Daily Archives: March 20, 2017

Holders’ $1.2M donation funds educational resources, education scholarship

John and Barbara Holder, 1965 alumni of Penn State’s College of Education, have made a $1.2 million estate commitment to be shared equally between the University Libraries and the College of Education. Half of the funds will endow an educational resources collection, and the other half will support an undergraduate scholarship for education majors.

“John and Barbara’s generous, forward-thinking commitment to supporting student success in the classroom and with University Libraries resources will help future generations of students minimize their debt responsibilities,” Barbara I. Dewey, dean of University Libraries and Scholarly Communications, said. “Through their endowment, the Libraries can increase its impact in helping Penn State students mitigate the high cost of access to scholarly knowledge.”

“This is a wonderful gift that will enhance collaborative work with our colleagues in the University Libraries while simultaneously making it more possible for our students to realize their dreams of becoming highly effective educators,” David Monk, dean of the College of Education, said. “We’re deeply grateful for the Holders’ generosity and deep commitment to advancing multiple parts of the field of education.”

The Holders, both public educators retired from the Batavia City School District, long have held libraries in high regard and are appreciative of the role libraries play at Penn State and in the local community. The John and Barbara Holder Educational Resources Collections Endowment will help ensure that the Libraries can provide research-level materials for all subjects and departments, including textbooks. The endowment will impact students by decreasing course costs and promoting their academic success.

The John and Barbara Holder Undergraduate Scholarship in Education will support students with income-based need by helping lower the financial barriers to a Penn State undergraduate degree in elementary or secondary education.

The complete Penn State News article is available to read online.


Campus and community invited to March 29 event “Many Faces of Intercultural Dialogue”

promotional graphic for intercultural dialogue event on March 29

Encouraging intercultural dialogues and conversations, the Penn State University Libraries joins three organizations, the Intensive English Communication Program (IECP), English for Professional Purposes Intercultural Center (EPPIC), and Global Connections, for an event to showcase intercultural dialogues facilitated and supported by the three organizations, both on campus and in the community.

“The Many Faces of Intercultural Dialogue” will be held from 3 to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, March 29 with 15 IECP international students and their Penn State student partners sharing posters about what they have learned about each other and their respective cultures during their conversation partner program. The event in the Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park, will also serve as a venue for EPPIC and Global Connections to present the many resources and opportunities available for the university and the community.

Each semester, through the IECP, international and domestic students are paired and together produce a poster that documents what they have learned about each other and themselves during six weeks of hourlong conversations about assigned cultural topics. The international students and domestic partners think about how to portray what they have learned in a short amount of time to a diverse audience.

Questions and feedback from these public poster sessions help the international students develop proficiencies and confidence in non-native spoken interactions while this rewarding experience also engages individuals seeking to develop a deeper intercultural awareness. Following the brief poster sessions, the students and visitors often continue their conversations, learning about their backgrounds as well as similarities and differences in traditions, families, food and holiday celebrations.

An 8.5×11 poster with information about “The Many Faces of Intercultural Dialogue” event is available as a downloadable PDF. The complete Penn State News article is available for reading online. For additional information on this event, or for questions about accommodations or the physical access provided, contact Mark Mattson, global partnerships and outreach librarian, at 814-863-2480 or mam1196@psu.edu in advance of the event.



Embedded librarian update in Canvas

The embedded librarian program is getting ready to launch an asynchronous course for librarians to complete prior to being embedded. There are librarians embedded this semester in Geography, Earth and Mineral Sciences, Political Science, and Community and Economic Development in addition to plans for future semesters.

The following blog also ran in the Canvas site:

The goal of library integration into Canvas is to make it easier for students to use the library. This places the library into the virtual learning space of students. It offers contextualized library instruction and support in the midst of their major projects and assignments in a just-in-time learning model. Integrations are much more effective when the system is built to handle these integrations and interoperability. There are three major library integrations that have been added to Canvas. The reason we did this is to meet the goal of making it easier for students, and thus increasing student use, of the library. The library website can be overwhelming to students, particularly online students, and allowing students to seamlessly interact with library resources while staying in their Learning Management System leads to more and better engagement with the library.

