As Evan said, definitely check out consortia; this is a large part of what they do. Beyond the state and local level there are also larger organizations like Lyrasis (http://www.lyrasis.org) that you may be able to participate in. Here is a large list from a consortium of library consortia: http://icolc.net/consortia
Library Specialist, Electronic Resources
University of Kentucky
From: Code for Libraries [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Boyd, Evan
Sent: Tuesday, February 10, 2015 2:03 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] Support for Small Libraries
Depending on the state the college is based in, the State Library or a statewide consortia for academic libraries may offer select databases as part of membership or on a partial cost recovery basis.
For instance, here in Illinois, the State Library pays for what used to be called a "FirstSearch" subscription from OCLC, and CARLI, Consortium of Academic & Research Libraries in Illinois, provides all of its paying* governing members with a subscription to Academic Search Complete and some other EBSCO products as well as the occasional "surprise" purchase based on how their financial picture is for the year (I believe this is all also subsidized by state appropriations to CARLI).
Normally, this kind of organizational access to membership or state services requires some sort of certification. The State of Illinois has a few certification questions, such as having a regularly-staffed library that is organized in some manner, and CARLI has a few of its own requirements (certification to offer degrees by the Illinois Board of Higher Education is central, plus state certification). Other states just negotiate to provide all residents of their state access to certain databases and sometimes those overlap with the academic library's needs.
They'll have to dig around and possibly contact a local consortia or librarian to see if these kinds of options are available to the school.
Best of luck,
Chicago Theological Seminary
*As a school with an FTE of 300, we pay the minimum annually, which is about $2600. They say that the fully-subsidized products we get out of our membership would cost $48,000+ if we had to pay for them on our own. Plus all the other benefits of membership in a statewide library consortia (prof. dev., networking, etc.).
From: Code for Libraries [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Mark Pernotto
Sent: Monday, February 09, 2015 6:29 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [CODE4LIB] Support for Small Libraries
I wanted to see if there were any established programs, or any advice at all, really, about assistance for small college libraries. Specifically, some kind of affiliate program for small colleges, where the small college could gain access to electronic resources of the larger institution - either through a pay-per-user method, pay by quarter/semester, or a flat fee.
The small college in question has less than 50 students, but only offers graduate degrees.
Any assistance on or off-list would be greatly appreciated!