Volume 32 Number 2
Dr. Terry Birdwhistell Named Dean of University of Kentucky Libraries Dr. Terry Birdwhistell (’78) in June was named Dean of University of Kentucky Libraries following a national search to select a successor to Carol Pitts Diedrichs, who returned to Ohio State University as Director of the OSU Libraries. The UK announcement reads: New Dean Named for UK Libraries LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 28, 2010) − Terry Birdwhistell has been selected as the next dean of the University of Kentucky Libraries pending approval by the UK Board of Trustees. The current associate dean for Special Collections and Digital Programs and co-director of the Wendell H. Ford Public Policy Research Center, Birdwhistell has been credited with building programs and centers, obtaining significant archival collections, as well as actively engaging in scholarly research, publications and media productions during his 35 years of service in the UK Libraries administration. Calling his appointment "a tremendous honor," Birdwhistell said he looks forward to working with Provost Kumble Subbaswamy and the UK Libraries’ faculty and staff to continue building the UK Libraries into one of the nation’s finest public research libraries. Birdwhistell, who has been serving as interim dean since January, holds a bachelor's degree in American studies from Georgetown College, master's degrees in history and library and information science from UK, and a doctorate in educational policy studies and evaluation from UK. A noted oral historian, Birdwhistell assumed the position of director of UK's Oral History Program in 1974 and is credited with building the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History into one of the nation's top programs during his 31 years of service guiding the program. In the 1980s, Birdwhistell began taking on several other leadership positions in UK Libraries including serving as University Archivist from 1985 to 2001. He has also served as executive secretary of the UK Libraries National Advi-
Fall 2010 sory Board since 2007. In 2001, Birdwhistell was named co-director of the Ford Center. A founding member of the Association of Centers for the Study of Congress, the center has brought to campus such prestigious national leaders as former Senator Joe Biden (now vice president of the United States), former Senator Walter Dee Huddleston, former Vice President Walter Mondale, and former Senator and Democratic nominee for the presidency George McGovern. Birdwhistell was named associate dean for Special Collections and Digital Programs (SCDP) in 2005. Under his leadership, he brought together a new organizational structure that included Preservation and Digital Programs, Archives, the Special Collections Library, the Nunn Center and the Ford Center. SCDP has a national reputation for its extensive holdings of rare books, manuscripts, photographs, and oral histories. SCDP also houses and provides administrative support for the Kentucky African-American Encyclopedia Project. Birdwhistell is a member of the UK College of Education Hall of Fame and in 2007 was named one of the "25 Movers and Shapers at UK during the Past Twenty-five Years" in UK Office of Research's ODYSSEY Magazine. … Birdwhistell also serves as co-general editor of the "Kentucky Remembered: An Oral History Series" published by the University Press of Kentucky. Outside UK, Birdwhistell serves on the Advisory Committee on the Records of Congress, Kentucky's State Archives and Records Commission and the executive board of the Kentucky Historical Society. He is a past president of the national Oral History Association, the Kentucky Council on Archives and the Kentucky-Tennessee American Studies Association. … "Dr. Birdwhistell brings a rich combination of experiences to his new post as the dean of UK Libraries," said Provost Kumble Subbaswamy. "His extensive knowledge of current library and information access issues, and his deep knowledge of the Commonwealth will help advance the work being done at UK Libraries to better serve the university and its communities."
Alumni and Awards Banquet 2010 The School's Alumni and Awards Banquet was held Friday, April 23, at the Hilton Downtown Hotel. Anne Bradley received the LISSO Leadership Award, and Liz Siler received the Melody Trosper Award. New members of Beta Phi Mu were initiated. Wayne Onkst ('79) received the 2010 Outstanding Alumna/us Award and delivered the Karen Cobb Memorial Lecture. The following were invited to membership in Beta Phi Mu: August 2009 graduates Pam Duncan, Vaughan Fielder, Sarah Flood, and Carla Redden; December 2009 graduates Melissa Boulton, Gregory Decker, Janelle Hawes, Amanda Hazenfield, Kacy Lujndstrom, Patricia Payne, and Gera Roberts; and May 2010 graduates Anne Bradley, Gary Chaffee, Emily Frank, Jennifer Green, Mary Hall, Emily Kean, Katherine Kimball, Melissa Riehm, Robert Shapiro, Liz Siler, Anna Tonnemacher, and Jeremy Williams.
Faculty Activities and Recognitions Professor Donald Case has been elected to the UK Graduate Council for 2010-2013. Director Jeff Huber is serving as a member of the Medical Library Association's Janet Doe Lectureship Jury. Professor Lisa O’Connor has assumed Editorship of the Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship. In addition, she received the College of Communications and Information Studies 2010 Excellence in Teaching Award. In August Libraries Unlimited published Professor Lois Chan’s latest book, FAST: Faceted Application of Subject Terminology, which she wrote with Edward T. O’Neill, who is a Consulting Research Scientist at the Online Computer Library Center. According to the publisher’s information about the book: Two members of the original design team introduce a metadata scheme almost anyone can learn! While The Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) is perhaps the best known bibliographic control system in existence, it is cumbersome and not always user friendly. Faceted Application of Subject Terminology (or FAST) is designed to rework LCSH's authority rules, so that they are easier to use, understand, and apply. The result is a schema designed to handle a large volume of materials with less effort and cost. Professor Chan has embarked on UK’s phased retirement option and will teach only spring semesters. Professor Joe Miller continues to serve on the University Senate and this year has been elected to the College of Communications and Information Studies Faculty Council. Professor Sujin Kim has been promoted to associate professor with tenure. Effective September 1 Professor Kim has a joint appointment: the School (30%) and the Division of Fall 2010
Biomedical Informatics, Department of Biostatistics, College of Public Health (70%). Professor Stephanie Reynolds has a chapter entitled "If You Build It, Will They Come? A Comparison of Different Social Networking Utilities" in the volume Teens and Social Networking Now: What Librarians Need to Know published by Greenwood and scheduled for release in early 2011.
