University Library News
Georgia State University

Georgia State University Library Awarded NEH Grant to Preserve Media Collections

ATLANTA—The Georgia State University Library has been awarded $344,315 from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to create a sustainable facility to store and preserve media collections. The award is part of NEH’s “Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections” program, which provides funding to cultural institutions, such as libraries, archives, museums and historical organizations, to preserve humanities collections that facilitate research, strengthen teaching and provide opportunities for lifelong learning.

Georgia State’s project, “Creating a Sustainable Preservation Media Storage Environment,” was one of 17 selected for funding by NEH out of 57 applicants nationally. Grant funds will be used to upgrade the environmental controls for the space allocated by the university, a former bank vault. The NEH funds will include the cost of new high-efficiency HVAC equipment and a walk-in freezer for the most delicate media materials.

“Our media collections, which include 10 million photographic prints and negatives, document the history of Atlanta and the Southeast,” said Jeff Steely, Dean of Libraries. “We are grateful to the NEH for their support of our project to create a suitable environment for these irreplaceable treasures.”

According to Christina Zamon, Head of Special Collections & Archives, “the focus of this grant is to preserve our vast multi-media holdings. Since the founding of Special Collections & Archives in 1971, photographs, film and magnetic media have been a major component of all collections acquired and housed at GSU. As a result, we now have one of the largest multimedia collections in Georgia. The collection attracts use by major streaming services, networks, studios, publishers and the like. This project ensures that we can preserve and continue to provide this service and become a premier destination for researchers from around the globe.”

The University Library’s goal is to raise the full $3.5 million cost of the planned media storage facility by early 2024, with construction expected to be completed by the end of 2025. Once finished, the renovated space will allow the library to consolidate all photographic prints and negatives, slides, films, microform and magnetic media into this specially conditioned environment for long term preservation and ongoing access by scholars and members of the community.

To learn more about supporting the project, contact Tiffany Judkins, Director of Development, at

About the National Endowment for the Humanities

The National Endowment for the Humanities was created in 1965 as an independent federal agency. It supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the NEH and its grant programs is available at

About the Georgia State University Library

The Georgia State University Library houses more than 1.9 million physical volumes, 700,000 ebook titles, 230,000 serial titles and 280 online databases. The libraries on each of the six campuses provide access to the expertise of librarians and staff dedicated to student success. Special Collections and Archives documents the history of the university, Atlanta and life in the South, with particular strengths in social change movements during the late 20th and early 21st centuries. The 300,000 sq. ft. Atlanta Campus location offers seating for more than 2,000, 55 group study rooms, an outdoor terrace and access to leading-edge computing and visualization technology. To learn more about the University Library, visit