Depository Spotlight: University of California San Diego, Geisel Library

The U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) is spotlighting the University of California San Diego’s (UCSD’s) Geisel Library for not only meeting the information needs of their patrons in creative and extraordinary ways, but also demonstrating a commitment to the preservation of Government information and working to advance user access to information outside of their own geographic area. The library, which is named for Theodor (Dr. Seuss) and Audrey Geisel, due to their generous support, has been a member of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) since 1963. While being named for the renowned children’s author is notable, the UCSD depository has made many significant contributions to the FDLP community and its patrons.

One of these contributions is the very popular Lib Guide, GovSpeak: A Guide to U.S. Government Acronyms and Abbreviations. The guide was the creation of UCSD’s Government Information Librarian Kelly Smith, in response to numerous reference questions from patrons trying to identify Government acronyms. The guide now is one of several Government information subject guides available from UCSD and lists 4,200 entities (and is continuously updated). GovSpeak provides a much-needed service, as is demonstrated by its 3,500 average users each month. It is the go-to source for those who need to decipher any one of the thousands of acronyms which are employed at all levels of the Federal Government. GovSpeak was recognized as one of Library Journal’s “Best Free Reference” resources in 2012.

The UC San Diego Library, in cooperation with the other University of California libraries, is also engaging in the UC Federal Documents Archive (FedDocArc). With this project, the UC libraries work with Google to ensure that every Federal document held across the UC libraries is digitized and available via HathiTrust, expanding access to the combined collections. Recognizing the need for preservation of the print collection, the group also is able to identify a single print copy of every Federal document in the UC libraries to be held as a permanent archival copy for the UC system.

Geisel Library’s Government Information Librarians also participate in UC/Stanford Government Information Librarians (GILS). The goal of GILS is to improve University-wide collections and access to Government information in print and electronic formats and enable communication and sharing expertise among California’s Government Information Librarians.

The Federal depository staff at UCSD exhibit an extraordinary level of commitment to the mission of the FDLP. GPO congratulates the Geisel Library for its significant contributions to the FDLP and their steadfast commitment to increasing free public access to U.S. Government information.