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NJSL's first step was ensuring that all public libraries were equipped with the basic technology.
Using grant funding, NJSL subscribed to a number of databases and online resources for job seekers and small-business owners, such as Learning Express, LLC's Job & Career Accelerator; Career Transitions from Gale, part of Cengage Learning; and Frost & Sullivan market research reports.
The centerpiece of the BTOP grant is NJWorks@yourlibrary, a public awareness campaign and website (www.njworks.org) that NJSL developed to showcase the job services offered through the grant.
The BTOP grant funds NJSL's partnership with New Jersey's Community College Consortium for Workforce and Economic Development.
NJSL provides a variety of NJWorks@yourlibrary marketing materials to libraries, from banners and brochures to decals, to promote the service to as many people as possible.
To date, NJSL delivered 845 laptop and desktop computers to 124 public libraries in need around the state and upgraded networks and broadband connectivity at 79 libraries.
Through NJSL's partnership with the state's community college consortium, local community colleges host free job training sessions for library staff members and patrons.
NJSL also established NJWorks@YourLibrary, a public site at www.njworks.org that gives N.J.
Peggy Cadigan, associate state librarian and director of the Library Development Bureau at NJSL, says the grant positions libraries as a vital community resource.
She joined NJSL in the Library Development Bureau in 2003 and has served as deputy director of the bureau for the last 2 years.
If BTOP funding is awarded to the NJSL, the foundation will pay the 20% matching funding required by the BTOP.
Zangara was selected for his work on NJSL's JerseyConnect, a statewide network and technology services organization that allows NJSL to provide broadband Internet access, email hosting, Web site hosting, and technical support to public libraries.
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