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I have a confession: I’m an accidental business librarian. My background is in art history, but like many public librarians, I was placed in a department that needed staff, and that department was business services. I grew to love business reference and helping entrepreneurs with business planning and research. I even got the opportunity to create and grow the Business Resource and Innovation Center (BRIC) at the Free Library of Philadelphia.
Michigan State University's Gast Business Library partners with the College of Social Science’s Go for the Green financial literacy team to cosponsor MSU’s participation in Money Smart Week, a national program sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. As part of this weeklong event, the Go for the Green team hires a financial literacy-focused author to come to campus and speak with students about managing their money.
As the holidays approach, people might feel overwhelmed by the expectation of purchasing gifts for friends and family. This can be a great opportunity for your library to provide a program or highlight resources on frugal gift-giving and provide some budgeting education, too. Frugal doesn’t have to mean shabby, but can instead be heartfelt and useful.
COVID-19 isn't just a health crisis; for many Americans, the pandemic has caused economic turmoil as well. As members of ALA's Financial Literacy Interest Group, we know the importance of financial capability skills, and this was a moment for us to step up.
So facing statewide "shelter at home" orders this spring, public and academic libraries made a quick shift to online financial literacy programming. Here’s what we learned along the way.