The enrollment period for PLOW Round 8 is now open! Sign up now, with training in February 2014.
The Web site and e-mail hosting service is provided free of charge for Iowa public libraries that:
- Want to improve library service to their community by having their own Web site, but don’t know how
- Already have a Web site and want to make it even better
- Dislike having to change e-mail addresses each time they change Internet service providers (ISP)
- Want to offer every library staff member their own e-mail address
The Web sites are preloaded with a variety of local information specific to each library, including links to local catalogs, location, hours, contacts, and trustees. Library customers will also have access to state-wide resources, such as EBSCOHost and FirstSearch databases, through their local library’s Web site. As library staff members are trained and become comfortable with their library’s Web site, they will be able to add their own content.
Through the e-mail hosting service, regardless of the ISP, each public library will be able to have consistent and stable e-mail addresses making it easier to communicate with customers. In other words, when a library changes ISPs, the library’s e-mail address will remain the same.
In addition, there is technical support provided by a full-time computer / technical support person available to public libraries by phone and e-mail. Training will be provided in-person in two six-hour classes.
To participate in the program, your library must:
- Have high speed Internet access and continue to pay for it
- Enrollment is open for PLOW Round 8;
- Attend the required training:
- Class 1 is scheduled for February 7 -OR- February 11, 2014 in Des Moines at Iowa Library Services office building.
- Class 2 will be held at various places around the state in March 2014.
- Complete and return a , or fill out this online form by December 14, 2013.
- Be able to devote at least one staff hour per week to maintain and update your Web site
If you have questions please contact Marie Harms, 515-281-3464, 800-248-4483 or firstname.lastname@example.org, FAX 515-281-6191.
- PLOW was the most visible part of a $749,000 Staying Connected grant awarded to the State Library of Iowa from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to sustain and expand public access computing in Iowa public libraries.
- In PLOW Round 1, the State Library provided 275 libraries with their own Web sites and stable and consistent E-mail services. In PLOW Round 2, there were approximately 45 participants. PLOW Round 3 had 37 libraries.
- All PLOW libraries were upgraded to Plone version 3.3 in June 2009
- PLOW Round 4 began in February 2010 with 38 libraries participating.
- PLOW Round 5 began in February 2011 with 14 libraries participating.
- PLOW Round 6 began in February 2012 with 16 libraries participating.
- PLOW Round 7 began in February 2013 with 13 libraries participating.