Monthly Archives: August 2013

Library News for August 26

This week in Library News:


Dean’s News

By Barbara Dewey, dean of University Libraries and Scholarly Communications

It’s hard to believe that another fall semester is about to begin. I hope you’ve had the chance to see the Penn State Welcome Back video. The library is highlighted in a number of places. Over the summer we were able to complete a number of projects at University Park and on the campuses to further improve facilities and services for our students and faculty. Examples include new furnishings, classroom upgrades, renovations in EMS, new online reference service, new video monitors with room availability, and a retreat devoted to University Park space planning. We have also begun to discuss the strategic planning process for the Libraries. Mike Furlough is leading this effort and you will hear more details soon. If you have other projects to add let me know.

I have been meeting lately with our new Provost, Dr. Nick Jones. He is very enthusiastic about the library and mentioned us as one of Penn State’s shining stars at the Academic Leadership Council retreat last week. Dr. Jones, along with President Erickson, hope to stop in at the Open House in September. We are very fortunate to have support at the highest levels of the university. This year I am chair of the Academic Leadership Council comprising deans, chancellors, and vice presidents. I will provide you with periodic updates on university-wide initiatives and issues based on this work.

I am delighted to welcome all of our new faculty and staff. We are excited to have you on our team. Many thanks to everyone who participated in interviews and are making our new employees feel welcome.

I hope you will save the date, October 2, 2013, 2-3 p.m. for the first Dean’s Forum of the year in Foster Auditorium and on Mediasite Live. The agenda will be forthcoming but we will discuss strategic planning and our process. Let me or Sandy know if there are other items or if you have good news I can share in the Kudos section.

Tombros Librarian for Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies appointed

Charles E. Jones has been named the Tombros Librarian for Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies in the University Libraries at Penn State. His appointment will begin August 19.

Jones comes to Penn State from New York University where since 2008, he was the head of the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World Research Library. Prior to that he was head of the Blegen Library, the American School of Classical Studies Research Library on Ancient Greece, Classics, and Mediterranean Archaeology in Athens, Greece. His many publications include bibliographies, reports, and essays, including the development of a tool for the organization and discovery of open access scholarly resources for the study of the ancient world. He has served on a number of editorial boards within the states and abroad. At the forefront of digital services to Classics for years, he is an active blogger on the exciting array of digital tools under development with application to the humanities.

Dean Barbara I. Dewey notes, “The Tombros Librarian chair was created in 2009 by Ann and Peter G. Tombros and is one of six endowed faculty positions, each of which provide discretionary funds for programs and events that directly benefit students and help the Libraries maintain and create world-class collections and services.”

Jones may be contacted at or 814-865-3616.

Libraries Diversity Residency Program announces inaugural appointments

The University Libraries have launched a new Diversity Residency Program to help prepare recent graduates for leadership positions in the field of librarianship. The inaugural resident librarians, Rachel Smith and Mohamed Berray, began their two-year program at Penn State on August 19. Smith and Berray will initially work in the Research Hub, providing advanced research services for faculty and students in business, and the behavioral and social sciences. In future assignments they will rotate through the Libraries in order to help them build a broad portfolio of experience to ground their future career development. Both Smith and Berray are recent graduates of the Library and Information Studies program at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro (UNCG).

Barbara I. Dewey, dean of University Libraries and Scholarly Communication, explained, “Libraries serve everyone, regardless of background, and our librarians should come from all backgrounds to help reach diverse constituencies. Rachel and Mohamed are exceptional librarians, and we are thrilled to have them join us.” According to data compiled by the American Library Association in 2012, professional librarians are predominantly female and white, but librarians of color are underrepresented in the profession in any setting. The program’s goal, Dewey said, “is to increase diversity among Penn State’s Libraries’ faculty, increase diversity in the profession, and enhance Penn State’s reputation as a leader in promoting and cultivating diversity in all areas.”

In addition to her MLIS, Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in theatre performance from North Carolina Central University. She was an Academic and Cultural Enrichment Scholar from 2011 to 2013 and an ARL (Association of Research Libraries) Career Enhancement Program Fellow in 2013. She previously worked as a graduate researcher and content developer at UNCG Libraries Special Collections and University Archives and a graduate assistant in the Department of Instructional Technology and Teaching Resources Center in the UNCG School of Education. She has also held an internship with the Bennett College for Women, Thomas F. Holgate Library. Smith is a member of the American Library Association (ALA), the Black Caucus of the American Library Association, the North Carolina Library Association, and the Progressive Library Guild.

