Erin Dorney

Blogging life & librarianship

Posts Tagged ‘libday4

A Tuesday & Wednesday in my library life.

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(Tuesday & Wednesday have been more “big chunk” kind of days where I don’t work on lots of little projects, but a few large-scale things)


9:00 – Woke up & got ready.

10:30 – Arrived at work, caught up on email.

11:00 to 12:00 – Met with the action team for our Spring Scoop event. Basically, we’re planning an event for late April open to all faculty to bring them up to speed on how the upcoming library renovation will impact students. This is in terms of what parts of the physical collection will be available during construction,  what physical items will be in storage, reminders about our many electronic resources, and discussion about ebooks and “Internet sources” as they pertain to student assignments.

1:15 – Left Millersville, drove to West Chester University.

2:30 – Arrived at West Chester and headed to the library to hang around until my class started at 4:15. I wound up on the 5th floor at a study carrel where I used my laptop to answer work emails regarding a number of things (ask a librarian icons set to go on every campus desktop image, finalized a catering order for an internal library event on Friday, chat reference publicity and discussion about the CAE events taking place later this week).

4:15 to 7:00 – Methods of Publishing class. Wow, so this class is amazing. We’re actually composing type (those little metal letter things) and using a printing press! We learned some key terms and then composed our first piece – name and address for a letterhead we will be printing at class next week. It’s completely new to me… but very fun so far. I learned about leads, slugs, points, picas, the case, the composing stick, coppers, ems and ens, etc. I have a lot to catch up on because I missed the first class for ALA Midwinter, but I plan on dedicating a lot of time to our reading this weekend.

7:15 to 10:00 – Masculinity class. This class is also a lot of fun. We’re looking at representations of masculinity in popular culture, gender stereotypes and characteristics, etc. I have to look over my syllabus this weekend and figure out what else we’ll be working on. Very interesting stuff and a very engaged and talkative class (awesome because the time passes quicker)!

11:20 (ish) – Arrived home, ate Cheerio’s, talked to my boyfriend about class and went to bed.


9:00 – Woke up & got ready.

10:30 – Arrived at work, caught up on email including some planning for the 2011 ACRL Virtual Conference Committee.

11:30 to 1:24 – Library Campaign Priority Committee Luncheon Meeting. I’m not sure how much I am supposed to talk about this since the campaign is still in its silent phase. However, suffice to say I am learning a lot about fundraising and politics! We had a great meeting today, we have some new leadership that sparked discussion and even better, action! I would love to learn more about fundraising/development/advancement in the academic realm – does anyone know of conferences/events/books or other resources that would be beneficial? I think it would really make me an even more well-rounded and valuable outreach librarian.

1:30 to 3:00 – Women’s Commission Meeting. This is the Commission I work on V-Day for. We have four meetings per semester where everyone gives updates on the different projects they are working on, so I gave a V-Day update and contributed to a few other discussions.

3:00 to 4:00 – Answered email (so much email!!!), started this blog post.

4:00 to 4:30 – Production Team Meeting for V-Day 2010. As you can see, V-Day is taking up a lot of my time lately. That’s because our performances are in early February and we’re ramping up publicity and final plans. I think this is a really important part of my job – connecting with student organizations (and students) outside of the library realm. It continually informs me about student habits and interests, provides ideas and leads on how the library can be more in-tune with student needs and wants and gives me an outlet to share what the library can do (cast members of The Vagina Monologues have turned to me for assignment advice now that they know a librarian personally). Plus, ending violence against women and girls is a cause we should all be contributing to in some way.

4:30 – Home for dinner, a workout later, and then going through my course syllabi tonight.

Written by Erin Dorney

January 27, 2010 at 7:17 PM

A Monday in my library life.

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(title setup borrowed from previous posts on Lauren’s Library Blog)

I’m an Outreach Librarian at Millersville University in Pennsylvania. This is a Monday in my library life:

7:45 – Woke up and got ready for the day. Arrived at work around 8:45 to publish blog post, check RSS feeds, Twitter, work and personal email.

A little after 9:00 – A COMM faculty member (& friend) stopped by my office to pick up some things and see if I wanted the article “It Cuts Both Ways: Fight Club, Masculinity, and Abject Hegemony” by Claire Sisco King from Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies. I’m taking two grad classes at West Chester University this semester and one of them is a special topics course  on Masculinity. Our only required book is Fight Club! I said yes (I’ll save it for my paper) and he said he would scan it and bring it to me later. Good stuff.

