Book Wishlist

2012 has been a busy year for me. Workings 1.5 jobs and attending school part-time online is challenging, but something that I know that I can handle. The downside to this– is I am looking at some very interesting books and wishing I could squeeze in some pleasure reading. It’s true that I own more clothes than books. Think of me as the Jessica Parker from Sex in the City…only I have lots of books in my closets. If I had a permanent dwelling place…it would probably look something like the photo below…

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Wonderful Bookland

I have a recent obsession with the New York Times weekly Book Review. Here are 5 books that I wish I had time to read.

The Loom By Sheila Gillus

Twelve Gates to the City: A Novel By Daniel Black

They Tell Me of a Home: A Novel By Daniel Black

How to Be Black By Baratunde Thurston

Black Cool: One Thousand Streams of Blackness By Rebecca Walker

Library Day in the Life- Groovy Day 2

Hello Everyone!!!!

I’m back for another dose of Library Day in the Life. I won’t bore you with the details of my full-time job as a Library Assistant. I shared here in my previous post. As a Librarian-in-Training, I decided to get an additional part-time job just to keep my reference skills and critical thinking skills fresh while completing my Master’s degree online. I learn better through experiential learning, which my undergraduate college trained me well.

5:40PM-10:00PM

My part-time Library Graduate Intern position at a local private university is very exciting and challenging because I am at the ‘frontline’ circulation desk. I supervise two Student Assistants every shift. My main responsibilities include:

  • Reference Interview/Providing Instructions on navigating databases
  • Capturing Statistics (i.e. Entrance Totals, Money transactions, Ref Stats)
  • Answering Directional questions (i.e. restroom location, print cards)
  • Answering  telephone reference questions
  • Reporting Security Issues
  • Resolving Printing Issues
  • Updating Student barcodes

In this position, I am learning to manage my time better and working with a diverse student body. Today was extremely busy because I answered several call-in reference questions and updated student barcodes (i.e. allows remote access for students to search the database offsite). A couple of interesting questions that I received on the reference desk include:

Question 1: How do I get several articles about ADHD and misdiagnosis? I have to write a reaction paper on this issue.

Answer 1: Here is our Subject Guides section for Psychology & Counseling, which links to the available databases. I showed the student how to navigate the ProQuest Psychology journal database. Subject terms: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Diagnostic errors [Search yields: 61 articles]

Question 2: I need several peer review articles about assessment and education. Does the university have the Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice journal?

Answer 2: Here is the link to search by journal title in the university catalog. If you are unable to locate this title, we can look in the Consortium catalog to see which school has this title. (I showed the student how to navigate the journal title search feature and showed the student how to request the article via Interlibrary loan)

Future Projects– There are three other Library Graduate Interns who are working to develop an instruction course. In the course they will show students the Subject Guides and how to request articles/books from the consortium. I hope to work on creating a short instructional video to demonstrate how to add more money to student accounts for printing.

Library Day in the Life Project

Hello Everybody!!!!

This week is the Eighth Annual Library Day in the Life Project and I am happy to participate this year. Why am I excited about this project? Because everyone knows that Librarians/Information Professionals are awesome. *Smiles*

I work full-time at a non-profit foundation in Washington, D.C. as a Library Assistant. My responsibilities include opening and closing the Research Center. I handle all Interlibrary Loan requests, reconciling invoice charges for borrowing materials, and cataloging. Here’s my recap of Monday’s business:

ImageAgenda:

6:30AM- Catching the train from Baltimore to D.C. (rocking John Legend on the iPod)

7:30AM-8:30AM- Processing Interlibrary Loan (ILL) requests and follow-up with lenders (via telephone/email)

8:40AM-9:00AM- Sort mail and update Serial holdings via Voyager. Grabs a cup of tea.

9:00AM- noon – original cataloging. Printing labels and calling co-worker to get clarification on how to make OPAC match OCLC record holdings. For two months I have been training on how to catalog original reports and copy-catalog books given to us as gifts. This very rewarding, but I can live without all the Webinar Trainings.

Noon- 1PM- LUNCH TIME. Nothing to mention.

1PM-2:30PM- processing ILL requests and following up on missed borrowing materials. (i.e. emails and telephone calls).

2:30PM-2:45PM- Breaking to stretch my legs and visit a neighbor down the hall.

