By Cheryl Branche, MLS, MD and Ajatshatru (A.J.) Pathak, MLS, MPH, Health Professions Library

On Friday, April 15, 2016, approximately 15 members of the Library Association of the City University of New York (LACUNY) toured the Dag Hammarskjöld Library at the United Nations headquarters in New York City. Dr. Kanu Nagra of the Borough of Manhattan Community College and Alexandra de Luise from Queens College organized the tour. Six Hunter College librarians attended. In addition to Hunter College, Borough of Manhattan Community College, Bronx Community College, LaGuardia Community College and Queens College were represented. Ramona Kohrs, the United Nations library outreach and development coordinator, led the guests on a very interesting, useful and informative tour of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library.

The Dag Hammarskjöld Library is dedicated to serving the information needs of the member states’ delegates and the Secretariat staff. The Dag Hammarskjöld Library offers:

  • Professional information research support to the United Nations community, especially the United Nations member state missions and delegates. (No members of the public are allowed to use the library facility at the United Nations. There was a little let down as we learned that the United Nations was under much more security since 9/11 and that public access was very severely restricted as was access to the library and its holdings.)
  • The Dag Hammarskjöld Library offers a comprehensive collection of United Nations documentation since 1945, including print and e-resources related to the work and interests of the United Nations. The major database and the online catalog,UNBISnet, contains United Nations’ documents, speech citations since 1983 and voting records for both the Security Council and the General Assembly.
  • Member States on Record includes documents related to the action of each member state at the United Nations and maybe accessed here.
  • Business intelligence and journals may be found online also.
  • The self-service research guides describe United Nations’ documents of the General Assembly and Security Council and include special chapters on human rights, international law, peacekeeping, environment, disarmament, and the United Nations’ budget.

Ramona Kohrs, the outreach and development coordinator of the U.N. Library, showed us the different floors of the library and explained the collections and resources of the library. First, we were introduced to the main floor of the library (i.e., second floor of library building). The main floor of the library has computer terminals, study tables, an information desk, and a rich collection of books, periodicals, and documents concerning international affairs. Materials are available in all six official languages of the United Nations (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish).

Photo 1: View of the second floor of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library

Photo 2: Ramona Kohrs (facing the camera), the outreach and development coordinator of the U.N. Library, speaking to CUNY Librarians about collections and resources of the 2nd floor of Dag Hammarskjöld Library.

Afterwards, we went to the map collection. The Dag Hammarskjöld Library’s map collection is extensive. The collection contains historical, contemporary, and digital maps. Many maps are government issued, some are created by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and others are National Geographic maps. More than 80,000 maps from countries around the world and in different languages are stored here.

Next, we went to the basement area, which holds more than 10 million documents, including League of Nations treaties and other older items. Ramona shared that the U. N. has a photo library, an audio visual library, and an archive library. Ramona informed us that the U.N. documents after 1980 are available via online catalog. The documents before 1980 may be searched using the card catalog.

Photo 3: Ramona Kohrs showing a book to CUNY librarians in the basement floor of the library

Photo 4: Ramona Kohrs showing a picture book to CUNY librarians in the basement floor of the library.

Later, we went to the library computer lab to attend presentations given by members of U.N. library staff. The presentations were focused on client services units, research guides, Ask DAG, and the digitization features of the library. The U.N. Library is digitizing documents from 1945 to 1992 in the six official languages of the U.N. Three million of the 17 million documents have been digitized. (The library is looking for interns, who can assist with the digitization project). The presenters represented a cross-section of the world’s population. One presenter was from Norway; another from Israel, another from the United States and one from Germany. Light refreshments were served.

Finally, we went to a reading room of the U. N. Library, which housed the original card catalog.

Photo 5: A view of a Dag Hammarskjold Library reading room.

Photo 6:  Photo of Hunter College librarians taken in a Dag Hammarskjold library reading room. (see card catalog behind the librarians).

Afterwards, several librarians visited the bookstore.

The tour of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library was well organized, educational, interesting and enjoyable. Many thanks to LACUNY and the United Nations library staff.