9:00 to 9:50 – Worked on the event program for Millersville University V-Day 2010 events (two performances of Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues” in mid-February). I volunteered to run publicity and marketing for V-Day 2009 and this year they created a new position for me on the MU Commission on the Status of Women. I’ve been working with a wonderful group of ladies on posters, tee shirts, programs, soliciting sponsors, and collaborating with our beneficiary, the Lancaster YWCA. It’s going to be a great production!

9:50 to 10:00 – Ate an apple, followed lots of new Twitter followers, checked my West Chester email to see if there were any messages about class tomorrow (none!).

10:00 to 10:30 – Worked on PR for some upcoming faculty information sessions co-sponsored by the Center for Academic Excellence, including bookmarks, handouts, and Facebook events for the library Facebook page.

10:30 – Our Interim Library Director stopped by to talk about some possible chat reference promotion. We’re now offering chat reference at our library and are looking at ways to roll out this new service to our users. Sent an email to the rest of the department about some possible steps to get more ideas/feedback.

11:00 to 12:15 – Attended a departmental meeting with the Provost and President about the future of libraries in the next 10-15 years. Exciting!

12:15 to 12:47 – Accidentally worked through lunch to make a chat reference sign and a graphic for the website. Graphic still needs work, but it’s getting there!

1:00 to 2:00 – First part of my reference desk shift, fairly uneventful. Just a few questions (mostly about textbooks – no, we don’t have them). COMM faculty member dropped off the article.

2:00 to 3:00 – Left the reference desk to be on a conference call for the College & Research Division of the Pennsylvania Library Association. I’m the new Treasurer! We started planning for our spring workshop/event. We are seeking recommendations for speakers about “the Learning Commons” (colleges & universities that created Learning Commons 4-5 years ago – what worked, what didn’t, how are people using the space differently, as well as people who might be planning for an academic Learning Commons now). If you have any names, let me know!

3:00 to 4:00 – Back to the reference desk for the second part of my shift. Again, fairly uneventful except there were a few slight issues with the new HP thin clients (running virtual desktops), but I think I figured it all out.

4:00 to 4:30 – Printed out subject librarian bookmarks for our new science librarian to use in instruction sessions, caught up on email, and made some table tent notifications to put up before an internal library event this Friday (kindly asking students to relocate to another study space for a few hours).

4:45 – Headed home!

Written by Erin Dorney

January 25, 2010 at 9:51 PM

Library Day in the Life.

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Taken March 2008, the day before my interview at Millersville University. The building I now work in every day is behind me to the left.

Library Day in the Life is a project where library workers from all types of libraries document a day or week of their work life. It was started by Bobbi Newman, and you can check out her original blog post on the event and the official wiki for more information. The fourth round is being held this week (January 25-29).

Some people choose to blog, some use Twitter, some record video or take pictures. This will be my first year participating and it just happens to fall on the first full week of classes at Millersville University where I work as an academic librarian. I’m sure I’ll have a lot to post about, and have not yet decided exactly how many days I might end up discussing. Guess we’ll see!

I think this is a great project because it provides a brief glimpse into the depth and breadth of what librarians do. Just last week at a friend’s birthday party, I swear I must have been asked at least 5-6 times, “So, what does a librarian do?” This is one of many opportunities we can take to share our stories. I can see implications for:

  • Library school students who want to share their experiences. I could easily imagine a spin-off of a Library Student Day in the Life. It would be very interesting (particularly to learn about the experiences of online and in-person LIS students) for people who have been out of school for a while to see how things work these days, what students are learning, the generational impact of technology on life and education, etc. If anyone knows of a group who has done this, leave a comment! Hmm… perhaps this is something for the Young Librarian Series
  • Administrators, students, patrons, friends, family, the media and board members who wonder what librarians do in the age of Google. This is an opportunity to share both the exciting and mundane parts of your work life. Many members of the public have no clue what librarians do (probably because many of us still haven’t nailed down elevator speeches for ourselves and our institutions). This is bad for funding, bad for our professional image, and bad for the progress and reform librarianship needs to undergo. How can we expect support without basic understanding? Informing is a key first step, and sharing your impact as a librarian could go a long way.

Some suggestions:

  • Add your name to the wiki
  • Include your job title & type of library in your blog post or video to help readers
  • Use the hashtags #libday4 (Twitter) and librarydayinthelife (blogs)
  • If you don’t have a blog/Twitter/etc, you can just create a new page in the wiki and post your day there
  • After your first post, edit your wiki entry to change your blog link to a link to your tagged posts (link directly to your day in the life post(s), not to your blog in general)
  • Add your Flickr photos or videos to the Group on Flickr

Written by Erin Dorney

January 25, 2010 at 9:50 AM