Monday, November 20, 2006

A lot has changed in six years

I was cleaning out old files at the reference desk. I found a four page training checklist for reference desk students. When I first started at Carlson, we had students working with us at the reference desk from 9 a.m. until 12 midnight!! It seems impossible to imagine now. Over time, we cut back more and more, until now we have no reference desk students at all. Frankly these days there is barely enough business to justify a staff person on the reference desk, much also scheduling a student. It was a huge job to supervise so many students. The scheduling was horrific and the training was non stop. Still, it was super fun to work with them. I miss that part.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Friday Flicks

Oh rats. I wish I had thought of this! My friend Nan showed movies on Friday afternoon at her
library, the Physical and Mathematical Sciences Library at Penn State. Apparently they have been very successful. Sounds like fun!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Is everything old new again?

I just saw a kid walk by with a Michael Jackson "Thriller" t-shirt. Is M.J. so old and weird that he's hip again??? I don't get it. Of course I don't get the rubber flip flops in the 40 degree rain either....

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Why are we so busy this fall?

It is just crazy in Carlson this semester. There are already students working when I come in at 8:30 a.m. When I left last night at six, every computer on the first floor was in use and every big table was filled with students working. What's going on? I'm guessing it's no single thing, but a combination of a whole bunch of things.

1. They accepted 200 more students than usual this year. Apparently there are lots of freshmen living in triples. I guess I would want to come to the library rather than studying in a crowded dorm room with two other people.

2. We renovated a second group study room that can be reserved for workshops. A whole group of students who normally would never have come to Carlson are "forced" to come here. Once they find us, do they come back to study?

3. Free coffee in Carlson seems to gone through the roof. In particular there is a rush on the coffee between 4 and 6 p.m.. There are workshops scheduled from 6:30 to 8: 30. Blick. I guess they just pump themselves up on caffeine to make it through.

4. Lots of students used to study in the Management Library in Rush Rhees. With that entire area under renovation, those students have been displaced to somewhere. Is it Carlson?

5. We didn't exactly get *new* computers on the third floor, but we moved them out of the scanky computer room right into the middle of a big study area. It seems very public to me, but the students are crazy for them. They're certainly in use every minute of every day.

6. And why are they (someone??) doing jig saw puzzles at such an incredible pace??? We put one out during the summer, just as an experiment. Now we're putting a new one out at least once a week, sometimes more often than that. I have no idea what's up with this but someone is keeping busy at night!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Day Two. Internet Librarian 2006

Let's just confess. There really is no "second" day to report very much of, because I went to the Monterey Aquarium in the afternoon! In the morning I did go to Judi's talk about institutional repositories at University of Rochester. I also heard Megan Fox talk about "Trends in Mobil Tools". Wow. She crammed a huge amount of information into 45 minutes. I had no idea how little I actually knew about mobile tools!!! Yikes. Very interesting stuff.

More library fun Scare Fair 2006

The Scare Fair was a huge success again this year. The original idea came from student complaints that the stacks were scary, which in fact, they are. We decided to capitalize on the scary issue and hold a "Scare Fair". One of the main activities is to introduce students to the stacks. We do a "stack stalk" where they have to find three books by call number. The reward is a ticket to go up in the tower on the top of Rush Rhees library. The tower of the library is the focal point of campus and it is only open one day a year, so this is a big deal. Every year I think the students won't do it. It's too dorky. But every year, they do it. They run through the stacks and laugh and shriek. They find their books, they get a piece of candy, they go up in the tower. It's all good.

We also had a fortune teller this year. Again, it sounds dorky, but students lined up to have their fortunes told. In addition to a fortune we gave them a "ticket to success". The ticket had the name of their librarian, picture, email, etc. The punch line, "we hope there is a librarian in your future". The idea for this came from our undergraduate research project where we have learned that students have no idea what a librarian can do for them or even that there is such a thing as a subject librarian.