N. B.: Political science students at Hunter College may benefit greatly from a tour of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library at the United Nations.


Dag Hammarskjöld Library

Library E-mail:

Telephone: 212-963-3000



M-F pAM-5:30PM

From mid-September to December: M-F 9am -6PM


United Nations Library

United Nations Headquarters

First Avenue at 46th Street

Reading Room: #L-105

New York, New York 10017

Factoid: In 1959, the Ford Foundation made at $6.3 million grate for the establishment of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library.



Posted Tuesday, May 17, 2016 - 2:06pm under UN, librarians, field trip.

You can now view a complete list of publications by our faculty members online here:

Thanks to all who attended, signed their books, and helped make Library Day 2015 a memorable experience. We appreciate all your hard work and enjoy celebrating our accomplishments together.


Posted Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - 8:51am under library day, faculty, publications.

Please join us this Thursday, April 16 at 2pm on the 3rd Floor of the Cooperman Library for our Annual Library Day Celebration!

We will celebrate faculty, staff, and student accomplishments and our libraries during National Library Week.


Posted Monday, April 13, 2015 - 12:24pm under library day.

Thanks to the CUNY Council of Chief Librarians, anyone with a valid CUNY email address can receive unlimited access to the New York Times in digital and mobile formats.

Here are the steps to follow to sign up for access:

  1. Go to
  2. Click on "Register" to create a account using your Hunter email address.
  3. At the bottom of the Welcome page, click "Continue."
  4. You will then see a "Check Your Email" message. Look for a "Confirm Your Email Address" message, which should arrive to your Hunter email within 15 minutes.
  5. Click on the link in the confirmation email. This will simultaneously verify your eligibility and grant your Academic Pass, which will provide access to for your campus's designated period.
  6. If you don't get a confirmation email, check your spam filter. If you still do not receive it, send an email from your Hunter email account to

Once you've created an account, access will simply require your Hunter New York Times login--you will not have to authenticate it through the library's website. You will see your subscription as being for "one year," although it will be renewed as the subscription continues.


  • Each day of their pass, users may access up to five free articles published between the years 1923 through 1980.  Access is unlimited to archived articles outside that 1923–1980 date range.  (Our Hunter College Libraries webpage however, has full access to New York Times articles, with digitally reproduced pages, from every issue starting in 1851).
  • Academic Passes do not include tablet apps. To use your pass on a tablet, use a web browser to go to
  • Academic Passes do not include print copies, e-reader editions, Premium Crosswords, or the NYTimes Crosswords app.

If you already have an annual subscription to the New York Times with your Hunter email address, you can cancel it and receive a refund. If you wish to continue your own access (for example, If you get the print edition with online access), but also want to use the Hunter version, we suggest you move your original subscription to a personal email address.


Posted Thursday, August 28, 2014 - 3:28pm under .

"just"I'm looking for a book for my class."

"Do you have this textbook?"

"My teacher said the library had this book for our class. Can you help me?"

These are the questions that we hear at the start of each semester here at the Hunter College Libraries. And the answer is yes, we can help you find out if your textbooks are available at the library. You can also help yourself by learning how!

First, you should be aware that the library does not own copies of every textbook for every class, but it is a good idea to look because we do have a lot. it's up to the Professor for a course if materials are made available on reserve, so it can't hurt to ask your professor about this as well.

Reserves - what does it all mean??

Professors can place materials “on reserve” at the library. What that means is that there is at least one copy of a textbook or other material at the Reserve Desk (on the 3nd floor of the Cooperman Library, or at the Circulation Desks of the Social Work and Health Professions Libraries) that is available to be used for two hours at a time in the library. Reserve materials cannot leave the library, but you can make photocopies. Start here:

looking for something

You can search the Reserves collection by the name of your Professor, your course, or by the title or author of the work.

Sometimes you will have no choice but to get your textbooks from an outside source, which usually means laying out some cash. Thankfully, CUNY has a handy guide to help you save money on textbooks:

Hopefully, this post will help you help yourself locate the textbooks you need to succeed this semester. And as always, if you have questions you can Ask A Librarian!

Posted Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - 2:43pm under .