Posts Tagged ‘SUNYLA2007’
Well, I am home from the conference. What an exciting week! I met so many really nice and interesting people. I also made quite a few contacts whom I plan on keeping in touch with regarding different projects in the future. I really want to thanks SUNYLA for awarding me with the scholarship that allowed me to attend the conference. If not for them, I would not have been able to go to my first library conference, and would have missed out on meeting many of my peers.
Steering Your Career Through the Vast Waters of Librarianship: Career Management in An Age of Change and Uncertainty
Conference Booklet Description: “Whether new to the profession of a seasoned veteran, taking charge of your career is vital. Learn to sail on your own before circumstances and the waves of change take hold by attending this session which introduced participants to career and professional development resources available. Learn to leverage existing relationships, develop and maintain connections to other key professionals, and develop a plan of action for staying where you are or moving to where you want to go. At whatever stage you find yourself, this session will re-energize your passion for the profession and make the most of your skills and talents.”
My Thoughts: This was one of my favorite sessions because obviously, I will have to look for a professional position within the next year or so. And boy, am I nervous about it. Haha. This session really gave me a heads up as far as how important networking can be to a career in librarianship. It is also important to develop a personal plan of action, something I am good at doing short term but could work a little more on in regards to long term goals. Key elements that were discussed were curiosity, preparation, persistence and networking.
Something that came up during the discussion was publishing for tenure. Does anyone have thoughts on this?
Conference Booklet Description: “When planning for a new or renovated library, it is essential to design space that is flexible. Several types of learning and leisure spaces are needed to accommodate the new NetGen student. The NetGen student mixes work with socializing, likes working in groups but also seeks the quiet study space long associated with the library. This presentation focuses on how the library at Southampton could become a model for this new type of library, poised to evolve with technology and the way that students learn. A brief overview of current trends in the design of flexible library space will be followed by an open discussion.”
My Thoughts: This session was really interesting. The presenters were talking about the decisions they went through when planning their new undergraduate library. One cool thing that they did was research all kinds of libraries and information commons on the Internet and collect pictures of what they did and didn’t like. They then submitted their thoughts to the architects responsible for designing the space. This was an imperative step because architects typically don’t have the same things in mind when they design libraries as librarians do. The librarians are the ones who are going to be utilizing that space every day, and they have seen first had what works and what doesn’t. For instance, carrels were found to be underused, while comfy seating was very popular. The power point presentation that this group put together was superb, and as soon as they have it online I am going to provide a link here. They had pictures of some very modern furniture and set ups.
Another interesting thing was that they were still deciding on what to call the library. They had thought of not even using the word “library” and using something like Information Commons or some sort of mutual gathering and sharing space. The library is scheduled to open in Fall 2008, so there is still a lot of work to do. One thing the group said they would like to do is get together a group of students to serve as ambassadors regarding what would be most useful, which I think is a great idea. Why not ask the population you will be serving?
Well, I just got back from an amazing barbecue dinner at the point, which is the very end of campus where the fort is located. Diner was great but it’s still kind of hazy and overcast here. I feel like I haven’t seen the sun in days. After dinner a lot of people headed over to the dock to go on the sunset cruise, but I decided not to go. I’m not sure how I feel about big boats… So I’m just here blogging about my sessions and I’m going to go for a walk around campus. Ciao!
Conference Booklet Description: “Ever been interested in undertaking a digitization project? This presentation outlines the experiences of planning and implementing the Sailors’ Snug Harbor digitization project undertaken at The Stephen B. Luce Library. From conceptualization to fund raising to project management to delivering the end product, this session tracks the timeline of this modest-sized digitization project from beginning to end. Discussions will include aspects such as staffing, equipment and software, metadata, web design and content management. Also, some of the more challenging experiences and drawbacks will be covered.”
My Thoughts: This session was particularly interesting to me because on a lesser level, this is similar to the internship project I am working on at Wallace Library. The session walked us through an overview of all of the steps it takes to create a digital collection, some of which were new to me. There was more than one “Oh, I should remember that for my project!” moment.
One thing that was discussed was the flexible meaning of preservation. When librarians digitize something, they are not truly preserving it in the traditional sense of the word. This is because the formats for digital files are always changing, and it is unknown if in the future, PDF’s for example, will be readable. So instead of preserving the actual item in digital form, digitizing preserves the item by decreasing the amount of handling. The digitized version can be used by a number of people while the original item remains untouched, in the same state it was in before digitization.
Other interesting points were in regards to following standards for different documents for this collection. They used the Western States Digital Imaging Best Practices for scanning and Dublin Core 2.1.1 for metadata. It was also interesting learning about the three different images they have to create:
- The archival image: This is the image that would be the saved, preserved file, in TIFF format, the original image, usually around 70 mg
- The derivative: This is the copy everyone would use, usually scaled down in size to about .5 mg
- The thumbnail: This is the copy that would be used for searches, and is even smaller in size than the derivative.
Even though I’m not technically a member of SUNYLA, I was invited to their annual meeting to be introduced as the Dan Kissane Scholarship Winner. The lunch was really yummy and then I was introduced by Bill Drew. They made me stand up while they read my bio from the conference booklet and then everyone clapped. It was a weird feeling, but cool. I am so glad I got to attend this conference, I have really enjoyed it so far! Everyone is so nice, and they always want to know about me (what I’m studying, what I do at work, what I want to do in the future, etc.). I have also had a lot of people tell me I remind them of their daughters (?). Just an observation! Haha!
Conference Booklet Description: “In every class discussion there are students who have great ideas, but who don’t feel comfortable expressing them in class. How can you draw these students in? A class blog can be a forum to encourage discussion and exchange outside of regular class sessions, as well as an easily updated web presence for general class information. I’ve been surprised and excited to see what my students have posted and I plan to continue using this excellent tool to enable open communication with my students – find out how I (and they) did it, and bring your own ideas and questions to share!”
My Thoughts: This session discussed a blog created for a 7 week Information Literacy course. The librarian wanted to encourage more student interaction and therefore required students to post a total of three times throughout the course. This participation grade was counted into their final grade. The librarian liked the blog because it helped reticent students speak up on their own terms, created a more relaxed environment and because he could post the assignments and syllabus directly on the blog, the students had no excuse not to hand in their work. The quality and quantity of class participation increased, as well as the linking ability to the outside world.
There is a whole listing of the University of Albany blogs available here. Some of them look really interesting. One thing I liked about the blog this librarian created for his class was the fact that he inserted a Meebo widget so that students could IM him. He said that having this option available on the blog resulted in more than a few long conversations with his students.
One thing that I started thinking about as I was going through this session was the relaxed language students tend to use in a blog environment. I know sometimes I lapse in my own blog, using slang terms or words that I would never dream of including in a term paper. When we were going through the blog example for this librarian’s class, I could catch glimpses of the students actual writing, and saw phrases like “you’d be screwed” and “ppl” (people). One of the benefits many people are touting regarding class blogs is the increased use of writing in courses that aren’t necessarily writing intensive. However, if the writing is informal, does it still count? Are blogs going to help, or just encourage students to use slang and not proofread? Does anyone have any thoughts on this?