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The Natrona County Library can trace its roots back to May 20, 1910, with the grand opening of Natrona County’s Carnegie Library. While our library’s size, offerings, and patrons have grown and changed over the last century, one thing hasn’t changed: Our library has remained a pivotal resource within the community, connecting our citizens to resources that help them thrive.

We are believers that libraries aren’t made, but rather that they grow. Our library is a community pillar that helps imaginations expand, encourages people to find what inspires them, and provide training and resources they need to make their dreams become realities. In order to continue to serve our community in this way, we’ve had to keep pace with the rapidly evolving world around us. We have seen firsthand that the library can be life-changing for our patrons, and we always seek new and innovative ways to nurture their desire to be lifelong learners.

Dramatic shifts in how people access and accumulate information, train our workforce and develop new skills are causing us all to evolve. When we opened our doors in 1910, our movies, creation station, language classes, databases, and many other services we currently offer didn’t exist. We were a warehouse of books. In recent decades that has changed. Embracing technological shifts has been critical to our success in serving the public. We embrace our role as a leader in our community’s technological process, and we focus on the future of the workplace in the digital age.

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With the advent of the web, the very nature by which we educate ourselves and experience the world around us has been transformed. This is no more evident than in the workplace, where digital spreadsheets and documents to track activity are the norm, and nearly all of us use email to communicate throughout the day. Ensuring members of our community have access to the training they need to learn these digital skills is a service we have provided for years. Library staff regularly offer group technology trainings and one-to-one Book-a-Librarian services so our patrons can be competitive in today’s workforce.

We’re continuing to strengthen our role of being Natrona County’s leader in free technology training and assistance by hosting a ‘Grow with Google’ event next week. The ‘Grow with Google’ nationwide tour is the tech company’s initiative to help create economic opportunities for Americans through digital skills training. On Monday, the tour will stop at the Natrona County Library for a day of workshops and one-on-one trainings. Google trainers will also provide our librarians with the tools and resources to continue providing these trainings on an ongoing basis.

Skills necessary to thrive in the workplace will continue to change as technology evolves and the average workplace becomes more digitized. We hope that more and more members of our community will begin to see our library like they see our city — a place full of opportunities that need exploring. At the Natrona County Library, it is our job to make sure that we are a place of equity and lifelong learning for all. We hope to see you soon.

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Lisa Scroggins is executive director of the Natrona County Library.

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