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Fox Chapel

Fox Chapel, Sharpsburg library patrons offered free access to Skillshare database

Tawnya Panizzi
| Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018, 2:36 p.m.
Cooper-Siegel Community LIbrary sits at 403 Fox Chapel Road in Fox Chapel.
Tawnya Panizzi | Tribune-Review
Cooper-Siegel Community LIbrary sits at 403 Fox Chapel Road in Fox Chapel.

Cooper-Siegel Community Library in Fox Chapel and Sharpsburg is offering free premium membership to Skillshare, an online database of 18,000 self-paced classes.

Skillshare has short classes geared for adults and teens in areas like design, photography, cooking, art, entrepreneurship, film and writing, said Kelley Beeson, head of adult services.

Taught by practitioners and artists, Skillshare boasts well-known teachers like author Seth Godin and journalist Soledad O'Brien.

“You're gaining valuable insight and skills taught directly by a person in the biz, not a hired instructor,” said Lauren Williams, library marketing director.

Card holders at Cooper-Siegel and its Sharpsburg branch are eligible for the free membership offer. The premium service is normally $15 a month and includes access to all classes. A free version of the service includes a limited amount of classes available to users. The library is offering its nine premium memberships to patrons in 30-day increments.

“After the free 30 days of premium, the patron's account just reverts back to the free version,” Williams said. “But if they still have premium classes they want to take, they can check out the premium membership again. It works seamlessly with the same login and password.”

A waiting list for memberships will be developed when all nine are checked out. Signing up for the service can be done on any computer.

Beeson has already used the service, learning how to make Asian dumplings in less than 35 minutes.

“I also took a course last fall called ‘Drawing as Self Discovery,' which has breathed new life into my 30-year journaling habit,” she said.

The 40-minute course was split into 10 quick sessions and Beeson said she discovered an online community of doodlers, illustrators and journalers to connect with through use of a hashtag on Instagram.

Williams said anyone looking to further their career, polish up on a hobby or learn a new skill can likely find a topic to dive into on Skillshare.

For a membership, stop at the reference desk or call 412-828-9520, ext. 15.

Tawnya Panizzi is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. Reach her at 412-782-2121, ext. 2, or via Twitter@tawnyatrib.

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