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BRIC Partners with Brooklyn Public Library to Offer Media Education to Brooklyn Residents

BRIC Will Offer Training in Digital Photography and Photo Enhancement, Podcasting and Digital Storytelling, and Short-Form Video Technique in BPL’s New, Innovative Shelby White and Leon Levy Information Commons

Brooklyn, NY | January 16, 2013 – This month, BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn and Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) begin a partnership to expand media education programs for Brooklyn residents. BRIC will be BPL’s lead media education partner, offering free courses and equipment at BPL’s new state-of-the-art, 5,500-square-foot Shelby White and Leon Levy Information Commons, designed by Toshiko Mori and located at BPL’s Central Library on Grand Army Plaza. In the coming months, BRIC’s role will expand to include BPL branches throughout the borough.   

During the first phase of the partnership with BPL (January – March), BRIC will offer a series of two-hour, single-session courses on Thursdays at the Information Commons. In collaboration with BPL, BRIC has designed four two-hour, highly accessible courses for patrons of the Central Library. Classes, available by free reservation and taught by BRIC’s professional media instructors, will offer advanced media training in digital photography and photo enhancement, podcasting and digital storytelling, and short-form video technique.

Leslie G. Schultz, President of BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn, said, “ Through this partnership, we hope to significantly enhance the impact of our work by making it more accessible to the millions of people who use BPL each year.”

Linda E. Johnson, President & CEO of Brooklyn Public Library, said, “Brooklyn Public Library’s collaboration with BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn will create many new learning opportunities for our patrons. As our lead media education partner, we are deeply grateful for their support and expertise as we work to advance digital literacy throughout the borough.”

Media education at BPL is a natural extension of BRIC’s current programs. BRIC provides resources to launch, nurture and showcase artists and media makers. The organization advances access to, and understanding of, arts and media by presenting free and low-cost programming, and by offering education and other public programs to people of all ages. Since its founding in 1979, BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn has also presented multi-disciplinary arts and media programs that reflect Brooklyn’s creativity and diversity, including the Celebrate Brooklyn! Performing Arts Festival, contemporary art exhibitions at BRIC Rotunda Gallery, and Brooklyn-focused television programming.

BRIC is the community media access television organization for Brooklyn. Its community media programs offer residents free access to media production facilities and equipment, and low-cost media education through the Brooklyn Center for Media Education. Upon completion of basic production classes, students become Certified Community Producers, which allows them to use BRIC’s production facility and equipment free-of-charge to create their own Brooklyn Free Speech TV programs cablecast on BCAT TV Network.

The Shelby White and Leon Levy Information Commons marks a new era of public service for Brooklyn Public Library, offering Brooklynites up-to-date resources in an inviting, dynamic and multifunctional space that is the first of its kind in a public library in New York City. Students and researchers will have access to the Library’s growing suite of electronic resources, while small groups will find private areas for collaborative thinking, working and creating. Writers, designers and creators will discover a focused space to work on laptops or library computers, and jobseekers and professionals will find the classes, training and expert Library staff they need to advance their skills.

The Information Commons’ features include, in addition to BRIC programming:

  • Seating and outlets for 70 laptop users
  • A 36-seat wireless learning lab where patrons can take workshops led by library staff or conduct their own training sessions
  • Seven private meeting rooms equipped with electronic whiteboards and other technologies for group seminars and one-on-one research
  • 25 workstations with desktop computers offering traditional software packages, as well as advanced graphic design and video editing programs
  • A recording studio equipped with video DSLR camera, microphones and iMac editing station
  • A help desk providing information and on-demand training

As the cornerstone of the Library’s efforts to advance digital literacy and engagement across the borough, this technology-rich, flexible space embodies BPL’s new strategic plan. From providing laptops and digital literacy instruction to jobseekers, to installing self-check technology in branches throughout the borough, to making iPads and e-readers available to Brooklyn’s youngest readers, Brooklyn Public Library is committed to innovating and expanding its services for the 21st Century library user.

About BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn in 2013
Later this year, BRIC will open BRIC Arts | Media House at 647 Fulton Street, in the heart of the Downtown Brooklyn Cultural District. BRIC House will serve as a home for artists and audiences—a place where emerging and established artists can create work that deepens their practice and engages the diverse communities of Brooklyn. BRIC House will include a state-of-the art flexible performance space with a capacity of 250-400; a 3,000 square-foot art gallery; a flexible use performance space; a media center with television studios, editing facilities, and classrooms; and BRIC’s administrative offices – all anchored around a town square lobby featuring a café and an informal amphitheater space. Learn more at

About Brooklyn Public Library
Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) is an independent library system for the 2.5 million residents of Brooklyn. It is the fifth largest library system in the United States with 60 neighborhood libraries located throughout the borough. BPL offers free programs and services for all ages and stages of life, including a large selection of books in more than 30 languages, author talks, literacy programs and public computers. BPL’s eResources, such as eBooks and eVideos, catalog information and free homework help, are available to customers of all ages 24 hours a day at their website:

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