This post is intended to provide information on embedded librarians and the librarian role within Canvas. Imagine that you are a student in a class that has a large research component and you have never been asked to find a scholarly, peer-reviewed source before, nor have you used one article to find the known sources listed within that article. This is an overwhelming task for anyone, but it is particularly overwhelming to students who are balancing many different responsibilities. What would you do if you were a student in this situation? I know that I would turn to Google or another search engine that I frequently used to define these terms. I would then stumble around the library website, desperately trying to find something that would work for the assignment. Unfortunately, librarians see students like this on a regular basis.

Now what if there was a librarian embedded in the class and added to the course roster so students could directly identify their librarian and get help with a range of processes dealing with research inquiry? This librarian could manage a discussion board, create helpful tutorials, assess library-related assignments, or provide feedback on the sources students are using in their work. This is what is formally known as an embedded librarian. These librarians are particularly helpful for research-intensive, higher-level courses where students need to complete complex search strategies and synthesize literature. The librarian is added to Canvas and collaborates with the instructor, instructional designer, and online learning librarian to plan varying levels of integration into these courses.

This is made possible by the librarian role in Canvas. This role allows the librarian to be labeled “librarian” so that students know who they should contact in the event of research questions. This librarian may have a course guide that is also in Canvas and can create learning activities that are added to the overall course. The librarian can also provide feedback on research assignments and serve as an information consultant and resource acquisition specialist for the instructor and instructional designers.

It is very important that if you think an embedded librarian would be perfect for your World Campus course that you reach out to me at victoria@psu.edu and include me in conversations so I can coordinate and manage this program. Librarians should not be added to courses without their knowledge because this leads to miscommunication, misunderstanding, and frustration for all parties involved from the librarians who may not know how to or have the time to interact with students in this manner and students who might reach out for help to an unsuspecting librarian.

This program can be a valuable addition to any program on campus.

– submitted by Victoria Raish, World Campus and Penn State Online

“Godzilla Lecture” comes to Harrisburg Library April 11

promotional display with exhibit items for "Fantastic Beasts" lecture April 4On Tuesday, April 11, Dr. John Haddad, professor of American Studies and Popular Culture, will present a special “Godzilla Lecture” at the Penn State Harrisburg Library to celebrate a new collection of Godzilla and other “Kaiju” DVDs. From 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Haddad will present his lecture, “Fantastic Beasts, and How to UNDERSTAND Them: Godzilla, Kaiju, and the Nuclear Age.” Interested individuals may bring a lunch or snack with beverages provided by the library.

Thanks to a Student Activity Fund grant, the Harrisburg Library has acquired about two dozen Godzilla and other “Kaiju” DVDs for student leisure and academic viewing for those interested in pop culture, movies or Japan. “Kaiju” is a Japanese word that refers to “monsters” and is used mostly in the context of Godzilla and other Japanese films that were produced from the end of World War II, with the dropping of the atomic bombs on Japan, to the present.

Regarding academic purposes, Haddad teaches both graduate and undergraduate courses on popular culture. In these classes, he typically selects pop culture texts that students can connect to key intellectual ideas or historical concepts. He plans to use the Kaiju films as “nuclear narratives” that reflect the complex emotional responses of Japanese and Americans to nuclear power and weapons — responses in which fascination mingle with fear.

Though such narratives are of interest to any student of the 20th century, they especially resonate with students at Harrisburg, which almost literally rests in the shadow of Three Mile Island. Similar to Haddad, Dr. Charles Kupfer, associate professor of American Studies and History, teaches undergraduate and graduate classes on the theme of War and Culture. More specifically, he hopes to use the Kaiju collection to demonstrate how the Japanese used the monster movie, formerly a low-prestige genre, in a larger national effort to reconstruct Japanese pride and the Japanese psyche in the wake of World War II’s devastation.

