The Library's Mission:
- To offer students access to all necessary materials for engineering studies at SCE
- To bestow students with the skills required for collecting, analyzing and evaluating engineering information
- To encourage students to develop lifelong learning habits, enabling them to maintain their position at the spearhead of science and technology
- To provide a learning environment and an academic atmosphere where students can interact
In 1995, The Academic College of Engineering in the Negev (the previous name of SCE), opened its gates in collaboration with the veteran Technological College of Be'er Sheva (TCB). In its early days, the library served both of these institutions.
In 2002, the Isaac Shavit Library was first opened at the Be'er Sheva campus, joined by the Pamela and Stanley Chase Library in 2005. Both these libraries were designed by the world renowed architect Haim Dotan and interior designer Ben Biran. The founder and first director of the library was Dr. Bob Weintraub.
The establishing of an SCE campus in Ashdod also saw the opening of the Jabotinsky Library. The Bnei Brit campus opened afterwards, along with the Beni Brit Library. The first head of Ashdod campus libraries was Mr. Hananya Goodman.
During its first years, the library purchased approximately 40,000 volumes, lent out books and laptops at both campuses combined.
Today, the library's mission is to facilitate the use of large-scale, academic level digital databases, and to offer guidance and bibliographic instruction. The library also provides an excellent learning environment for approximately 5,000 students and faculty members.
The purchase of the complete Springer digital collection, comprising 90,000 digital books, was a significant breakthrough for the library. Today, this collection contains 115,000 books and hundreds of periodicals. Furthermore, the library provides access to the complete texts of digital books and journals of various publishing houses, such as Wiley, IEEE, ALSBIR, Francis and Taylor, CRC Press, Oxford University Press, and others. These databases are in line with the disciplines and fields of research at SCE, encompassing all areas of engineering, exact sciences and mathematics, and are all written in English. Throughout the years, the library has received significant book donations, including two very special collections – that of Professor Ernesto Bergman, one of the pioneering Zionists that established the infrastructure ground for science in Israel, and that of the Jewish chemists of Dr. Weintraub.
Due to the complexity and variety of bibliographic sources, the bibliographic guidance and instruction services offered by professional librarians are vital for the success of the educational programs and students' research projects.
The libraries at SCE use an online, unified catalog, Ex Libris Aleph System and the Primo search engine, thus granting exclusive SCE users access to quality academic sources at any time, from any place.
SCE libraries are leaders in their ability to implement updated management approaches, which include unlimited access to electronic databases from outside the college. Students and faculty members alike no longer need to physically come to the library in order to access study or research materials. As a result, the library has been transformed from a silent place where books are stored to a meeting place for students, where they can study together or meet with their lecturers. For this reason, eating and talking are allowed within the library. This is essentially the new generation of libraries: a place for mutual learning and academic sharing.
Dr. Weintraub, the founding director of SCE libraries, recalls:
"I was in the audience during the opening ceremony of the Pamela and Stanley Chase Library. I remember Mr. Chase's profound opening remarks, in which he reminded us of the era in the United States, when there was a quota system in place for Jewish students who wished to study at universities. He stated that he wanted to donate to an institution that does not maintain such a quota system. Years passed. When Mr. Chase became ill with a serious illness, I wrote to Mr. and Mrs. Chase, thanking them again for their great generosity and I brought up his opening remarks. I mentioned that we placed the names Pamela and Stanley Chase at the main entrance to the library forever, and that all students, regardless of religion, come to study at the Chase Library. He thanked me for my letter and, not long after, passed away."