2:45PM- 4:30PM- de-coding [resolving]  ‘secret’ Voyager technical issue. Our Systems Librarian wrote a policy manual before they took another job. Well…the steps in the book AREN’T self-explanatory. I was on the phone with the Library Manager trying to figure it out. A headache plus tracking down the latest versions of a freeshare FTP program to help with downloading overdue notices from Voyager.

4:45PM-5:00PM- Closing Procedures include: shutting down computer, recycling paper, magazines, and straightening up furniture.

5:00PM- Hit the subway home. Oh the joys of public transportation in D.C. *SUPERSIZED serving of sarcasm*.

Day in the Life…See Ya Tomorrow

2012: The Year Ahead

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2012 New Year’s Day Meal

I am looking a head in 2012 as a year of continued progress and practicing optimism. I am by nature a  ‘Glass-Half-Empty’ person, but understand the value of practicing optimism in my daily life as a tool to get through life challenges. So before I get on my soapbox to start spouting my life philosophy, I have decided to focus on a small list of measurable goals for 2012.

  1. Have fun while in Library School– hahahaha (it’s possible, I’m determined!)
  2. Blog More- Focus more on library related issues and the occasional snow mishaps [lol]
  3. Incorporate book reviews in my blog— I already have a list of books 🙂
  4. Attend one genealogy/library conference- Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (already on list)
  5. Complete 3 Knit Projects- Hat, Mittens, blanket (already have the yarn)

 

Interesting Blogs

Deep South Dish– awesome recipes for the Southern transplant.

Joint Conference of Librarians of Color– Sept 19-23 in Kansas City, Missouri

Ravelry– Online Knit & Crochet Community

 

2011: A Year in Review

Well I am winding down the year watching one of my favorite movies, Something to Talk About with Miss Sassy pants Julia Roberts. As with every passing year, the preferred tradition is to create a short inventory list of goals or things that we hoped to accomplished. I am not big on making New Years’ resolutions because most of the time it seems that by February I am totally miserable.

2011 has been an eventful year and I would like to refer back to my post A New Year and Its Meaning(s) where I have made goals of what I hoped to accomplished. I am a firm believer that goals help keep people motivated and also serve as a good indicator on measuring long-term accomplishments.

My three goals: 1) Develop a writing voice; 2) Attend a Conference; 3) Read three books. In goal one of developing a writing voice, I have discovered that in order to become a better writer it requires consistent practice. So it looks like I will have to practice more with regular blog posts. My participation with the 23 Things for Professional Development helped me develop my writing voice. I hope to continue this in 2012 session.

I attended my first genealogy conference in 2011. Sadly, I did not write about my experience which I regret. I attended the Washington DC Family History Center conference in Kennsington, MD on October 2011. There were so many wonderful sessions. African American Genealogy, Introduction to Family Search Indexing, and Land Grants/Deeds were a couple that I attended.

Harold’s List of Genealogy Events in MD/DC/VA/DE area- Oct 2011- Feb 2012

I read several books in 2011 and I was very excited to discover New York Times Book Review. Several outstanding books that I have had the pleasure to read:

The New Graduate Experience: Post MLS Residency Programs and Early Career Librarianship

Malcom X: A Life of Reinvention By Manning Marble

Silver Sparrow By Tayari Jones

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close By Jonathan Safran Foer

In Summary, 2011 was an exciting and busy year for me. I went from having a part-time job to gaining a full-time job. I have developed new skills in cataloging and Interlibrary Loan. I am expecting 2012 to be filled with continued success and challenging projects.

My first solo copy-cataloged book

Hello Everyone,

I have a GREAT reason for being electronically absent. I am developing my skills for cataloging and my library manager has given me the green light to start cataloging. I want to take a break to at least share a funny snapshot that I created to show my work. Hey…I may be a cataloger/metadata librarian in the making. Image

Future updates coming soon.

‘Jobs’ Humor

Hello fellow readers. I am very busy this week, but hope to devote some time over the brief holiday to catch-up on my 23 Things challenge. I thought I’d share some ‘Jobs’ Humor to end the week.