Indeed, the same atomic power that brought terrifying destruction to Hiroshima and Nagasaki also led to the creation of Godzilla, who became an enduring symbol of Japanese pride and power. He also believes that the movies, which the Japanese successfully exported, came to represent Japan’s amazing economic resurgence later in the century. Both professors plan to use the film collection frequently in their classes.

The students of Penn State Harrisburg have a strong connection to nuclear/atomic power since our campus is adjacent to the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant, home to the most infamous meltdown of a nuclear plant in U.S. history. This connection impacts our identity in that our College literary magazine is entitled “From the Fallout Shelter” and the library houses a collection of materials related to the nuclear accident in 1979. Therefore, it is appropriate that this library should have the ultimate “Kaiju” collection for the enjoyment and leisure viewing pleasure of all Penn State Harrisburg students.

Thanks to the Harrisburg Student Activity Fund, and library colleagues Glenn Rudy for selecting the films and Angela Caldwell for designing a wonderful poster and exhibit.

– submitted by Glenn McGuigan, Harrisburg Library

Getting to Know You: Tricia Super

dark-haired woman smilingby Tracy Reilly and Jennifer Cywinski

Tricia Super is the type of employee that most supervisors want on their staff. She started working for the libraries as part-time, nighttime staff in 2005. Over the years she has had other full-time positions, but she’s remained dedicated to the library where she spends her nights and Saturdays. She especially loves working with faculty and students to get the materials that they need for success!

Great Valley’s graduate professional studies courses are held in the evening, which means that the library is busiest when Tricia is on the clock. Tricia also helps many of the local residents who visit Great Valley for a place to research and work. She has worn many hats including working with serials, databases, circulation, and reference. When you work at a smaller campus library, you tend to learn all aspects of the job.

Something you might not know about Tricia is that she and her family are long-time members of the Mummers in the Fancy Brigade Division! The Mummers Parade takes place every New Year’s Day in Philadelphia and is believed to be the oldest Folk Festival in the United States, having begun in 1901. It’s a local tradition that shouldn’t be missed!

Tricia is a current member at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church where she is a Eucharistic Minister, a volunteer with Cabrini University’s Alumni Office, and a member of the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians in Chester County. To top it all off, Tricia spent 12 years in the Girl Scouts and earned the Gold Award, which is the association’s highest achievement.

Winners selected in five categories in first-ever Edible Book Festival

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Thank you to everyone who helped out with judging the People’s Choice Award for the first-ever Edible Book Contest on Monday, March 20. “A Wrinkle in Time” by Preeya Kuray, a student in the Materials Science and Engineering graduate program, was selected as the winner! Other winners include:

  • Most Creative: Ashley Hoover with Animal Cracker Farm
  • Best Depiction of a Classic: Preeya Kuray with A Wrinkle in Time
  • Funniest/Punniest: Ali Zawoski with Twinkie Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • Most Appetizing: Lourdes Bobbio with Quidditch World Cup

Thanks to Rebecca Miller, Joe Salem, Linda Struble and Ann Thompson for their judging talents, and Jose Guerrero for his creative edible book project.

– submitted by Hailley Fargo, Knowledge Commons

Budget request system and timeline changes

The ABLE budget request application is currently being rewritten. The new application is called the Budget Request System which will be more straightforward to use for requestors and will provide more automated/online features for Library Administration and the Business Office.

This year the budget request period may start a few weeks later than in the past to allow for a full production launch of the new request system (mid to late April). This does not mean that you should wait for an announcement to begin working on your budget request plans. The content of the request will remain the same.

Please begin to prepare in the weeks ahead and be ready to enter your requests when the system becomes available. You will be able to copy and paste, so feel free to prepare your draft request in Word. You’ll be able to add attachments (quotes, supporting documentation, etc.) to each section of your request as well.

