From Temple Libraries:
A year ago, Tony Ransome moved from Baltimore to York Street in North Philadelphia. He had visited Philadelphia in the summers of his childhood. But in a city relatively new to him, Mr. Ransome said, his professional work as a paratransit driver occupied most of his waking hours.
“I was doing 10- and 11-hour shifts until I broke my foot,” the 59-year-old said. “You could almost say the injury was a blessing in disguise because it allowed me to finish a book that was a passion project of mine and personal to my heart.”
While out of work, he became a regular visitor to Temple’s Paley Library. He utilized the library’s public-access computer stations and printers, borrowed books and tapped into the staff’s collective expertise.
This enabled him to self-publish yet another book of poetry, his fourth.
Mr. Ransome is one of roughly 1,000 visitors who utilize the community resident privileges at Temple Libraries. Now open to the public in its new space, Temple’s transformational Charles Library will offer access to services, resources and exclusive space intended for the community—just as its predecessor did.
Emily Schiller, a bibliographic assistant with Temple Libraries, is the staffer who helped Mr. Ransome. Schiller, CLA ’16, is the library system’s guest computer program coordinator. While writing his book, he encountered trouble attempting to access documents in his email account. Schiller worked closely with him to recover the documents.
Their work paid off: He sold all 200 copies of his poetry book during its first round of printing. Soon, he plans to make the book available on Amazon.
Over the last year, the library system has helped nearly 100 community members with specific job-related queries, Schiller said. Even during the typically slow month like July, especially as Temple Libraries relocated to Charles, Schiller and the staff managed 10 job- or GED-related requests.