Wade Bishop Joins School Faculty Bradley "Wade" Bishop joined the School's faculty this fall as an assistant professor to teach Management in Library & Information Science and Information Representation and Access in the spring. Wade was born and raised in Bradenton, Florida and attended the University of Florida where he earned a BS in Marketing. He has also received a MA in Library and Information Science from the University of South Florida. This past spring he completed his PhD at Florida State University's College of Communication and Information in Information Studies. Wade has professional exWade Bishop perience as a teacher, academic librarian, graduate research associate, teaching assistant, and instructor. Recently at FSU, he was awarded the 2010 School of Library and Information Studies Outstanding Doctoral Student Award and first place at the College's 2009 Doctoral Poster Competition for his dissertation, Chat reference and location-based questions: A multimethod evaluation of a statewide chat reference consortium, which also received the Eugene Garfield Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship award. He has published in Library and Information Science Research, Library Quarterly, and Government Information Quarterly and hopes to continue utilizing Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in Library and Information Science. For more information, visit Wade's website: http://www.uky.edu/~bwbi222
Marcia Rapchak Joins College Faculty Marcia Rapchak, who will complete the School’s MSLS program in December, has been hired as a lecturer in the Department of Communication. She told the newsletter: I was hired (along with several other individuals) to help pilot the new General Education courses Composition and Communication I and II. These courses help meet the learning outcomes approved by the University Senate. The courses are interdisciplinary in nature and are the results of the combined efforts of the Division of Writing, Rhetoric, and Digital Media and the Department of Communication. Though I previously taught in the Writing Program at UK, I was hired through the Department of Communication because I am a student in the School of Library and Information Science. One of the learning Page 2
enrolled in a summer study abroad course in England in outcomes of the Comp and Comm course is information order to gain better perspective on European history from literacy, which is very exciting for both the University a European perspective. In addition to taking a course at and SLIS. I joke that I am the token librarian, but I am the University of Westminster, I revery pleased that information literacy ceived a grant from Transylvania to is a part of the new General Educaextend my trip and spend a week retion requirements and that all students searching in the reading rooms of the will be exposed to information literImperial War Museum and the National acy instruction before they graduate Archives at Kew. The experience was from UK. an invaluable component of my underAlong with instructing this course, graduate career; it was both humbling I will be helping to create a new unand invigorating to realize that the govdergraduate course in the School of ernment documents and the personal Library and Information Science. papers I utilized had been studied by This will help establish SLIS in unonly a handful of people, and that I was dergraduate education and, hopefully, uniquely privileged to have inside acwill expand into more courses. In the cess to someone else’s story. future, we want students to have the My research provided me with insight opportunity to receive a minor through into the physical, emotional, and relaSLIS. Director Jeff Huber presents the tional ramifications of rationing and I'm very lucky to have been at the Melody Trosper Award to Liz Siler government restrictions during the Secright place at the right time and to ond World War in England, and I further developed this have the support of so many instructors in SLIS. The fuproject upon my return to Transylvania. Having completed ture of the University of Kentucky and the School of Liall of the required components of my history degree, I obbrary and Information Science is bright, and I am happy to tained approval to complete an independent study Honors be a part of that future. Project under the direction and guidance of an academic Marcia entered the School’s program after having comadvisor. Throughout the semester, I supplemented my overpleted an MA in English at Ohio State. She earned a BA in seas primary source documents with secondary materials English at UK in 2005. and various resources available through online databases and collections. The product of my research, “Defending Entering Student Melinda Groff Continues Children and County: British Women as Citizens and SLIS Success in Fellowship Competition Mothers during the Second World War,” was recognized as the outstanding undergraduate research paper on a world Among the numerous fellowships and scholarships that the history topic and awarded the statewide Ray Betts Award UK Graduate School offers, the most generous is the Multiby the Kentucky Association of Teachers of History. Year Fellowship, whose recipient receives a non-service award of $18,000 for the school year, along with a tuition During the past dozen years, the following SLIS students scholarship and inclusion in the University’s student illness have received Multi-Year Fellowships: and injury plan. A graduate program may nominate a maxiStudent Year Awarded mum of two entering students for Multi-Year Fellowships, Melinda Groff 2010-2011 and only those who meet criteria established by the Graduate Anna Stewart 2009-2010* School may be nominated. The competition is keen, and in it Jennifer Green 2008-2009 LIS students compete with nominees who have been admitKatherine McCardwell 2007-2008 ted to doctoral programs. For 2010-2011 32 entering stuJennifer Link 2004-2005 dents were nominated for Multi-Year Fellowships, and four Elizabeth Jones 2003-2004** were awarded. Jaelithe Lindblom 2003-2004** SLIS entering student Melinda Groff was awarded a MulJames Dankiewicz 2001-2002 ti-Year Fellowship for 2010-2011. Mindy graduated from Robert Webb 1998-1999 Transylvania University, where she had a prestigious Wil*For a student in a master’s program a Multi-Year Fellowship liam T Young Scholarship, with a BA in history and a minor is renewable for a second year. Because, at the time the in English. The school conferred the degree summa cum Graduate School selected Anna Stewart, the Graduate School laude, and she graduated with honors in history. She wrote was unable to commit to a second year, her award was not an honors thesis in history, “Defending Children and County: referred to as a Multi-Year Fellowship. However, the award British Women as Citizens and Mothers during the Second to her was identical in every way to a Multi-Year Fellowship, World War.” In her Multi-Year Fellowship essay Mindy except that it was for only one year. wrote about the research she conducted for the honors thesis: **The Graduate School permits a program to nominate only As I prepared for my final year of college, I felt it was two individuals. In 2003-2004 both of our nominees received important to extend my research outside the boundaries of the award. Transylvania University and Lexington. In August 2008 I Fall 2010
Preparation Continues for Accreditation Review
top floor of the King Library building and were to relocate to the Little Fine Arts Library with the completion of the final phase of renovation. In addition, phase 3 included other facilities for the School As we reported in the spring 2010 newsletter, the School is Phase 3 has been revised substantially, and in the Propreparing for ALA periodic comprehensive accreditation gram Presentation we write: “Plans for this area have review. Accreditation is the responsibility of the Committee evolved over time in response to changing University needs on Accreditation, which, according to the ALA Web site, is and strategic opportunities within our College. Current plans “a standing committee of the American Library Association dedicate approximately 350 sq ft for responsible for the implementation of the McConnell Center, 100 sq ft for a the accreditation of library and inforserver room, and an area of shared mation studies programs. The COA cubicle space as well as offices for the develops and formulates standards of Dean and other college personnel and education for library and information a conference room. The remaining studies and policies and procedures space of the phase 3 renovation will for ALA accreditation.” The current include two University smart classstandards were adopted by the ALA rooms of 870 sq ft each, that the ColCouncil on January 15, 2008. lege will have priority access to, and The School must produce a Program the College Knowledge Center. The Presentation in which the six standards College Knowledge Center includes a are addressed. Director Jeff Huber sent Risk Sciences Center, a Center for copies of the draft Program PresentaInstructional Communication, a Distion to members of the School’s Advisemination and Implementation Scisory Council the first of August, for ence Lab, faculty offices, and the ColAnne Bradley (left) accepts the their review. Advisory Council memlege Graduate Program offices as well LISSO Leadership Award from bers’ comments led to further as cubicle space for Research AssisLiz Siler as Jeff Huber looks on revisions to the draft document. tants, Graduate Assistants, and TeachThe comprehensive review is following a schedule that ing Assistants. The last stage of the renovations will transirequires the School to submit the draft Program Presentation the former SLIS student commons area to College purtion to the Office for Accreditation and the External Review poses, including the Dean’s suite, a conference room, and Panel chair at the end of October. They will review the other staff offices.” The two classrooms were completed in draft and may ask for clarification and possibly additional September, while work continues on the rest of phase 3. information. If revisions are required, they will be made in time to deliver the final Program Presentation mid-January. Internship: An Important Option Members of the ERP are to be on campus February 28 – Available in the Master’s Program March 1. The Committee on Accreditation announces the results of comprehensive reviews twice yearly. The comprehensive Although some ALA-accredited programs require an internreview schedule the School is on calls for COA action to be ship, the School does not. However, we recognize the imannounced at the 2011 Annual Conference. portance of an internship to the student who has no library work experience, and through our professional field experience course, LIS 675, we provide the means for a student Work Underway on Final Renovation Phase not only to have an internship but also to earn three hours of credit toward either the MSLS or MA degree. In addition to When the architect developed the plans to renovate the third School-initiated LIS 675 placements, it is not unusual for a floor of the Little Fine Arts Library building, she provided library director or department head to get in touch with the for three phases. Phase 1 was two classrooms. The School School to ask that information be distributed about an inwould schedule them first each semester, and the Registrar ternship. Some are paid; others are not. Some are done in would assign classes to them at times the School did not use conjunction with LIS 675; others are not. We are aware of them. Phase 1 also included a room with more than twotwo internships in recent years that, in each case, led to the dozen work stations, which the School would schedule exlibrary’s creating a professional position for the person, due clusively. Finally, in the first phase, what was the staff to her performance in the internship. lounge when the third floor held library staff was renovated Although most LIS 675 internships are in one of the very nicely as a student lounge along with a kitchen. Phase population centers where there are significant numbers of 1 was completed in January 2003. the School’s students – Lexington, Louisville, northern Phase 2 was the School’s administrative and faculty ofKentucky/Cincinnati – we will consider a placement anyfices and two conference rooms, and the School moved where, as long as there is a suitable institution with a person from the fifth floor of the King Library building to the third qualified and willing to serve as the student’s placement floor of Little Fine Arts Library building in October 2007. supervisor. Several summers ago a student had a summer The computer lab and McConnell Center remained on the Fall 2010
