Making the Case for Membership
If you’re reading this, you are already a NYLA member - so why are we wasting eBulletin space on an article about becoming a member?
Because we need your help.
We have repeatedly found that the most effective way to convince someone to become a new NYLA member is for them to hear about it from an existing member like YOU - a colleague or friend who is already doing their part to support the statewide advocacy organization that, in turn, supports ALL of New York’s libraries!
NYLA will, of course, always advocate on behalf of all libraries, not just those who are organizational members or whose staff are personal members. But to be the most effective advocates for increased library funding, to provide the best continuing education and professional opportunities for New York’s library staff, and to continue to be a leader among statewide library organizations, we need a little support in return.
There are many key reasons that dues-paying membership is so crucial to the success of NYLA’s mission. Again, we know that YOU already know this, having taken the leap and become a member yourself. But here are some helpful points to make to others who may (for reasons we can’t fully fathom) be hesitant to join:
Membership dues help support our Legislative Committee, which represents you in Albany and in Washington D.C. by initiating, recommending, and supporting legislation pertinent to the development and strengthening of library service in the state.
Membership also goes towards supporting our annual Library Advocacy Day (which anyone can attend and support, NYLA member or not). This statewide event brings together librarians, trustees and supporters in Albany to discuss library issues and concerns with Senators, Assembly members, the Governor's executive staff, and other key decision-makers.
Professional Development, Workshops, Continuing Education, & Networking Opportunities
You already know about the annual Conference, which each year offers a full day of pre-conference CE workshops, 75 programs, a Trade Show with 130+ vendors of library-focused goods and services, special events with famous authors, and the chance for super fun karaoke and other shenanigans with your colleagues from across the state.
But did you also know (and want to make sure you tell your non-member friends!) that many NYLA Sections host their OWN annual Conferences? Or that the NYLA Leadership and Management Academy allows mid-career library professionals to gain the practical knowledge and skills critical to becoming a library leader? Or that NYLA members have free or reduced rates for NYLA e-Institute webinars on topics ranging from succesfully leading a smaller library to working with teen volunteers to boosting early literacy?
Scholarships & Awards
We recognize the best in New York State librarianship and library advocacy through awards and scholarships that recognize outstanding commitment and dedication to the library profession and the statewide library community.
The Most Up-to-Date News & Information
NYLA members receive (and can submit content to!) all NYLA publications, including the bi-monthly eBulletin and the weekly News You Can Use. Members also receive the Grant Station Insider, a weekly newsletter with information on available grant opportunities. While we communicate important news items as widely as possible and far beyond our membership, NYLA members get lots of this information before the general public and are given the opportunity to contribute.
Of course, members also enjoy the financial perks of NYLA membership, including discounted rates at the annual Conference and other events, and Vendor Partner discounts on various products and services. But no one joins for monetary reasons, of course - you do it for the priceless satisfaction of knowing that you are doing your part to support what is really YOUR Association.
We’re really excited and grateful that you are a NYLA member. Without you, we wouldn’t have made it these past 125 years. Help us bring in new members and continue our mission for the next 125 years. Encourage your colleagues to become personal members, and push for your library to become and organizational member.