Seed Library with more books, magazines and informational pamphlets on display. The heart of the Science Library is now packed with students who can finally start to enjoy this prime campus location to its fullest potential. This long anticipated improvement is a gift of appreciation to all Binghamton scholars who make the world a better place. Thank you!