LIS 675 placement at the Alaska State Museum in Juneau. Another summer a student had an LIS 675 placement at the Biltmore Curatorial Library at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. That same summer a student had an internship at the Briggs Lawrence County Public Library, Ironton, Ohio. Two years ago this fall a student had an internship at Berea College’s Hutchins Library, in Special Collections and Archives. In recent years two students have had LIS 675 placements at New Albany Floyd County Public Library, Indiana. Internships come in considerable variety. Student Victoria Triplett spent summer 2010 in Washington, D.C., serving as an archival intern in the office of Kentucky Senator Jim Bunning. There she spent 12 weeks arranging and processing the Senator’s congressional papers and memorabilia collection. Archive interns also took the opportunity to conduct several oral history interview sessions with the Senator about his life and careers. It is especially gratifying when someone we turn to about a possible placement is not just willing but enthusiastic. Mark Adler, Director of the Paris-Bourbon County Public Library, is an example. Mark recently commented for the newsletter: Offering internships to Library Science students creates opportunities for success for both libraries and the students who participate. Libraries are able to temporarily increase staff size at small or no cost and get the benefit of learning more about and potentially implementing new theory that is being taught in Library School. Students get the chance to learn and fine-tune their skills in a real-time environment. Our experience with student interns has been completely positive. With our cataloging internship in 2008, I was able to get a cataloger on staff who was highly qualified. She freed me up to work on higher level projects and in the end provided the data I needed to ask for and receive a newly created cataloger position. In fact, the quality of her work was so good that we hired her into the new position. Julie Maruskin, Director of the Clark County Public Library, just to the east of Lexington, has had a number of our students as interns and is another enthusiastic supporter of internships. Julie told the newsletter: The staff at the Clark County Public Library have enjoyed our informal but very important partnership with the Master's program at UK, and are grateful to you and your staff for your kindness in spreading the word among your students when we've had professional and paraprofessional openings. As you know, many of our University of Kentucky student interns have accepted positions here in both part-time and full-time regular positions, and we've enjoyed all of the students who have worked here through the year. Our partnership has provided additional experience in training young librarians for the managers on staff, and we hope that our interns have gained some practical knowledge and insight into the workings of public libraries. We appreciate your assistance in placing students with us and your unflagging support for public libraries in general. Fall 2010
Needless to say, students are also enthusiastic about internships. This past summer Katherine Horner was awarded a Boehl Summer Internship at the Filson Historical Society in Louisville. According to information on the Filson web site, a Boehl Summer Internship is open only to men and women who currently are enrolled in or recently completed “a graduate program in history or a related field.” The information also explains that “Interns work with appropriate curatorial staff and faculty advisors in areas of collections management and research.” When asked to describe her experience this past summer, Katherine wrote: The Boehl Internship was a wonderful learning experience for me as an MLIS student. At the Filson Historical Society I was able to work with amazing staff, who were extremely knowledgeable in the areas of history, museum studies and Library and Information Science, and all were willing to share their knowledge with me. Under their supervision I was able to handle rare documents I would have never seen otherwise, and no one else had seen in years as they had been hidden away in the stacks, uncataloged. The bulk of my time at the Filson was spent cataloging their sheet music collection. Thanks to the instruction I received in LIS 655 under Paula Hickner I was completely prepared to create several hundred (maybe 800? I can't recall) MARC records which I uploaded to the Filson's online catalog and WorldCat. I became their "expert" in cataloging sheet music as no one else had been able to take the time to focus on this collection. Before leaving the internship I was asked to create a guide to cataloging sheet music in order to aid their staff in the future. It was a rewarding experience to put the skills I had learned in one of my courses to work in the real world as I would not have been able to experience cataloging sheet music without this internship. I was also able to hear lectures from visiting researchers to learn how such an immense collection of historic art, artifacts and documents were actually being put to use. I was also given a tutorial in using the museum software Past Perfect, which is used by several other museums and is a great skill I would not have learned in any of my courses at UK. I would recommend any LIS students or recent alumni to apply for this internship if they are interested in archives or museum work, and I would highly recommend the internship for any who enjoyed LIS 655 and would like to gain practical experience cataloging (as I know the Filson still has lots of items in their collection that have yet to be cataloged). Oh, and it is a paid internship which is extremely rare in this field and in this geographic area. Arne Almquist, Associate Provost for Library Services at Northern Kentucky University and member of the School’s Advisory Council, recently affirmed his commitment to internships: We continue to hire UK (and Kent, etc.,) grad students to serve as Library Graduate Assistants here. In our LGA program, we use the assistantship as an opportunity to mentor the students and they are immersed in the academic librarianship environment, attending faculty meetings (as observPage 5
ers), etc., and they obtain valuable experience that they can use on a resume. We also pay our LGAs a good wage ($15/hour) – so, it is a pretty good opportunity for a student to gain pre-professional experience and financial support, as well as to determine if they really want to go into academic librarianship. Rebecca Montano-Smith (’05), Assistant Director at Lexington Public Library’s Village Branch and member of the School’s Advisory Council, brings to her role as intern supervisor her own experience as an intern. When we asked Rebecca to comment on the importance of internships, she told the newsletter: The state of library education is fiercely debated in the professional literature. But the best thing nearly every student at UK SLIS can do to further their education and gain real work experience is not used nearly enough; LIS 675 Professional Field Experience. Getting academic credit to explore the real job market is a pretty good deal, especially in a competitive field and a slumping economy. I completed a semester of professional field experience with BWI’s collection development department after hearing the manager speak in one of my other classes. I contacted the manager after the class and told her that her department sounded interesting and asked if she would let me work for her. She agreed and I embarked upon a unique and valuable learning experience. The BWI collection development team was made up of some of the nicest, most professional librarians I have ever had the pleasure to meet. They were masters of their trade. I learned a lot about the business end of collection development and more importantly that I did not want to work in an office, staring at a computer full time. Far better to have learned this while in school rather than accepting a job and learning the hard way! I also had the privilege of going through the UK SLIS program on a Lyman T. Johnson fellowship which included 15 hours of work per week as an intern. Lexington Public Library agreed to sponsor my internship. I rotated through several departments in two years; circulation, reference, administration, outreach and in the last and best rotation, helping set up a brand new branch, the Village Branch library where I work to this day. My experiences interning in various departments within the Lexington Public Library dovetailed neatly with my SLIS coursework. I daresay that if I hadn’t been interning simultaneously my coursework would not have made nearly as big an impact on me. I had no prior circulation experience before my internship and the terminology used in classes was foreign and opaque. But I soon was able to apply the lessons learned in class to my work at the circulation desk and the reference desk and the world of information science began to take shape for me. In my time here as a librarian at Village Branch, we have hosted 3 interns who have all gone on to professional positions. Hosting an intern is a great way to see your professional world with new eyes. I consider it a professional ob-
ligation to offer an internship to a motivated SLIS student. All of the hand wringing and belly aching that professional librarians do about what they didn’t learn in library school could be silenced if more libraries offered more internship opportunities. I look forward to the day that libraries of all types and library schools everywhere realize that it is in everyone’s best interest to offer job training to students before graduation. Carrie Cooper, Dean of Libraries at Eastern Kentucky University and member of the School’s Advisory Council, several years ago introduced an internship for students enrolled in the LIS master’s-degree program. “We average about two interns a year,” she told the newsletter, “but this year we have four.” We asked Dean Cooper what she looks for when she interviews an applicant, and she replied: “The current four students were selected because they interviewed the best, and were excited to work in public services.” We asked her how the program came about, and she told the newsletter: We rely on SLIS students every year. For about four years now, we've selected two each fall to work the main library's reference desk. They typically stay 9-12 months. We also give them instruction experience and special projects, as needed. This year, we've selected four SLIS students because we're opening the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity. The additional two will be working in this unique space offering research assistance to EKU students within a writing and communications center space. To date, each student has told us how valuable the experience at EKU has been to their job search. We recently hired one of them in a support staff role, and another was hired several years ago as an electronic resources librarian. I deliberately froze a permanent staff position and used the money to support SLIS students. These students bring new ideas and a great energy to the desk. We take pride in supporting the University of Kentucky's Library Science program and students. In this job market, experience gives the new graduate a distinct advantage. Eryn Roles (’10), who was an EKU reference intern 20092010 and is now Research and Instruction Services librarian at Marshall University, commented on her experiences as an intern at Eastern Kentucky University: Working at EKU was one of the best parts about being in UK's Library Science program. If you plan to be an academic librarian, there really isn't a better job during library school. The librarians at EKU are amazing to work with and I really created some long lasting friendships and work relationships. What was so great about the job was not only did I learn about academic/reference librarianship, but I also learned so much about circulation, which I think a lot of academic librarians miss out on.