Berray holds a master’s degree in political science from American University, Cairo, Egypt, and a bachelor’s degree in biological science from the University of Sierra Leone, as well as the MLIS. He previously worked as a UNCG graduate assistant and coordinator, International Federation of Library Association International Comparative Librarianship Communitas, and a reference and instruction librarian as well as assistant director and then head of the Law Library at the American University in Cairo. He was also a Fulbright Scholar and an International Librarians Enhancing Access and Development (ILEAD) Fellow. Berray is a member of the U.S. Department of State Alumni and the International Association of Law Libraries and a former member of the Center for Migration and Refugee Studies Joint Steering Committee (American University, Cairo, Egypt).

Smith may be contacted at and Berray may be contacted at

Student exhibit highlights shamanism in Pre-Columbian Ancient America

By Michael Case, Education and Behavioral Sciences Library

Sarah WilkieDuring the 2013 spring semester, first-year Penn State student Sarah Wilkie explored the variations of shaman roles in Pre-Columbian Ancient American cultures as a capstone research project for her ANTH 220 course. Sarah, who is majoring in health policy, selected this particular general education course in order to broaden her knowledge about cultural medicine practices in Mesoamerican civilization. The capstone research project required that Sarah investigate a topic about a process supported by linked art and artifacts known in the Mesoamerican archaeological record, but distinguish between art and artifact interpretations while coordinating a limited number of specimens to explain purposes and functions.

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** UPLEA’s pets supplies drive for Pets Come First will run through the end of August. Paper towels, dry and canned cat, kitten, and dog food, and kitty litter are especially needed. Please see an earlier post for more details. **

August 29, 10-11 a.m., 302 Paterno Library: Library Research Basics

September 4, 10 –11:30 a.m., 315 Pattee Library, west: Introduction to Zotero

September 4, 12:15 p.m.: Film – “Acid Test: The Global Challenge of Ocean Acidification. ” 22 min. Carbon dioxide pollution is changing the chemistry of earth’s oceans, rapidly making the water more acidic. Rising acidity has the potential to drastically alter the ability of many organisms, especially those with shells, to survive. Scientists explain what is happening and why we should be concerned. Earth and Mineral Sciences Library, 105 Deike.

September 5, 10-11:30 a.m., 302 Paterno Library: Introduction to Mendeley

September 10, 6:30 p.m.: The public is invited to “Meet Eyal Press, author of ‘Beautiful Souls,’” an interview by Steven Herb, in Schlow Centre Region Library, 211 S. Allen Street, State College, PA. “Beautiful Souls” was selected by the Penn State Reads series to be read and discussed by incoming freshmen.

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Create a filter to route new service request emails in UCS

By Ryan Johnson, technology training coordinator

The new Service Request System uses email as a key component to update you on the progress of your IT or Facilities Requests. To avoid these emails cluttering up your inbox and possibly being misplaced, I would recommend creating a filter in UCS to automatically route these emails into a specific folder. This will allow you to quickly find and respond to requests.

To create a Service Request Filter in UCS, first go to the Preferences tab and select Mail->Filters.

preferences screen in ucs

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LHR News for August 26

Please join us in welcoming the following new hires:


Timothy Matz – Berks Thun Library
Ryan Smith – John M. Lilley Library, Behrend College
Chloe Maiers – Research Hub and Knowledge Commons
Morgan Sirianni – PAMS Library
Shawn Grasso – Worthington Scranton Campus Library
Carmen Cole – Research Hub
Cassidy Holmes – Penn State Press
Cody Stubbs – Engineering Library
Natalie Rodriguez – Abington College Library


8/26/13 Nina Clements – Reference and Instruction Librarian, Vairo Library, Penn State Brandywine

Volunteers needed for University Park Libraries Open House

By Megan Gilpin

The Libraries’ Open House will be held on Wednesday, September 11 and Thursday, September 12. Once again, we need your invaluable help!

We need volunteers to:

  • Decorate the prize room and first floor (Tuesday 9/10 – 10-11am, 11-12pm, 1-2pm)
  • Deliver balloons (Wednesday 9/11 – 9-10am)
  • Staff our greeting stations and prize room (Wednesday 9/11 and Thursday 9/12 – 10am – 6:30pm)
  • Staff the button making station (Wednesday 9/11 and Thursday 9/13 – noon-4pm)
  • Help with clean-up (Thursday 9/12 – 6:30-7:30pm)

To facilitate scheduling this year, we have set up a sign-up schedule using

The success of Open House is directly tied to the participation of our enthusiastic and generous volunteers. Thank you for volunteering! If you have never been involved with the open house before, don’t be nervous about your role — we will be providing orientation sessions to update everyone on what’s new, different and noteworthy about the Open House this year.

We are making some significant and exciting changes to the Open House this year so please plan to attend one of the following Open House Orientation sessions:

  • Wednesday , September 4 from 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM in Foster Auditorium
  • Thursday , September 5 from 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM in Foster Auditorium

As a special thank you to all who volunteer either in their departments or in the general areas, we’re happy to be offering a printer donated by PSU General Stores as well as lunch with Dean Dewey.

