TRAILS & MUS
The Treasure State Academic Information & Library Services organization, is all about making higher education accessible in the state of Montana. If you are a student/staff/faculty member at a Montana institution, you have likely already used TRAILS services and did not know it! TRAILS' 24 academic libraries work together to bring you excellent digital resources, access to libraries across the state, high quality research tools, and more helping students every day to succeed in their education.
The Montana University System governs all public institutions within the state to provide a policy, structure, advocacy, and support to the 16 institutions it serves. Through the Office of the Commissioner for Higher Education, the works with each institution to maintain credible, quality educational practices and processes.
TRAILS believes in making higher education accessible and affordable to all. Affordable textbooks are a natural place for TRAILS and academic libraries as a profession to advocate for change. In 2018, TRAILS approached the MUS Board of Regents with a proposal to partner in this effort. As addressing affordability is a strategic goal for the MUS, the Board of Regents and the Commissioner's office voted to support and fund this work. In that act, a partnership and program was born.
With its initial investment to the program and half a million dollars for faculty stipends, the MUS enabled TRAILS to begin the statewide textbook affordability and OER work it had been working towards. This collaboration and support is making a difference across Montana, a difference that is growing regularly and will continue to do so with your help and support.
Join us in this work by becoming more informed, participating in educational opportunities, outreach events, and changing your courses to using no-cost or low-cost materials. We are here to help you do that.