Where Do We Go From Here? Wayne Onkst Wayne Onkst (’79) received the School’s 2010 Outstanding Alumna/us Award. It was presented to him at the April Alumni and Awards Banquet, at which he delivered the Cobb Memorial Lecture. We thank Wayne for providing the text of his thoughtful and enjoyable talk, which we are pleased to make available to newsletters readers.
allowed the users to explore a wide variety of information HANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS AWARD. I appreciate very contained within those walls. We were able to request matemuch JC’s nomination and the consideration of those rials to be delivered through the mail via a primitive method who chose me for this honor. It is certainly very gratifying of exchanging books between libraries that expanded access to be recognized by my school. Of course I share this award to information. with many. I have been privileged to work with so many I remember very clearly the day when our first computer outstanding colleagues who deserve the credit. I want to say was delivered to the library. Nothing would ever be the thanks to my colleagues who have meant so much to me same in the library. Little did I realize the changes that techthrough the years and a special thanks to my family who is nology would bring. Today, when here to share this night with me. library users enter the library, they Thanks to Dennis for his friendship truly have access to a world of inand support and to Jeff and Dean formation. Services we provide O’Hair for their leadership of the today could only have been school. When I was notified that I dreamed of in 1979. And now liwould receive this award, I couldn’t brary users have access far outside help but spend some time in reflecthe walls of the library in their tion. The year I spent in Library homes, offices, or anywhere with School here was certainly a special internet access. At the same time, time for me. I very fondly recall the library has become a place classes with Larry Allen, Michael where people can meet, learn, exHarris, Wayne Wiegand, Rosemary change ideas, communicate with Dumont, Lois Chan, Gail Kennedy, others around the world, access and the absolutely unforgettable information, apply for government Anne McConnell. It is in her honor benefits and jobs, take college that I tell you that children’s service classes, or attend programs and is a foundation of public library sermeetings. The list goes on and on. vice and I have yet to see a great Director Jeff Huber presents the 2010 Regardless of the type of library – public library without great chilOutstanding Alumna/us Award to Wayne Onkst public, academic, school or special dren’s services. If it was the goal library – we have seen libraries of the school to not only educate, become community centers that are thriving beehives of but also to inspire, then the school was a marvelous success activity. No longer is the library a collection – it has been in my case. These instructors gave me tools that have been transformed into a place. I fondly recall spending many important throughout my career. And I appreciate their inhours climbing through the stacks in the Margaret I King struction which has certainly been a foundation of anything Library and finding a quiet corner to ready or study. You I’ve been able to accomplish. need only go to the Young library commons on a weeknight to see the transformation that has occurred in our libraries in Thirty years of change recent years. I feel very fortunate to have been a student of the library The result of these changes has been impressive. Of school here and to receive the quality of education that I course I work most frequently with public libraries and am obtained. I also feel very fortunate to have been a librarian most conversant in their growth. Last year, Kentucky’s pubduring the past 30 years. I always try to be careful not to lic libraries served more people in more ways that ever beoverstate – so it is not lightly that I state the opinion that fore. The number of people using public libraries in Kenmore change has come to libraries in the last 30 years than tucky has increased by more than 50% since 2000. During during any other time. this fiscal year, Kentucky’s public libraries will welcome 20 If you look at the library when I left library school and million visitors for the first time. And sometime in the next compare it to today’s library, there is little resemblance – 2 months, our public libraries will check out the 30 milother than the continuing presence of books. Otherwise, it is lionth item of the fiscal year. The Institute for Museum and a different place. In 1979 when I graduated from this school, Library Services compares statistics of libraries among the users of the library entered a very wonderful place where states and Kentucky’s public libraries have improved drathe collection of books, record albums, and framed prints Fall 2010
matically in the past 10 years when compared with public libraries from other states. And there are certainly similar success stories from other types of libraries across Kentucky.
teristics of leadership come naturally, they can also be learned. I challenge the library school to make sure your students understand the importance of vision, planning, and creating positive energy in the library that facilitates change for meeting users’ needs. It is really amazing how much good will exists toward the library. Next week, KDLA is beginning our first Library Leadership Institute. We are beginning with the premise that when you become a library director, you have the opportunity to become a community leader. Never before has it been so important that library professionals provide strong leadership for their libraries and in their communities.
