University of Wisconsin–Madison

Creating an engaged library

How can you make your library the heart of the community? To survive and thrive in the current political and fiscal climate, libraries must reflect their communities’ needs and wants.

Learn the basics of turning outward to engage with your community and make your library more relevant and beloved than ever, with small changes or bold new projects.

At a glance

When: Oct 23-Nov 19, 2017

Where: Online

Cost: $125 (10% discount if you register by Oct 8)

CE Credit: 1.4 CEUs/14 LEUs

Program: #3043

Questions? Contact Meredith Lowe or Anna Palmer

Register online

Register by phone: Pyle Center, 608.262-2451

Register by fax or mail: Print out a registration form

Login information will be emailed a few days before the course begins.

Course description


  • What does it mean to “turn outward?”
  • Assessing your library’s current role in the community
  • Community engagement techniques
  • Leaving the library to know your community
  • Integrating community engagement into your organizational culture

Participants are required to:

  • Read weekly assignments
  • Participate in online discussions in reaction to readings and peers’ posts
  • Plan a community engagement activity


Cindy Fesemyer is the director of the Columbus (WI) Public Library. Cindy was trained in community engagement using Harwood Institute techniques and learned other community organizing tools in her previous career managing non-profit organizations.