Starting summer 2023

Not everyone starting a business has equal access to support; a new program currently in the works at the Tioga Community Library hopes to start lowering that barrier to entry.

Libraries as Launchpads was launched in 2017 through a partnership with The New Mexico State Library, Creative startups, and New Mexico's public and tribal libraries to provide greater access to resources for entrepreneurs as they sow the first seeds of their business dreams.

The Tioga Community Library has received one of only three scholarships awarded to small and rural libraries for the upcoming Libraries as Launchpads: Certification One program. Tioga will become the first Libraries as Launchpads library in the upper midwest.

Starting in early March, Librarian Sandy Clark will complete an eight-week course to complete the certification. Once certified, the Tioga Community Library will be able to equip people wanting to test an idea for its potential to be a profitable business. In addition, library patrons will have access to the Libraries as Launchpads Resource Portal, where entrepreneurs can access a self-guided program to test their business ideas at their own pace.

Why Libraries as Launchpads? When we dug into Tioga's real numbers and stats, I was surprised at what they showed. According to the 2020 census, just 9.4% of Tioga residents have a bachelor's degree or higher. The state average is 31%, and Williston is at 35%. Libraries as Launchpads is a program that will help point those without a formal business education in the right direction as they roll up their sleeves to start cultivating their business.

Libraries are among the most trusted sources of information in the US, according to a 2016 study by Pew Research. However, while a plethora of business resources are available, they are not easily accessible to those who do not know where to look. Libraries as Launchpads will help to make resources more accessible to budding entrepreneurs of Tioga and the surrounding area.

Libraries as
Launchpads Program

Tioga Community Librarian

learn more about the Program