Transforming libraries and the future of libraries I feel fortunate to have watched and been a part of the transformation and growth of Kentucky’s libraries. Though I occasionally have a person contact me with the complaint that their local library “just isn’t the same any more,” I feel that the changes have been positive and appropriate – certainly reflecting the changing needs of our users. So where do we go from here? The importance of local advocacy The second area that is critical for As impressive as our progress has our success in the coming years is been in the past 30 years, however, advocacy on the local level. We have we still have a long way to go in worked very hard to make sure our meeting the needs of those we are legislators – both state and federal – charged with serving. Just this year, a know about our issues and needs. We public library was established in have had some success. In Kentucky, Carter County and we still have a however, in almost all types of librarcounty in Kentucky without public ies – funding is determined locally. It library service. Other counties have is becoming more and more evident service that is far below where it that our local officials do not know needs to be to meet the community’s or do not respect the value of our needs. Library service at Kentucky’s libraries and what they mean to our academic institutions varies greatly communities. We don’t have to go far from the very strong to the barely Wayne Onkst delivers the 2010 Cobb Lecture to learn this lesson. Even in this adequate. And many school libraries community, the birthplace of library service west of the Alhave not kept pace with the changing nature of education – legheny Mountains some 200 years ago – the Mayor is atnot to mention budget reductions that are threatening many tempting an unprecedented raid on library funding to balschool libraries. Even for the strongest of libraries, if we are ance the city’s budget. And unfortunately this is not at all to continue to meet ever changing needs of our users, then uncommon. In counties across the Commonwealth in the the change we have seen is only a beginning. past year there has been opposition to funding increases My position as state librarian for the past 3 ½ years has though the demands on libraries have never been greater. afforded me the opportunity to go to every county in KenAs schools face budget issues, school libraries and litucky visiting libraries, discussing issues with librarians, brarians are disappearing at an alarming rate – with very meeting citizens and leaders, and hearing from library proserious implications for the future. Academic libraries at fessionals across the country. many institutions are facing serious reductions that Tonight, I am going to suggest to you – graduating stuthreaten service. dents, library school faculty and staff, librarians, and library It is imperative that we find a way to make sure the supporters – that there are 3 particular areas where we must decision makers at the local level understand the imporfocus in order to make certain that our libraries not only tance of libraries. I received a copy of an e-mail from a survive, but thrive in the coming years. library user that he had received from his legislator during this recent legislative session who mentioned that the Strong leadership is essential request for support of the library was a “want” rather First, we have to provide strong leadership in our librarthan a “need.” We must make sure that our legislators ies. Whether it is a government, corporation, a church, a know that providing library service is critical as a comschool, a non-profit organization, or a library, I think it can ponent of education for people of all ages and that it is an be argued that quality leadership is the most critical factor economic development issue – enabling people to obtain in its success. There is no substitute for the person leading the organization being able to see what the library could jobs and services while encouraging companies to locate be, and having the ability to chart a course that enables the in communities for the quality of life that a library demvision to become reality. It has been strong leaders who onstrates. have transformed our libraries in the last 30 years, but we Obtaining support from our Mayors, county judge exwill need even more strong leaders to make sure every ecutives, fiscal courts and county commissions, princilibrary adequately serves its users and becomes the place pals, superintendents, site based decision making councils, where people turn – regardless of whether it is a public, deans, provosts, presidents, and company officials may well academic, school, or special library. While some characbe the most important factor in whether a library successFall 2010
fully obtains needed resources – or in some cases whether the library exists. Strategies need to be developed for every library to advocate on the level where the funding will be determined. The people make the difference Finally, at least as important as leadership and local advocacy, is getting the right people in the profession. I’m sure you have all read Good to Great by Jim Collins. He talks about getting the right people on the bus. If we are going to be successful, we need to have the right people working in our libraries. The day when we hired people to work in the library because they liked books or liked to read is over. While these characteristics are still admirable, they no longer qualify a person to work in the modern library where books and reading are a foundation, but far from the only thing we do. We need staff members who like people, who can deal with people and enjoy serving others. People who can problem solve. People who can use technology to deliver service. We
also need desperately to be more inclusive in our hiring. While many of our staffs are small – we need to be as inclusive as possible. I think our libraries benefit when our staff represents a wide range of experiences, ideals, and values – just like the communities we serve. What a wonderful time to be a librarian. Never have we needed more strong leaders, advocates, and service minded people in the profession. I congratulate the graduates here tonight on their choice of a field of endeavor. You will be on the ground floor where you can influence your organization as to the type and quality of service that will be provided in the future. 30 years ago, I could not have imagined the opportunities that have been afforded me as a librarian. I hope you will be ready to seize those opportunities that come your way to serve your library and its users. And down the road you may very well be here where I am standing tonight. Thanks to the library school for preparing me for this adventure and thank you for this award. It means a great deal to me.
Wayne and Debbie Onkst with sons Noah and David and David’s wife Ashley
Ken Gibson’s Career: Back to Photography Ken Gibson (’94) is Director of the Duggan Library at Hanover College in Indiana. We recently asked Ken via email about the realities of collection development at a liberal arts college library. He replied thoughtfully, and of course we had a follow-up e-mail, to which he also replied. After several more e-mails back and forth, the subject moved from collection development to his interesting career, which has involved different kinds of libraries in different parts of the country. We thank Ken for permitting us to include the following in the newsletter. Ken earned a BFA with concentration in photography at Northern Kentucky University in 1985. He was nearly a straight-A student there, and NKU conferred the degree magna cum laude. When he applied to the School’s master‘s-degree program, in 1992, Ken was living in Norwood, a suburb of Cincinnati, and on his application he indicated that, if admitted, he would take most of his courses at NKU. In the essay that accompanied his application to the School, Ken referred to “a continuing desire to work in the photographic field” since graduating from NKU, which prompted him to consider an MFA. However, I realized that what I really wanted was to work with photographs, yet in a service oriented business. Photographic archives seemed the obvious choice. I called several of the photographic archives around the country to clarify whether a MLS degree or a MA in photo history was the preferred choice and was told overwhelmingly that the MLS when combined with my BFA in photography was a more practical approach to photographic archives. As many of us have learned, however, interests change, or perhaps it’s more the case that opportunities present themselves. When Ken completed the School’s program in May 1994, he was working as a library technician at the Cincinnati VA Hospital. Although his interest in photography and photographic archives remained high, he realized jobs in that niche were scarce, and so he sent applications all over the country in seeking a professional librarian position. As Ken recalled, “I wasn’t too picky. I sent my resume to public libraries, academic institutions, and special libraries, including keeping an eye open for a position within the VA system.” Eventually, Ken landed a job in the spring of 1995 with the University of Arkansas Medical Sciences Library in Little Rock, Arkansas, as the Coordinator of Database Access and Outreach Services. He says it was a supportive environment for a newly minted librarian. However, his time there was brief. “Frankly, my wife wasn’t happy living in Arkansas so I began looking for another job after only a year. When considering a job, I learned that input from the entire family is important.” Ken was able to parlay his medical library experience into a newly created position as Assistant Director/Head of Education Services at the SUNY Stony Brook Health SciFall 2010
ences Center Library on Long Island. During his threeyear tenure at Stony Brook, he developed an education program that, at the time of his departure, ranked near the top of national health sciences library statistics. One of the many lessons Ken recounts from that transition was the reward for being portable. “With that move I was able to fast-forward my career both in terms of professional position and financially. I had a colleague there who was upset that I came in making more money, but she wasn’t willing to move to further her career options.” In 1999 Ken interviewed and was hired as a reference and instructional librarian at Hanover College. While on the surface this may appear, at best, a lateral move, he explained, there were other factors in play, including a desire to return to the Midwest where immediate family resided, the opportunity to provide a free college education for his two children through Hanover’s tuition remission benefit, and the willingness to take a lesser position short term with an eye toward a future opportunity. Ken said that he really wanted to work in a liberal arts setting and that he knew he wanted to be a director some day. Hanover provided the climate for both. On my first day at Hanover I had a meeting with the then-director who asked me what my long term goal was, and I replied, ‘to be the director’. Rather than being threatened, she appreciated the honesty and said she would give certain preparatory tasks to me that she might not have otherwise. After two years she left, which was much sooner than I had anticipated, but I realized this chance may only come around once, so I threw my hat in the ring, went through the national search process, and was eventually selected for the position I currently hold. Ken says returning to school to obtain his MLS degree was one of the most important decisions he made and the career choice has certainly afforded him many benefits. Among these have been the opportunities to publish professionally, to present at a conference at Yale University, to attend a week-long Leadership Institute at Harvard University, and to Chair the Executive Committee of a statewide consortium. Though he has never worked in photographic archives, “to paraphrase legendary commentator Paul Harvey, here’s the rest of his story.” In 2002 the then-Dean at Hanover approached Ken to teach the Spring term photography course as an adjunct instructor. Ken taught the course for three years in addition to his continuing library director responsibilities. In 2005 he applied for an Administrative Leave and secured Faculty Development grants in support of his teaching duties. This enabled him to travel to Europe for one month developing a new body of work using digital photography. The result was an exhibit, Par Avion, and a renewed commitment to his own photographic arts. This work, along with other images, can be seen on his website, www.KenGibsonImagery.com . In Ken’s case, photography and librarianship intersected after all, just not in the way he initially anticipated. Page 10
Library and Information Science Education in Kuwait Husain Al-Ansari During the academic year 2009-2010, Kuwait University Professor Husain Al-Ansari was a visiting scholar at the School of Library and Information Science. Dr Al-Ansari, who is a faculty member in the Department of Library & Information Science, is Vice Dean for Academic Affairs & Graduate Studies. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Library Science and Historical Documents from Cairo University in Egypt, and a Master of Library & Information Science from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. In 1992, he received his Ph.D. in Library and Information Studies from Florida State University. We asked Dr Al-Ansari to write a piece for the newsletter about library and information science education in Kuwait, and we thank him for doing so.
