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Whiteman library: Answers for the future, knowledge of the past

Numerous reading materials for test preparation, career advancement and entertainment, line the shelves of the library at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. Music CDs, audiobooks, e-books, and recently released DVDs are also available to library patrons. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jazmin Smith/Released)

Numerous reading materials for test preparation, career advancement and entertainment, line the shelves of the library at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. Music CDs, audiobooks, e-books, and recently released DVDs are also available to library patrons. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jazmin Smith/Released)

WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- The instant patrons walk in, the newest books line the shelves to their right. Tread a little further, and the staff manning the desk welcome all with a friendly smile.

Whether for information, education or entertainment, the library offers an opportunity to experience and learn new things and get a glimpse at other cultures, histories, realms of fiction, etc., with the turn of a page or simply by pressing the play button.

The heart of resources for students, conveniently located next to the Professional Development Center, offers more than the quiet atmosphere and a collection of books; it houses an array of other commodities catering to service members and their families.

"The tri-fold mission of the Whiteman Air Force Base library is to provide access to knowledge and information essential to accomplish the Air Force mission, support education programs, and to meet the personal information needs and promote the productive use of leisure time for eligible customers," said Dennis Wilson, 509th Force Support Squadron supervisory librarian.

Filled with fresh content including books, music CDs, audiobooks and up-to-date releases of DVDs, patrons can browse the shelves or consult a librarian for help in narrowing their search.

"The Whiteman library has 29 computers with Common Access Card-enabled keyboards, two scanners, five printers, a fax machine, and wireless internet throughout the building," said Wilson.

Library cards are freely available to patrons age 10 and older and can be used to check out items, as well as access the vast entirety of online resources.

"The library's collection of over 25,000 items includes test preparation, military professional reading collections and nonfiction, in addition to online resources," added Wilson.

The online resources provided by Whiteman's library include thousands of full-text journals, periodicals, e-books, language learning and practice tests for College Level Examination Program and Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery to support academic success.

"The Whiteman library has resources that enable a student to prepare for continuing their education, which supports the student in academic achievement," said Wilson. "Libraries bridge the digital and economic divide within a community."

The library, oftentimes seen as a tool for adults, also caters to the younger generation. Through events hosted by the staff, families can come in with their young ones and nurture their love of reading. Located to the rear of the building is a youth section, in an enclosed area, with an environment tailored to youth.

"The library has an annual summer reading program during the months of June and July each year," said Wilson. "Story time and craft time are held the first and third Wednesday at 11:30 a.m., from the months of September to May for children ages 3 to 5."

The library continually adds new materials every month. To access their most updated information, check out their Facebook page at Whiteman AFB Library.

For more information on Whiteman's library or its programs, stop by during hours of operation or contact the staff at 660-687-5614.