For Release: Immediately
Department of External Affairs
Free Library of Philadelphia
1901 Vine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-1189
(215) 567-7710
FAX (215) 567-7850
Contact: Communications and Development
For Release: Immediately
Contact: Communications and Development

Free Library Launches New Languages and Learning Center at the Parkway Central Library

PHILADELPHIA, September 16, 2019—The Free Library of Philadelphia is excited to launch the Languages and Learning Center (LLC), a center dedicated to supporting the individual learning goals of Philadelphia’s adults, at the Parkway Central Library.

Led by a commitment to community engagement, the LLC will provide exceptional customer service, relevant and engaging programs and resources for adult basic education, English-language learning, world-language learning, and digital literacy. Much of this work will support workforce development. Basic print, numeracy, and digital literacy skills can be assists in finding sustainable employment.

The LLC is located with the Education, Philosophy, and Religion Department, on the Second Floor of Parkway Central.  Its collections will include world-language books, novels, and audiobooks; English-language learning books, CDs, and DVDs; career test and academic test prep books; and more. The center will offer GED prep, professional development, and English- and world-language learning programs.

“The Languages and Learning Center has plans to host English classes at Parkway Central and will work to expand similar programs across neighborhood libraries, aiming to make all adult programming inclusive and accessible to English-language learners,” said Elizabeth Fitzgerald, Director of the Languages and Learning Center. “We will also work with the Culinary Literacy Center to continue to offer Edible Alphabet, our cooking- and library-based English-language learning program.”

For world-language learners, the center has begun hosting Spanish-language learning circles using the online resource Mango Languages, with a basic Spanish series for the public and one specifically for library employees to facilitate communication with the communities they serve. Edible Alphabet has also started offering a series of classes in languages such as Italian, Mandarin, and Spanish.

The LLC’s digital literacy initiative, supported by a grant from Comcast NBCUniversal, is geared toward adults with beginner digital literacy skills. The curriculum will support people in gaining the necessary skills to enter or advance in the workforce.

For more information on the new Languages and Learning Center, visit, or stop by the department on the Second Floor of Parkway Central.


Department of External Affairs, Free Library of Philadelphia, 1901 Vine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-1189
(215) 567-7710, FAX (215) 567-7850