s a visiting scholar who recently joined the SLIS at UK, I am privileged to be a part of this Department. On my part, I wish to give readers a brief overview of the development of library and information science education in Kuwait. Kuwait is a small country in the Middle East with an area of 6,880 square miles. Kuwait was a British protectorate from 1899 until it achieved its independence in 1961. The population is 3.3 million, of which about 70% are expatriates. The Kuwaiti economy depends mainly on exporting crude oil, petrochemical industries, and overseas investments. Different types of libraries have been developed in Kuwait; namely school, public, academic and special libraries and information centers. The total number of library and information centers in Kuwait is approximately 721 libraries broken down as follows: Academic libraries: 32 School libraries: 620 Special libraries: 40 Public libraries: 29 Formal library and information science education in Kuwait began in 1977 when a two-year library program was established at the Teachers’ Institute at the Public Authority for Applied Education and Training (PAAET). The program was designed to prepare high school graduates to be Assistant Librarians. Before the foundation of this program, Kuwaiti students were sent abroad, especially to Egypt, for library training. In 1986, the two-year program was upgraded to a fouryear program awarding a Bachelor degree. The new Department of Library and information Science is housed at the College of Basic Education, which replaced the Teachers’ Institute. The Department offers an undergraduate bachelors degree in library and information science. Graduation from the program requires completion of 130 credit hours. Students are required to take 60 credit hours in library and information science, 30 general education courses such as Arabic language and literature, English language, and humanities. The remaining 40 hours are professional courses in social sciences and education. The language of instruction is Arabic. Students normally complete their BA degree in four years, and most of them work in school libraries.
The teaching staff consists of 20 full-time faculty members specializing in library and information science. There are approximately five hundred students currently studying in the program. MLIS Program Planning for the MLIS program was initiated in the late 1980s as a result of pressing needs for information professionals in Kuwait. The College of Graduate Studies invited a team of three deans from leading library schools in the United States to prepare a planning document on establishing a master’s degree program at Kuwait University based on ALA accreditation standards. They were Dean Robert Hayes from the University of California at Los Angeles, Dean Mohammed Aman from the University of WisconsinMilwaukee and Dean Robert Wedgeworth from Columbia University in New York. I had the honor of coordinating their visit to Kuwait during the ALA conference in New Orleans in June, 1988. The team submitted their report in January, 1989. The establishment of the program was delayed due to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1991. In 1996, the master’s program was approved and located under the umbrella of the College of Graduate Studies. The MLIS program was developed so as to overcome the shortage of qualified staff in libraries, archives and information centers. The degree requirement for the master’s program is a total of 36 credits. Seven core courses (21 credits) are required, representing the basic competencies for professional practice of library and information science and a research methodology course. Completion of four specialized electives (12 credits), selected to develop professional competency in an area of specialization, is also required, in addition to fieldwork training. Students are required to take a comprehensive exam after completion of the core courses. Students are also encouraged to take a maximum of two courses in other departments with coordination of their academic advisors. English is the language of instruction and research. All graduate courses are offered between 4:00 – 9:00 pm. In the fall of 2001, the MLIS program was transferred to the College of Social Sciences and was awarded the title “Department of library and Information Science.” At the same time, the department began offering courses in information literacy for all undergraduate students in the College of Social Sciences and biology students in the College of Page 11
Science. It also started offering an undergraduate minor in information studies in 2004. The minor in Information Studies is in line with the overall trend in the university's interdisciplinary cooperation and interaction with other disciplines and departments. The Department of Library and Information Science is managed by the chairperson who reports to the Dean of the College of Social Sciences. Ten statutory committees in the Department are formed every year through election or nomination. Academic decision making is democratic and committee-driven. The academic affairs of the MLIS are managed by a Program Committee formed by the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies. The Committee is headed by the Program Director. Membership in the Committee is from amongst the senior faculty members of the Department. Faculty The Department has twelve full-time faculty members all of whom hold PhDs in library and information science from leading schools in the United States and the United Kingdom. It is also worth noting that among the twelve faculty members is one full professor, five associate professors and six assistant professors. Faculty members are very active in research and publication, public lectures and seminars, participation in local, regional and international conferences and professional organizations, and provide consultancy for libraries and information centers in Kuwait. At present, three faculty members are teaching graduate courses exclusively, and four others are assigned graduate courses as the need may arise. The normal teaching load is nine credit hours per semester. All the faculty members who are engaged in the teaching of graduate courses are normally assigned the duties of advising, practicum supervision, and supervision and conduct of comprehensive examination of graduate students. Students The total number of students enrolled in the masters program is 45. Eighty percent of them are part-time students, and the majority is female. The yearly intake of students is in the range of 25-27 students. The main requirements for regular admission to the master’s degree program is having a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from an accredited university, an overall GPA of 2.67 points, and a minimum specialization average of 3.00 points on a scale of 4.00 or the equivalent. New curriculum Based on the findings of the market needs survey, consultations with international experts, as well as discussions among faculty members, a new curriculum was proposed for
implementation in the academic year 2010/11. The newly revised program aims to produce quality information and knowledge professionals capable of playing a leading role in the emerging knowledge-based and technology-driven environment. Also, a new degree entitled “Master in Information Management” has been proposed. The proposed curriculum consists of a total 36 credits, with two tracks of specialization: the first is library and information management, and the second track is knowledge management with a common core for both tracks. Master in Information Management Common Core Courses 1. Information and Society 2. Searching and Retrieval 3. Research Methods Common Elective Courses (2-3 courses required) 1. Internet Technologies & Applications 2. Business Information 3. E-Commerce 4. Data Mining and indexing 5. Information Systems Analysis & Design 6. Information Architecture 7. Content Management Library and Information Management Specialization Required Courses 1. Organization of Recorded Knowledge 2. Information Resources and Services 3. Management of Information Organizations 4. Database Management 5. Thesis (6 credit hours) or Research Project or Practical project (3 credit hours) Elective Courses (1-2 courses allowed) 1. Resource course 2. Management course 3. Library Automated Systems & Services 4. Digitization Systems and Applications Knowledge Management Specialization Required Courses 1. Foundation of Knowledge Management 2. Management of Human and Intellectual Capital 3. Knowledge Management Technologies 4. A 6-credit hour thesis or professional project Elective Courses (2-3 courses allowed) 1. Knowledge Sharing and Organizational Behavior 2. Learning Organization 3. Knowledge Organization and Codification 4. KM Implementation and Measurement
Laura Amos on 2012 Newbery Committee
Head of Reference at the U.S. Department of Justice; and Library Director at Congressional Quarterly. The Hellenic Ideals Program of the Bluegrass is a local In April it was announced that Laura Amos (‘07) will serve organization that began in 1980 to promote Ancient on the 2012 John Newbery Award Committee. The ALA Hellenic principles such as the importance of the press release writes that the Newbery Award is one of two individual, the concept of freedom, and the value of awards recognized as “the oldest and most prestigious seeking the truth. Each year, the awards in children’s literature, Program sponsors an annual honoring the most outstanding lecture related to Greek ideals, writing and illustration, respecGreek history, or how these tively, in works published in the ideals are manifest in the world United States during the precedtoday. The organization also ing year.” honors an individual from the The Newport News Daily Press Bluegrass area who exemplifies took opportunity to interview the Greek ideals of citizenship. Laura on her exciting achieveThis year's honoree, Deputy ment: Chief Justice Mary Noble of the To help select the winning litKentucky Supreme Court, chose erature, Laura and other comAlito to deliver the annual mittee members will spend lecture. next year reading books pub“I thought it would be Martha-Ann Alito and Director Jeff Huber lished for children ages birth to interesting, if we were talking 14. How many books they will about judicial people, to hear from the family, instead of read depends on how many eligible books are published. the judge,” Noble said. “My husband often tells me that In the past, committee members have read 400 to 500 the perspective of the family members of a judge is often nominations. overlooked. Then I learned that Martha-Ann Alito is from "Being on the Newbery committee is an incredible Kentucky, and that she got her undergraduate and honor," says Laura. In 2009, a graduate school colleague graduate degrees at UK,” said Noble. “I thought it would nominated her, and a selection committee for the Associabe very interesting to hear from a fellow Kentuckian tion for Library Services to Children put her name on the about her life, and about how she moved into the fishbowl association's ballot. of Washington, D.C.” "When I was growing up reading Newbery winners such as 'A Wrinkle in Time' and 'Dear Mr. Henshaw,' I Stacey Greenwell Receives 2010 couldn't have imagined that I would one day be picking a Dow Jones Leadership Award Newbery winner myself."