We’ll share more information about the system and training/instructions on how to use the new system as we get closer to the release date.

If you have questions or concerns please contact the project product owner, Kimlyn Patishnock.

– submitted by Linda Klimczyk, I-Tech

Inside Access: Revised Access Services Training Bulletin #22

by Fay Youngmark, Penn State Harrisburg Library

Access Services Training Bulletin #22 Processing the daily Clean Hold Shelf List Reports has been revised. It is now recommended that staff use the Discharging wizard to process materials that appear on these reports. In addition to the new procedure, this training bulletin also includes guidelines on what to do if users ask us to hold their items longer; what to do if you cannot find items on the reports; and best practice ideas for managing materials on your location’s hold shelves.

The Clean Holds Shelf List reports are used to manage materials on holds shelves at all library locations. They run Monday-Friday and are emailed to library staff. The Clean Holds Shelf List reports are not comprehensive. Items only appear once so it important to process materials promptly.

Important: Materials listed on the Clean Hold Shelf List reports have available holds automatically removed and current locations changed to match the materials’ home locations. To prevent staff from searching for and marking as ‘missing,’ materials that may be on holds shelves at other locations, it is important to process materials listed on the Clean Holds Shelf List reports daily.

Access Services Training Bulletins are located on the Intranet at https://staff.libraries.psu.edu/access-services-council/access-services-training-bulletins.

If you have any other ideas for training documentation, please contact the Circ-Reserves Expert Team at https://staff.libraries.psu.edu/ask-circ-expert-team.

Customer Service Tip: Quit your kvetching

Customer service expert Jeff Toister’s writes about an interesting Yiddish word taught to him by his great aunt: kvetch. It means to constantly complain. It can also refer to someone who is a constant complainer. Nobody wants to be known as a kvetch.

We’ve all been tempted to complain about a difficult customer. Perhaps they were unreasonable, a bit light on brains, or just plain mean. Whatever the reason, we should remember that those of us who don’t remember our history are doomed to repeat it.
Let’s say you encounter a grumpy customer who just can’t be satisfied. Afterward, you complain about it to a co-worker. This conversation makes you feel better because it validates how smart you are, how dumb the customer was, and the unfairness of it all. Unfortunately, that conversation will stick with you the next time you work with a similar customer and you’ll be unlikely to get a better result.

Here’s another version of the same story.

Let’s say you encounter a grumpy customer who just can’t be satisfied. Afterward, you tell a co-worker about how frustrated you were by the situation. Together, you confirm that you did a good job, but also brainstorm a few ways you can get better results in the future. The next time you work with a similar customer you get a better result because of what you learned from the last experience.

Rather than complain, try using this positive visualization technique: priming.

– submitted by Carmen Gass, User Training Services

Tech Tip: Android vs. Apple: Which one is for you?


graphic showing android logo versus apple logo for article discussing advantages and disadvantages of both

by Ryan Johnson, I-Tech

With devices in the technology market ever-changing, it’s hard to stay up-to-date on what the pros and cons of each phone are. Hopefully, these next few paragraphs will enlighten you on which system is for you.

Let’s start with Android and its advantages over competitors. Android advantages:

  • Great for multitasking; it can run many apps at the same time
  • Will always notify you – there’s always notification on home screen as well as LED blinking indicator
  • Playstore (app store) – thousands upon thousands of apps readily available, even those from third-party developers
  • Apps are also, on average, cheaper than those on iOS systems
  • Multiple phone options from various manufacturers include Samsung, HTC, Motorola and more – and each has its own style
  • Custom ROM can be installed
  • Use of NFC for multiple things, such as cashless payments or ease of sharing images and more
  • Ease of customization for user interface
  • Prices are wide in range
  • Flexible – pairs well with many devices

As with any technology, there are disadvantages to Android, too. Android disadvantages:

  • Most phones need some type of internet connection active (although this is not always the case)
  • Although many apps are free, ads will more-likely-than-not to be somewhere in that application
  • On average, battery life is poor
  • Device heats up easily
  • Updates are not given to all devices at the same time

Now let’s not forget Android’s top competitor – Apple. What are the advantages to this system, you ask? Here they are:

  • Updates come out seemingly quick
  • Pairs well with Apple devices, such as iPad and Mac
  • Little to no extra or unwanted apps that come on the phone already
  • On average, devices are worth more when you try to resell them
  • Easier charging with lightning cable – no wrong way to plug it in
  • iMessage & FaceTime – easy ways to communicate with others
  • Usually more storage available
  • Camera is one of the most advanced

Last but not least, Apple phones also have their downsides as well. The disadvantages of Apple are:

  • Their dependence on iTunes when connecting music to your computer
  • The headphone jack has disappeared, which means you need to buy an adapter or specific Apple Earpods
  • Prices are increasing with each new phone
  • You cannot remove the Li-Po battery, which would be handy for uses like charging externally
  • Lack of quick charging option
  • Screen resolution is less than other competitors

Now that you are enlightened about some of the major advantages and disadvantages of each operating system, you can choose which one best suits you.

Events: March 20

Spring 2017

Through Friday, May 5: “From the Trenches: The Great War in Sepia” exhibit, spring semester hours, Special Collections Library, 104 Paterno Library, University Park.

Through Friday, May 5: “Research Wrapped in Aesthetics: The Air Wall,” documentary exhibit, spring operating hours, Architecture and Landscape Architecture Library, 111 Stuckeman Family Building, University Park.

Through Wednesday, August 9, 2017: “Plastics: Knowledge and Information Taking Shape” exhibit, Pattee Library operating hours, Sidewater Commons and central entrance, Pattee Library, University Park.

Through Friday, August 30, 2017: “100 Years of the Pulitzers: Celebrating Our Humanity,” exhibitArts and Humanities Library operating hours, Diversity Studies Room, 203 Patee Library, University Park.

Monday, March 20: Edible Book Contest judging, noon-1:00 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday-Wednesday, March 21-22: 3D Scanning demonstration, by Angela Davis, Angel Peterson and Linda Struble, 1:30-2 p.m. and 3:30-4 p.m., Engineering Library, 325 Hammond Building, University Park.

Wednesday, March 22: COP Discussion: Ithaka Survey Results and Instruction, moderated by Steve Borrelli and Rebecca Miller, noon-1 p.m., via Zoom.

Wednesday, March 22: “This Book is an Action: The Politics of Feminist Publishing,” presentation by Jennifer Gilley, 12:15-1:30 p.m., Room 10, Abington Library, Abington.

Thursday, March 23: Conversations with Carmen, with guest speaker State College Mayor Elizabeth Goreham, noon-1 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Thursday, March 23: TEAM Library, 2-3:30 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Monday-Thursday, March 27-30: Maker Fair, week-long outreach event, Hazleton Library, Hazelton.

Tuesday, March 28: Diversity Committee Annual Potluck, noon-1 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday, March 28: Dean’s Forum, 1:30-3 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park and Mediasite Live.

Wednesday, March 29: The Many Faces of Intercultural Dialogue, presentations and conversations, 3-4 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Wednesday, March 29:  “The Ark Before Noah: Decoding the Story of the Flood,” lecture by Dr. Irving Finkel, 6 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Thursday, March 30: Charles W. Mann Jr. Lecture in the Book Arts, “Books, Bodies, and Circulations of Dancing in Early 18th-Century France and England,” by Linda Tomko, 4:30 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park, reception to follow in Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Monday, April 3: Centre County Reads: Rethinking the American West, panel discussion inspired by Stacey Lee’s “Under a Painted Sky,” 4-5:30 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday, April 4: Interactive Civility Workshop, 1:30-4:30 p.m. Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Wednesday, April 5: Undergraduate Research Exhibition9:15 a.m.-2 p.m. poster sessions; 4 p.m. awards ceremony, Alumni Hall, HUB-Robeson Center, University Park.