Thing 6: 411 to Online Networks

LinkedIn

Kudos to Fellow CPD23 Blogger, Lauren for sharing her experience with online networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, LISNPN, and Twitter. Lauren points out LinkedIn profile percentage widget– a 75% completeness until you add

a profile summary, specialities, and recommendations from references. I rely heavily on LinkedIn platform to stay informed to the LISNews, colleagues, and information professionals. I consider myself shy until feeling comfortable in social environments. LinkedIn is a helpful online network because I can ask a question related to hiring trends, LIS technology, and research opportunities. LinkedIn is valuable because you can contribute to groups by giving feedback to members. Many of the groups are open, but some are open by member invitation only. [In my opinion, member only groups are more active].

My profile is complete, although I haven’t reached beyond the 75% completion mark because I have not received recommendation(s), added specialities or summaries. Several groups that I find helpful:

  • Job Skills for Future Library Careers (member only)
  • Librarianship Job Search and Careers (member only)
  • LIS Career Options (member only)
  • American Library Association

Facebook

Hmm, I have a love-hate relationship with Facebook. I find myself mildly irritated with its bi-monthly privacy release documentation. And yes…I do read them. Although, I still use my Facebook sparingly– to post photos of my latest food creation or photos of day trips. Facebook connects me with a handful of colleagues that I have met at professional conferences. I will endorse Facebook as a method of reaching out to professional colleagues to ask questions about projects or congratulate them on their latest finished project. I do not add people on my Facebook account that I do not know in real life.

LISNPN, Librarians as Teachers & CILIP Communities

I am not familiar with these networks, although I have navigated to these platforms just to be aware of their existence. My philosophy about social media tools– if it isn’t broke, don’t run out to buy new toys. Information Overload and creating a balance in work-life paradigm are my reasons for limiting my activities on social networks. I believe that social media is helpful and valuable in the right context, however I also believe that people need to also think the long-term effects on social media. Remember MySpace? I rest my case and leave you with this photo to laugh about.

Information Overload?

Thing 5: Reflective Practice

Peter F. Drucker
Words of encouragement help me to stay focused on my work as an information professional. A good story or a small sketch are also great talking points to use for starting the reflective practice process. The topic for CPD23 Thing 5 this week is to discuss REFLECTIVE PRACTICE.
 
Thing 5 Reflective Practice is very important not just for the CPD23 Thing Challenge, but also for life long career development. Using the resource guide for this week, I will identify an event/project and apply the RECALL it, EVALUATE it, and APPLY it methodology.
 
Event– For 2011, I wanted to improve my skills as a information professional by completing several goals which I wrote in an earlier post here. 1) write a book review; 2) establish an online presence  are the two goals I want to showcase in my reflective practice.
 
Evaluation: I found that the hardest part in the reflective practice process is finding time to devote to it. Write a book review- this was both a wonderful and scary opportunity. I responded to a book review request from the editor and wrote the book review on Hack Library School. This was a helpful book for aspiring MLS graduates who interested/want to go into academic librarianship. The learning point that surprised me the most while reading this book is that I am learning to appreciate assessment. My definition of finding value in assessment is that I am learning to seek out material related to libraries/technology that gives me a more quantitative edge. I am all about the ‘warm and fuzzies’, but when administrators are pressured to cut programs– assessment, statistics, Excel spreedsheets are things that excite me because then I am able to search for values in programs. As library/information professionals, advocacy should be on our agendas to ensure that funding is available for our communities.
 
Application: Secondly, my participation in the CPD23 Thing is my way of reviving my online/blog presence. It is so exciting to read other participants who are at different levels in their careers. Many of my professional mentorships/peer groups are virtual and I am very appreciative of all the support that I have received. I have had the opportunity to meet several people whom I first met via online. Skype, Facebook, Blogs, and Linkedin are excellent platforms of communication. The benefits of a MLS degree as well as taking on the CPD23 challenge– will yield a positive outcome in my opinion. I may not use Twitter or Pullnote daily, but having an awareness of how it works is important. I use Twitter for genealogy purposes to stay informed about research tools and methodology. I will continue to use reflective practice exercise as a continue in my profession. This a very helpful process to chart my professional progress as well as serve as a guide for any future research projects.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Spotlight on Diversity: Spectrum Scholarship Soars

 Hooray for the recent annoucement at the 2011 Annual American Library Association (ALA) Conference in New Orleans- The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have contributed $300,000 to the Spectrum Scholarship. The Spectrum Scholarship is a wonderful program that is committed to providing future leaders in libraries the opportunities to complete schoool, have access to training opportunities, and professional mentoring.

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