Martha-Ann B. Alito Visits School While on Campus to Deliver Lecture Martha-Ann B. Alito (’77) visited the School in early October, while on the UK campus to deliver the annual lecture of the Hellenic Ideals Program of the Bluegrass. According to the UK press release, Martha-Ann’s October 2 talk, “One Letter Home,” would “focus on Alito's life and the changes her family experienced after moving to Washington, D.C. following Justice Samuel Alito's appointment” to the U.S. Supreme Court. The press release also provided this information: Martha-Ann Bomgardner Alito was born in Ft. Knox, Kentucky. Her father's Air Force career took her to Azores, Texas, France, Maine and New Jersey during her childhood. She completed a B.A. in comparative literature in the UK College of Arts and Sciences, and an M.A. in library science in the School of Library and Information Science. She worked as a reference librarian at Neptune Public Library in Neptune, New Jersey; a librarian at the United States Attorney's Office in Newark, New Jersey; Fall 2010
Stacey Greenwell (’98) was honored at this year’s Special Libraries Association annual conference as the recipient of the 2010 Dow Jones Leadership Award, presented annually “to an SLA member or members in good standing who exemplify leadership as a special librarian through examples of personal and professional competencies. The recipient of the Dow Jones Leadership Award receives a cash award in the amount of US$ 2000.” The press release read: Stacey Greenwell is Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Research at the University of Kentucky Libraries. This position is administratively responsible for all public services based in the William T. Young Library (reference, information literacy, information commons, circulation, interlibrary loan, audio-visual services) as well as nine branch locations. Formerly Stacey served as the Head of the Information Commons (the Hub), a vibrant, collaborative student space which combines a technology help desk and computer lab with traditional library reference services. Stacey served on the planning group for the Hub and managed its operation from its opening in March 2007 to August 2010. She served as the library liaison [to the] English Department which included selecting library Page 13
materials focused on English language and literature as well as providing library instruction for the English Department. From 2001-2006, Stacey served as Desktop Support Librarian and then as Head of Desktop Support, providing technology management and technical consultation to library employees. Stacey is active on a number of campus committees and working groups and is a past chair of the University Libraries Faculty Council. Active in SLA since 2001, Stacey is a member of the Kentucky Chapter and of the Academic, Information Technology, and Leadership and Management Divisions. She was named a Fellow of SLA in 2009. Stacey has served the Information Technology Division in a number of roles, including Chair in 2007 and Program Planner in 2005. Leading the petition drive to launch the Academic Division in 2008, she served as the division's first chair. Stacey was a member of the Centennial Commission and served on the 2010 Annual Conference Planning Committee. Stacey has served the Kentucky Chapter in a number of roles and was the recipient of the chapter's Professional Award in 2006 and the chapter's Outstanding Member Award in 2008. Stacey is a 2009 Frye Leadership Institute Fellow and a 2009 recipient of the Lyrasis NextGen Librarian Award for Leadership. She is frequently invited to speak at conferences and writes about information commons, library, and technology issues on The Uncommon Commons blog. … In fall 2009, she began the doctoral program in Instructional Systems Design from the University of Kentucky's College of Education.
Tammy Kirk on Military Librarianship Alumni are a resource to the School in a variety of ways, one of which is as a source of information about jobs. Tammy Kirk (’04) regularly posts job notices to the School listserv, and we appreciate her doing so, not only because she adds to the number of job posts but also because she adds to the variety. It seems that most job posts are for academic or public library positions, but the jobs Tammy posts are for federal library positions, especially in military libraries, which is her career path. We asked Tammy if we could submit questions to her about her interest in military libraries and why she believes alumni and students should consider the career path that she is on, and we thank her for agreeing. Our questions and Tammy’s replies follow: What positions have you held since completing the School’s program? Since graduating from UK SLIS in 2004, I have worked in three libraries – each military, but for differing services. I first worked for an Air Force technical library in Dayton, Ohio. Next I worked for an Army language library in Monterey, CA. Currently, I work for the Naval War College in Newport, RI. This type of variety is not unusual for military librarians although the time-frame may be a bit unusual. Although I worked for three different libraries, I kept my Fall 2010
same insurance plan, my same retirement plan, and my same level of vacation and sick leave benefits because I really worked for one employer – the US government. How did you become interested in military librarianship? My introduction to military librarianship came as a patron while stationed in Sinop, Turkey, while serving in the US Navy. The base had a very small library staffed by a military librarian. While military librarians serve a military community’s information needs, that community includes civilians as well as military personnel. Base librarians, for example, serve the needs of military families as well as active duty members. The librarian on the base where I was stationed supported the recreational and educational needs of her patrons and was a very enthusiastic member of our community. You served on active duty in the US Navy. Since you are no longer on active duty, it’s obvious military librarianship is open to civilians. However, is prior military service a requirement to be a military librarian? Military librarians are civilians who staff libraries that serve military patrons, not librarians who are in the military. Prior military experience is not a requirement for the profession. Just as with most federal positions, though, applicants with military experience are given a certain amount of preference when applying. My experience in the library in Turkey as well as knowing that I would receive veterans’ preference and that I could apply my military service toward my civil service were all factors that contributed to my decision to become a military librarian. While these factors helped me, a lack of military experience does not hinder an applicant for a military librarianship position, although military patrons are often happily surprised when they learn that they are working with a veteran. Who are your patrons, or clients, as a military librarian? Librarians who work at a military academic institution assist civilian faculty, staff, and students as well as their military counter-parts. Many military organizations are staffed with Department of Defense civilians as well as military personnel. What do you see as the major advantages or attractions to a career in military librarianship? One of the greatest benefits to military librarianship is the variety of opportunities available within the community. The military has libraries that correspond to most, if not all, types of civilian libraries. The most obvious parallels are the military academic libraries and the base or post libraries (the terms differ according to service) that correspond to public libraries. The military also has medical libraries, technical libraries, and law libraries. A military librarian may serve the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marines as well as any combination of those services and the civilians who work with them. In addition to the variety of types of libraries where a librarian may work, military librarianship offers librarians an opportunity to work in a variety of locations. From a position in the NATO library in Brussels or the base library Page 14