Wednesday, April 5: “You’re ‘kitten-me,’ it’s that easy? Tips and tricks for taming LionSearch and the CAT, 4-5 p.m. 211A Pattee Library, University Park.

Wednesday, April 5: Docunight: Iran via Documentaries, “Sonita,” documentary screening about, around, or in Iran, or made by Iranians, 7 p.m., 102 Chemistry Building, University Park.

Thursday, April 6: “Why Indigenous Knowledge Systems Matter for U.S. Land-grant Universities: Responsibilities and Challenges,” lecture by Kyle Whyte, 10-11 a.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Friday-Saturday, April 7-8: Boundaries of the Human in the Age of the Life Sciences Capstone Conference, presentations by ten renowned scholars, Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park. Register by March 17.

Tuesday, April 11: “Fantastic Beasts and How to Understand them: Godzilla, Kaiju, and the Nuclear Age,” lecture by Dr. John Haddad, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Harrisburg Library, Harrisburg.

Wednesday, April 12: Alumni Library event, 1-3 p.m., Earth and Mineral Sciences Library, Deike Building, University Park.

Wednesday, April 12: COP Discussion: ACRL Debrief, 2-3 p.m., via Zoom.

Thursday, April 13: Celebration of Scholarship Research Fair, noon-6 p.m., Gym, Athletics and Recreation Building, Wilkes-Barre.

Thursday, April 13: Art + Engineering = Creative Problem Solving, lecture by Penn State Laureate Rebecca Strzelec, 1-2 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park, and Mediasite Live.

Friday, April 14: Remembrance of Kiarostami: The Life of an Iranian Artist, all day event, multiple locations, Pattee Library and Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday, April 18: “CODE: Debugging the Gender Gap” documentary, sponsored by the Libraries Diversity Committee, 7-9 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday, April 18: Tech Update, by Libraries I-Tech staff, 2-3 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park, and Mediasite Live.

Wednesday, April 19: Poetry Slam7-9 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Thursday, April 20: Beyond the Database Demo: Information Literacy Instruction at the Foundational Level, 11 a.m.-noon, 211A Pattee Library, University Park.

Thursday, April 20: Earth Day Marigold Giveaway, by the University Libraries Green Committee, 2-4 p.m., Frankllin Auditorium, Pattee Library, University Park.

Thursday, April 20: 2017 Public Poetry Contest winners public reading, 7:30-8:30 p.m.,
Pennsylvania Center for the Book, Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Sunday, April 23: International Write-In, 3:30 p.m.-midnight, Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Wednesday, April 26: Financial Literacy Workshop, 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m.,
Black Box Theater, Slusser/Bayzick Building, Hazleton.

Wednesday, April 26: Conversations with Carmen, with guest speaker Bob Smith of the Center for Spiritual and Ethical Development, Pasquerilla Spiritual Center/Eisenhower Chapel, noon-1 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Friday, April 28: Last day of spring classes.

Sunday-Tuesday, April 30-May 2: DeStress Fest, 3-8 p.m, University Park library locations.

Monday-Friday, May 1-5: Final exams.

Wednesday, May 3: Docunight, documentary screening about, around, or in Iran, or made by Iranians, 7 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Thursday, May 4: Outstanding Undergraduate Thesis Award Public, Oral Defense, three award finalists, 3:30-5 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Friday-Sunday, May 5-7: Spring commencement weekend, most campuses.

Monday, May 8: MediaTech Expo, Media and Technology Support Services invites vendors to showcase the latest in technology products, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., President’s Hall, Penn Stater Conference Center, University Park.

Tuesday, May 9: COP Workshop, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Please submit event information to Public Relations and Marketing via the Library News submission form.