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Headshot of H. Austin Booth.

A Message from the Dean

Dear Friends,

At the NYU Libraries, we believe in the importance of promoting intellectual curiosity, providing space for scholastic discovery and creativity, and encouraging the critical evaluation of information. We are committed to enriching the experiences of our community with the generous support of our donors.

Our commitment to the principles of inclusion, diversity, belonging, and equity is evident throughout our collections. We hold the papers of civil rights activists James and Esther Cooper Jackson; oral histories of New York City immigrants, workers, and union organizers; early radio and TV programming from Chinese Cable Television, the Institute of African American Affairs, the Urban League of New York, and the Gay Cable Network, to name just a few of our special collections.

Donor gifts help us fulfill our commitment to serve every student and faculty member and create an environment, online and in our libraries, of inclusion and belonging. Our accessibility and accommodations initiatives connect users with a range of adaptive technologies and ensure equal access to our collections and services. From automatic doors to adjustable desks, we are implementing features to make our physical spaces even more welcoming and supportive of the entire NYU community.

Contributions to our libraries ensure that we can continue to provide rich resources to support our users, even while campus buildings remain temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to our vast collection of electronic journals and books, we have, for example, been able to provide temporary access to digitized versions of one million in-copyright books held in our print collections.

We are grateful for the difference made by our generous supporters. If you are among them, thank you. If you would like to be a supporter of the NYU Libraries, we will welcome you wholeheartedly. Your gift can make a significant impact in several ways. Please contact us if you would like to learn more.

With appreciation,

Austin Booth
Dean of Libraries

Funding Opportunities

In addition to checks and online gifts by credit card, there are different ways for donors to contribute funding that benefits our libraries. These include matching gifts, IRA rollovers, stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. Donors can also make deferred or planned gifts. Learn more about ways you can give.

Friends of Bobst Library Membership

We use this essential, unrestricted funding to expand our resources and services. Members have access to the Elmer Holmes Bobst Library and other benefits through their tax-deductible donation. Learn more about Friends of Bobst.

Library Renovations

Technology has transformed study and research since Bobst Library opened in 1973. With help from supporters, we have renovated seven of our 12 library floors to support and foster innovative, 21st-century scholarship. Digital studios, high-powered computers, powerful wifi, and new electrical systems have become essential. Other renovation projects include enhancing the Bern Dibner Library at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering in Brooklyn and the Jack Brause Library at the NYU Midtown Center. Your gift will help us transform every floor into the supportive environment needed for today’s students and other researchers. Support Renovations.

Dean’s Discretionary Fund

This fund includes opportunities to support one of the following priorities for our libraries.

Community Engagement

In spring 2020, the NYU Libraries established a new, permanent initiative to build community and social engagement with external partners, based on our special collections. These include women’s writing, social protest movements, AIDS activism, civil rights, workers’ rights, the Irish in America, and Riot Grrrl, among many others. Funding will help create events, virtual and traditional, to build bridges with communities whose roots are based in these collecting areas.

Digitization & Open Access

We strongly support open-access scholarship. For example, the NYU Press, a department within the NYU Libraries, offers an open-access imprint called Open Square. Within the Libraries, we develop and refine the technology for reading and publishing publicly accessible content, advise authors on creating accessible work, and, whenever possible, open our content to the public through digitization. Major projects include the Afghanistan Digital Library and Arabic Collections Online. Support Digitization.


Archives—unique resources essential to research—require intensive, highly skilled processing in order to become discoverable and accessible to researchers. Support Processing.


Through assessment, treatment, and reformatting, preservation technologists in the NYU Libraries’ Department of Barbara Goldsmith Preservation and Conservation care for the film, video, and audio materials held in the Department of Special Collections. In-house video and audio preservation facilities enable staff to create preservation master files and access copies. For example, thanks to a major gift from an anonymous donor, the department can now reformat a wide variety of motion picture film stock for preservation as well as create use copies for research. Support Preservation Efforts.

Naming Opportunities

As part of our libraries’ renovation projects, permanent naming recognition provides a unique way for donors to leave a legacy or honor someone they wish to memorialize. Beautiful, prominent rooms and galleries present exciting opportunities to make a lasting impact or honor your connection to NYU. Learn about our naming opportunities below. If you would like to learn more, please contact Nicole D’Andrea.

Special Collections Center

The first phase of this exciting new facility won a 2020 architectural design award sponsored by the American Library Association and the Commercial Interior Design Association. Available naming opportunities include the main reading room, two intimate exhibition galleries, and an audiovisual research room.

Bobst North Reading Rooms

These double-height, light-filled rooms overlooking Washington Square Park and midtown are the crown jewels of Philip Johnson’s design of Bobst Library, prized by many as the best study locations on campus. Donors Leah and Alain Lebec chose to name one of these beautiful reading rooms in honor of their family’s three generations of NYU alumni. The Learning Pathways Foundation has named another north reading room in memory of Richard A. Chase, MD.

Bobst Reference Room

Wide-open to the atrium and staffed by reference associates and librarians, this room is the heartbeat of the main floor of Bobst and the first stop on countless research expeditions. In addition to naming opportunities, support for the Bobst Reference Room renovations will add much-needed seating and power-supplied tables to keep laptops going for extended study and research sessions.

Endowed Positions

Endowed positions are one of the highest academic awards the University can offer faculty, and they enable NYU to recruit and retain the top scholars in their fields. Learn about our endowed positions below. If you would like to learn more about any of these opportunities, please contact Nicole D’Andrea.

The Dean of Libraries

Currently held by H. Austin Booth, this is the top position in the NYU Libraries, which consists of the Elmer Holmes Bobst Library; the Dibner Library at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering; the Jack Brause Library at the NYU Midtown Center; the libraries of the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, the Institute of Fine Arts, and the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences; the NYU Press; NYU TV; and the libraries of NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. NYU’s Dean of Libraries is nationally prominent and a leader in library innovation in the U.S.

Director of Special Collections

Currently held by Charlotte Priddle, this is the top position in NYU’s renowned Department of Special Collections, which include, among many others, the Fales Library of British and American Literature, the Tamiment Collections and Wagner Labor Archives, the Downtown Collection, the Marion Nestle Food Studies Collection, and the University Archives.

Conservation Librarian

Laura McCann currently holds this position within the NYU Libraries’ Barbara Goldsmith Department of Preservation and Conservation. This position oversees the conservation of NYU’s broad range of Special Collections material, from papyri to book volumes to plastics and much more. Conservation is both a science and an art and includes surveying, cleaning, repairing, and rehousing materials, as well as ensuring the proper storage environment.

Contact Us

NYU’s University Development and Alumni Relations (UDAR) unit is dedicated to soliciting the private funding necessary to support the strategic goals of the University in teaching, learning, and research.

If you have any questions about any of our funding opportunities or would like more details, please contact Nicole D’Andrea.