in Cherry Point, NC the possibilities are almost endless. In fact, this brings me to one of the few potential drawbacks of military librarianship: while military librarians are generally not required to move, unlike the military members they serve, librarians may need to move for career advancement. The rare exception is that some librarians who serve overseas may be required to return to a stateside position after a certain period of time. When considering a position overseas be sure to ask if the position has such a requirement. And, of course, I have to ask what you see as the major disadvantages, or drawbacks, to such a career? First, while not always the case, generally, only U.S. citizens may become U.S. military librarians. You will find few exceptions to this requirement, mostly in contract libraries. Secondly, most positions require some level of security clearance. Qualifying for a security clearance is not necessarily a hardship but may require time. Military libraries also often meet a certain degree of inflexibility. While most libraries must contend with the policies, procedures, and budget constraints of the parent institution or community, military libraries must deal with the Department of Defense and governmental regulations that can severely restrict the ability of the library to respond to situations in a timely manner. Another potential drawback is that the level of network security is generally much more restrictive in military institutions. While other libraries may need to get permission from their parent institution to try out virtual reference software, or switch to a different OPAC, military libraries must also get permission at the service level. Military librarians, however, are adept at making the most of what technology is available to them and generally try to stay knowledgeable of shifts in technology because, eventually, we will get to adopt new technology into our workplaces. What steps should a person take to learn more about military librarianship as a career? Those considering military librarianships should monitor USAJobs closely for open positions. I suggest setting up email notifications. Many positions are open for only a short period of time and may not be advertised elsewhere. Also I recommend joining the Military Libraries Division of the Special Libraries Association (MLD, though the abbreviation on the SLA site may be DMIL). The SLA-DMIL listserv is a great source of information about the military libraries community and for job notifications. The FEDLIB listserv is also a great source of information as military libraries are also, of course, federal libraries. When available, military library internships are an excellent way to enter the profession. If at all possible I suggest attending the annual SLA conference and networking with the military librarians. The DMIL chapter of SLA is very active at the conference and members are very enthusiastic about assisting potential new members of the community. Attending the SLA 2004 conference in Nashville and participating on the listserv played instrumental roles in getting me started on my career. I also Fall 2010
turn to my colleagues in SLA when I need advice. Members are enthusiastic about their chosen profession and eager to help each other and those looking to join their ranks. Any final comments? Military librarianship, a facet of federal librarianship, is a rewarding career path for information professionals. This career path gives librarians an opportunity to work in different types of libraries and in different locations, even overseas, while, potentially, working for one employer – the US government. I have been very happy with my career as a military librarian. I particularly enjoy knowing that as I improve and grow as a librarian I will able to move to positions that give me even more opportunities to apply my knowledge and learn knew skills all while working under the umbrella of one employer – Uncle Sam.
Alumni Activities In August of this year Shawn Livingston (’93) was promoted to Director of Information Services, William T Young Library, University of Kentucky Libraries. We have learned, too, that Shawn received the 2010 Carol J. Parris Mentoring Award, which “recognizes outstanding service to the future of the library profession by mentoring one or more Kentucky librarians or library workers.” Valerie Estes Perry (’94) is Chair of the Food, Agriculture, and Nutrition Division of the Special Libraries Association. Constance Ard (’95) is Chair of the Legal Division, Special Libraries Association. In September, Constance was a speaker in the School’s informal Lunch-N-Learn series. She is self-employed as Answer Maven: Answer Maven offers on-demand research and training. I have 14 years of professional experience. I respond to client needs in a timely manner and deliver accurate results in the requested format on your deadline. Stacey Greenwell provided information about promotions and recognitions among several graduates, and she wrote: “It has been the year for awards for James Manasco (’96). At the Special Libraries Association (SLA) Annual Conference, James was named a Fellow of the association, a distinction granted to few SLA members. He was also the recipient of the Special Librarian of the Year Award from the Kentucky Library Association Special Libraries Section." In August 2010 Stacey Greenwell (’98) was promoted to Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Research in UK Libraries. She is past Chair of the SLA Academic Division, and at the 2010 Special Libraries Association Annual Conference received the Dow Jones Leadership Award. We thank Rob Kelley (’98) for passing along the good news he is now Dr Kelley: “I completed my Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Louisville's Speed School of Engineering in June 2010. I am currently Page 15
working as a postdoctoral research associate for the MINDS lab at UofL and teaching adjunct for Sullivan University's Louisville and Online Campuses.” Congratulations Rob. Beth Kraemer (’98) has been promoted to Director of User Experience for Library Technologies at the UK Libraries. Melissa Gardner (’00) is Kenton Elementary School Library Media Specialist, in northern Kentucky. In June we received the good news that David Gregory (’02) had been appointed Director of Technical Services, Camden-Carroll Library, Morehead State University, KY. From the press release we learned: He will oversee acquisitions and collection development, and coordinating cataloging, serials, interlibrary loan, and systems activities. Gregory comes to MSU with experience as a librarian at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. In addition … he has also served as an adjunct professor and instructor of church music. He received his Master of Science degree in library science from the University of Kentucky and has a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in voice and musicology from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Leoma Dunn (’03) is the 2010 President of the Special Libraries Association Kentucky Chapter, as well as this year’s President of the Kentucky Library Association. Tonya Head (’05) has been promoted to Manager of the Adult Services Department at Lexington Public Library. She explained: “It is the new name for the now combined Reference Department and the 2nd and 4th floor Fiction and Nonfiction Departments” at the Central Library. Abby Heath Thorne (’05) is the 2010 President-Elect, Special Libraries Association Kentucky Chapter. Craig Amos (’07) is Public Services Manager, Thomas Nelson Community College, Hampton, VA. Laura Amos ('07) is Family & Youth Services Librarian, Newport News Public Library System VA. She will serve on the 2012 Newbery Award Committee. Ruthie Maslin (’07) has been appointed Director of the Madison County Public Library, KY. We have learned that Krista King ('09) is now the Teen Librarian for Boone County Public Library, in northern Kentucky, based at the Main Branch in Burlington. In early November we received a nice e-mail from Margaret Penn (’09), who wrote: “I left LPL [Lexington Public Library] in August to take a position with Gwinnett County
Public Library [GA]. I am a public services librarian at one of the branches. PSLs are one of four members of the branch supervisory team. We are responsible for supervising the branch and staff in the absence of managers, staff training, and in my case, collection maintenance. It has been a good move and very interesting. It is very different from Lexington in size (15 branches) and focus.”
Among Recent Graduates Julie Beatty is an English teacher at Highland Hills Middle School, Georgetown, IN. Deloris Foxworth is Visiting Instructor – Speech Communication, Kentucky State University. Jennifer Green is Cataloging/Electronic Resources Librarian at Bethel University, McKenzie, TN. Joseph Isaac is Technical Service Librarian, Kentucky State Law Library – Administrative Office of the Courts. Katherine Kimball is on the staff at Louisville Free Public Library. Jessica King in on the library staff in the Lexington office of the law firm Stites & Harbison. Sophie Maier is Community Outreach Coordinator, Louisville Free Public Library. Erin Pifer is Library Media Specialist, Tichenor Middle School, Erlanger, KY. Paul Roberts is Director of Patron Services, Boyce Library, Southern Seminary, Louisville. In September we received an especially gratifying e-mail from Eryn Roles: “I accepted the position of Research and Instruction Services librarian at Marshall University in Huntington, WV. I am the English department library liaison and am hopefully going to be working closely with assessment soon.” Cynthia Schmid-Perry is Director, Ohio County Public Library, Rising Sun, IN. Caitlin Snyder has joined the staff at Paris Bourbon County Library as Children’s Librarian. Leslie Tate is Youth Services Programmer, Paul Sawyier Public Library, Frankfort, KY. Christina Tofan is Web Specialist, Eastern Kentucky University Libraries, Richmond. Anna Tonnemacher is a Program Coordinator at the University of Louisville. The newsletter is published, electronically, spring and fall. Please send information for it to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on Oct 7, 2011