Library receives $15,000 STEAM grant

The Purcell Public Library has been selected as one of 12 libraries to participate in the STAR Net STEAM Equity Project, a competitive grant program that will enable the library and its collaborators to offer special programs, educational products, and exhibitions.

The STEAM Equity project — where STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math — is designed specifically for libraries in rural communities with sizeable Latinx populations.

Through this project, residents of Purcell and beyond are invited join this effort to empower tweens and their families in equitable STEAM learning and career paths by building off of their existing strengths, interests, and diverse cultures. “We are so excited to be chosen through a competitive application process for this amazing opportunity,” said Purcell Public Library branch manager Rebekah Lynam.

“We are looking forward to showing that STEAM subjects offer ways to approach our personal and community needs and to inspire creativity, collaboration, and the curiosity to learn more. We’re delighted to have the opportunity to collaborate with our community members to launch fun learning opportunities, and we will be working together to encourage participation by community members who are under-represented in STEM fields, especially Hispanic families and individuals, and women and girls.”

During the four-year project, the library will receive $15,000 to buy STEAM learning materials and offer programs especially to meet the needs and interests of tweens and their families.

The STAR Net STEAM Equity Project is offered by the National Center for Interactive Learning at the Space Science Institute, the American Library Association, Twin Cities PBS, Institute for Learning Innovation, and Education Development Center, with funding from the National Science Foundation.

Library reopens with limited services


The Purcell Public Library continues services to the public with multiple guidelines in place for the safety of customers and staff during the coronavirus pandemic. Many services are still available, but customers who visit should note several changes:

PLS branches are now open for browsing and Wi-Fi access in a “grab-and-go” environment. Limits on public computer continue to be limited to encourage the “grab-and-go” model. Customers are welcome to spend some time at the library studying but we may ask you to shorten your visit so that others also can spend some time in the library.

Due to recent increases in coronavirus cases throughout the PLS service area, face coverings will be required for all customers ages 12 and up while inside the library. 

Customers are able to reserve a time slot for public computer use in advance of physically coming to the library by calling 405-792-0777. After calling, you will be prompted to follow the steps in the automated phone system to select your library and place the reservation. Please have your library card number and PIN number available when you call. Two 30-minute computer sessions may be accessed daily. The library also can be used for copying, faxing and scanning. 

Pickup of materials also is available and may be done through a curbside service. Parking spaces will be designated for curbside pickup, and customers should follow the instructions on the sign at their parking space after they arrive.

Returned items initially are being quarantined for safety, so they may show as checked out on accounts for several days after they are returned. Please note that late fees will not be assessed for any of these items.

The library's digital and virtual resources, which have seen an increase in use during the closing, continue to be an option for those more comfortable staying home. Thousands of choices are offered through the OverDrive, Hoopla and Kanopy services available here. Digital items are also available on mobile devices through the PLS Connect app which can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play.

This is an unprecedented time and we are grateful for your continued support and patience. Please continue to monitor our website and social media pages for further information and digital programming and activities.