Standing at the center of the academic experience on campus is the University Libraries. The libraries serve as the university’s intellectual center, fulfilling the information and research needs of a diverse population on and off campus. Across our libraries, students and faculty from multiple disciplines gather to exchange ideas, explore our collections, participate in cultural events, and experiment with innovative tools that enrich teaching and learning.

The University Libraries hold membership in the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), the most prestigious library association in North America. Our seven locations received more than 2.8 million visits annually onsite and received 1.9 million through the website. Visitors utilize our collections of more than 2.4 million books, journals media resources, and a myriad of electronic resources.

Support for the Libraries will help us advance the university's highest academic priorities. New contributions will allow us to introduce new tools to support scholarly work, expand our collections in strategic ways, and digitize more of our unique resources. Thank you for your interest and generous support.


Giving Opportunities

The resource needs of the University Libraries are diverse and widespread. Gifts from alumni and friends are vital to making the difference between a "good" library and an "excellent" library. It is not how much you give – it's that you give that makes the difference! Every gift counts and you will have a real impact on the lives of U of L students.

Please consider a gift in support of one of the following areas of need:



As technology has advanced beyond the printed word, the Library has evolved beyond a physical collection of buildings housing books, documents and other materials. To safeguard fragile holdings and meet the growing demand for online accessibility, the University Libraries Digital Collections was created to convert text, images, audio and video to digital format.

Digitization funding is needed to expand access to the treasures held in Archives and Special Collections.


Robotic Retrieval System

The Robotic Retrieval System located in Ekstrom Library is a unique storage system for many of the libraries books, journals and periodicals. One of only 20 such systems in North America, it allows for the storage of 1.2 million volumes on site, retrieved by four robotic cranes. The system is operating at 50% capacity with two cranes and storage for 600,000 books.

Funding is needed to purchase two cranes and additional shelving and bins to operate at full capacity.


Conservation Endowment

Archives and Special Collections holds the unique and most valuable materials of the University of Louisville Libraries system. Books, manuscripts, maps, historic documents, photographs and prints are available to anyone who requests them. However, frequent handling takes a toll, and steps must be taken to conserve the artifacts even as we work to enhance digital access.

A conservation endowment would provide annual income dedicated to the repair of these rare materials and secure their legacy for generations to come.


Artists' Books Endowment

Artists’ books are works of art in book form produced in limited editions. The artists’ book collection is a teaching collection and serves as a bridge between the library and classroom. Enthusiastic students come into the library to view them and once here, we introduce them to other library resources.

An endowment fund specifically for artists’ books would allow the library to enlarge its collection and provide for the long-term continuation of a highly successful program.


Library Collections and Materials

  • Library Subject Endowments to purchase books and other resources
  • Journal Subscriptions (online and print)
  • Research Databases: provide access to e-books, journals, magazines, and newspapers.


Fund for UofL Libraries

To provide unrestricted support directed to areas of greatest need.


Capital Improvements

Physical updates to provide modern individual and collaborative study space.



Computers, software, laptops, tablets, audio/video materials and specialized software for multi-media productions.