Erin Dorney

Blogging life & librarianship

Posts Tagged ‘Pennsylvania

PaLA Conference 2012

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pala 2012 logoJust sharing some of my notes and reflections from the 2012 Pennsylvania Library Association Annual Conference in Gettysburg earlier this week. It was great to see friends and colleagues from across the state. Unfortunately it wasn’t 100% awesome since I was recovering from a bad cold, the hotel wifi was terrible (almost non-existent!), and we couldn’t find a ton of great places to eat in Gettysburg. Health, the interwebs, and good food are apparently staples of my happiness. I did really enjoy the tours this year – a wine tasting at Adams County Winery (picked up a bottle of Turning Point) and a nighttime walking tour of the haunted Farnsworth House Inn and Cemetery Hill! I was running around a lot so I didn’t get to attend a ton of sessions (I co-presented a session on Monday, facilitated two focus groups, and ran three unconference sessions – thanks to all the volunteers!).

Unconference session notes

  • I thought the unconference sessions went really well. Some of the same people came to all three, but there were also new people at each one which made the group breakout discussions pretty unique. We tried to get everyone to do evaluations so PaLA can decide if it’s worthwhile to do again next year (in my opinion, yes!).

Playing for Keeps: Lifelong Learning in the Ludic Library by Barbara Fister (Professor, Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library @ Gustavus Adolphus College)

  • The Citation Project – great project coming out of the composition and rhetoric fields
  • Student approach to research is to find some quotes that work and rearrange them
  • Being really good at following the rules stifles creativity and discovery – how does this impact how we teach information literacy?
  • There is value in doing things, not just learning about things

Using “The Filter Bubble” to Create a Teachable Moment by Allyson Valentine (Instructor @ York College; Adjunct Reference & Instruction Librarian @ Harrisburg Area Community College) and Laura Wukovitz (Instructor @ York College; Adjunct Reference & Instruction Librarian @ Harrisburg Area Community College)

  • Panopticlick
  • “confirmation bias”
  • Peek You
  • My reflections:
    • “The Filter Bubble” by Eli Pariser might be a really fun pick for a college One Book, One Campus program to get students to think about this kind of stuff on a broader scale.
    • Filter bubble instruction might work well in Millersville’s COMM100 classes where students do public speaking and have to present both sides of an argument/persuade their audience.
    • I posed this question during the Q&A portion of the session. Are library database vendors picking up on the idea of the filter bubble? I know some systems have built-in recommender services (if you liked this article, you might like these) but what about federated search systems? Do we know if EBSCO is privileging its content over other provider’s content that has been integrated into the results? If we don’t know how the systems determine relevancy, then we don’t really know, right?

The Space Between: Valuing and Utilizing Empty Spaces in Libraries by Alica White (Head Librarian @ Penn State University Mont Alto)

  • If you look at the aerial view of botanical gardens, they are a lot like the floor plans of library buildings (never noticed this before, but true)
  • Sala Borsa in Bologna, Italy
  • My reflections:
    • We need to think intentionally about the space between and around things in our libraries and be strategic about that space. It’s like whitespace when you’re designing a poster or a layout. The eye needs room to breath in order to take it all in.
    • We could brainstorm some way to revitalize “stacks” as content goes more and more electronic. I was thinking maybe you could take out some shelves from the middle (leave end caps and shelves at the top/bottom – even leave some books on the top ones, maybe?) and then put in a row of hanging plants. This would bring some green elements into the space but also create a nice vertical line that’s not completely solid or blocking too much visibility – a way to section off some space without closing it in completely?

Moving Towards the Future: Three Applications of Cutting-Edge Mobile Technologies in Libraries by Carolyn Sautter (Director of Special Collections and
College Archives @ Gettysburg College), Jessica Howard (Reference & Web Services Librarian @ Gettysburg College), Eric Phetteplace (Emerging Technologies Librarian @ Chesapeake College) and Erin Burns (Reference Librarian @ Penn State University Shenango)

  • Write your search terms like a robot
  • Aurasma augmented reality app seems cool
  • The Gettysburg artiFACTS project is a great example of one area the library could be considered an “expert” at outside the building. There’s lots of artwork located in different buildings on campus and the library could “curate” QR codes with additional information (where the piece came from, history of it, etc) for an interactive exhibit.
  • My reflections:
    • Aurasma (or something like it) would be the perfect thing to incorporate into a poster session at a conference. You could put right on the poster which app to use (or, an entire conference like ALA or ACRL could make the decision to use one app) and then if you put your poster up but weren’t standing right next to it all the time, visitors could scan and see you do a pre-recorded video poster talk.

Written by Erin Dorney

October 5, 2012 at 10:10 AM

C&RL News – Job of a Lifetime – Tina Hertel

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My fourth interview for the Job of a Lifetime (JOAL) column in College & Research Libraries News is now available online! I spoke with Tina Hertel, help desk/Web support librarian at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Our discussion about her involvement with Lehigh’s Technology, Research and Communication (TRAC) Writing Fellows program was particularly intriguing, and could be looked to as a model for other libraries. Check out the interview here:

Job of a Lifetime – Tina Hertel: Rocket scientist librarian, at your service!

A big thanks to Tina who is beyond phenomenal and has been both a personal and professional inspiration to me ever since I moved to Pennsylvania in 2008. She recently received a Certificate of Merit Award from the Pennsylvania Library Association.

Do you have the job of a lifetime? I’ll be starting the next interview shortly, so if you think it should be you, contact me. Enjoy & feel free to leave comments!

Related posts:

Written by Erin Dorney

November 12, 2010 at 3:01 PM

Two years in PA.

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Summer Scenester

I’ve been in Pennsylvania for two whole years! Crazy, isn’t it? It simultaneously feels like I have been here for over ten years and less than six months. Is that good or bad? Maybe both.

One of the biggest changes I have experienced in the past two years has been my relationship with my family. I left New York around the time my father was retiring and it will always be one of my biggest regrets that I had to leave just as I began to truly appreciate him. I think this factor has contributed in part to a slight breakdown in communication between my two younger brothers and myself. I’m six hours away and they live at home. It’s kind of not fair. I want to be a part of those dinner conversations.

I’m working on it. It’s a new goal for me to stay in touch instead of secluding myself here with work, school, and my oh-so-important PA life. And my mom, well, I just miss her every single day. I’m sure she’s enjoying being the only girl in a house full of boys… 😉

But, this is a Professional Blog (with capitals)! I should address something of substance, lest my readers abandon me. How about this inspirational conclusion:

I’ve been a professional librarian for two years now. I’ve been presented with a multitude of opportunities. I have been challenged in a plethora of ways. I have met people who I admire and aspire to be like as well as people who I wish I could turn and run from. What it all equals is the experience of a lifetime, the most rewarding period thus far. I can truly say that I love the career I have chosen and look forward to embracing the inevitable changes that will come.

Coming soon – Blog posts about ALA Annual, the PaLA awards, the ACRL Virtual Conference 2011 and more. Keep those dials tuned.

Written by Erin Dorney

July 7, 2010 at 9:57 AM