Presentation and workshop on library assessment

The University Libraries will host Megan Oakleaf of Syracuse University, on Monday, September 16, for a visit focused on library assessment. Oakleaf will help us learn more about assessing library services so that we can document the value that we provide to our users. All are welcome to attend the activities of the day, which begin at 10 a.m. with her presentation, “The Value of Academic Libraries: Research and Recommendations,” detailing Oakleaf’s findings from a major ACRL-funded research project on assessing the academic library’s impact in light of increased calls for institutional accountability. This presentation, followed by a Q&A period, will be held from 10 – 11:30 a.m. in Foster Auditorium, Paterno Library,  and broadcast live on Mediasite.

In the afternoon, from 1 – 4 p.m., Oakleaf will facilitate “The Value of Academic Libraries: Reframing and Reflecting,” a set of highly interactive workshops in Foster Auditorium. In small groups, attendees will create a library impact map to identify alignment between library services and institutional mission; reflect on needs and goals of various library stakeholders; and discuss potential partnerships to better position the library to meet institutional goals. Following the workshops, an optional wrap-up session with Dr. Oakleaf will be held from 4 – 4:30 p.m. All of these activities will use materials from Dr. Oakleaf’s “Academic Library Value: Impact Starter Kit” (all materials will be provided). The afternoon session will not be broadcast on Mediasite due to the highly participative, small group nature of the activities. Individuals requesting travel funding to and from campuses may indicate this on the RSVP survey arriving in your e-mail.

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What’s not to like?

Submitted by Jeff Edmunds, for the Next Gen 2.0 Group

The Next Gen 2.0 Group (previously known as the Library Management System Requirements Working Group) is still seeking your input about what works, and doesn’t work, in our current primary systems: WorkFlows, The CAT, and LionSearch. A survey for gathering feedback will be active until September 8, 2013:

Please let us know what you like and what you don’t like about the current systems, and what features we should look for as we draft requirements for any future system.

Next Gen 2.0 Group: Bob Alan, Barbara Coopey, Jeff Edmunds, Mike Giarlo, Lauren Kime, John Meier, Emily Rimland, and Dace Freivalds (chair)

Library News for August 19

This week in Library News:


Meet author of ‘Beautiful Souls’

The public is invited to “Meet Eyal Press, author of ‘Beautiful Souls,’” in an interview by Steven Herb on Tuesday, September 10, 6:30 p.m., in Schlow Centre Region Library, 211 S. Allen Street, State College, Pennsylvania. “Beautiful Souls,” Macmillan Publishers, explores what impels ordinary people to defy the sway of authority and convention. It was selected by the Penn State Reads series to be read and discussed by incoming freshmen.

Press’s work has appeared in the New York Review of Books, The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, The Nation, and the Raritan Review. He also is the author of “Absolute Convictions,” a narrative account of the abortion conflict. He is a past recipient of the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism.

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Film series highlights key environmental-related issues

The popular Earth and Mineral Sciences Library film series returns this fall semester with a varied line-up of documentaries. The film screenings are held every Wednesday at 12:15 p.m. in 105 Deike Building, and are free and open to the public. More details about the series can be seen online at:

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Indigenous Geography workshop

doug hermanAn Indigenous Geography Workshop, led by Dr. Douglas Herman, will be held Monday, September 16, 1:00–4:00 p.m., in the Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library. Herman, a senior geographer at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian, will introduce participants to a novel grid he developed to document, through the voices of local residents, the important elements of life in an indigenous community. He created the grid during his research in the Pacific, described at, and he has used it with classes he teaches at Towson University. In the workshop, Herman will illustrate how the indigenous geographic technique can be employed to compare and contrast communities in different regions of the world.

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Free seminars in research skills, citation tools, data management

The University Libraries have scheduled a wide range of free seminars this semester to help students, faculty and staff with their research needs. Classes are available in basic library research skills and the following citation management tools: Zotero, Endnote and Mendeley. Additional introductory level and advanced level classes will be offered in LionSearch, Penn State’s powerful library search engine. In addition, two workshops will be held on data management. The full line up of classes, including descriptions and direct registration links, is listed below.  More details and registration information are also available from the Libraries’ website.

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Library Clean Up Day is tomorrow!

Library Clean Up Day will take place tomorrow, August 20, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., in Mann Assembly Room. Items may be brought down throughout the day. Feel free to drop and shop!

Ever consider donating scrap paper? Any scraps without sensitive information are welcome. One man’s trash is another’s treasure! While you’re at it, why not clean up your virtual space by deleting old files! As the libraries move towards a greener tomorrow, use this opportunity to clean out and recycle unwanted items. Participation in the cleanup is voluntary, but encouraged. Nearly all remaining items at the end of the day will be reused or recycled by university salvage.

Please contact Megan Folmar at with any questions.