Thursday, August 31, 2006

Reflections and questions

I worked two years as a children's librarian in a public library before starting my MLIS course work at Pitt, sorry, the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to beginning classes, I did not know anyone attending grad school for library science and was clueless as to what it might entail. I did know that to move forward with working in a library, be it academic, school, or public, I would need the library science degree.

While attending Pitt, I was blessed with Mary Kay Biagini, as an advisor and a library science faculty willing to patiently answer my unending questions. I can not count how many times I visited Arlene Taylor for help while taking Organizing Information. I still remember how Susan Alman helped me get my first job interview and has continued to field questions five years after graduation. Missy Harvey, computer science librarian at Carnegie Mellon University, taught the required technology class and after graduation email to Missy helped me create the first IRC web page and laid the foundation for continued web work. Margaret Kimmel taught children's literature courses and in one we were required to write a book review every week. When beginning the IRC Book Review Blog, I went back through my notes to refresh my memory concerning what I hope are well written reviews. Lastly, I did my student teaching practicum at Penn Hills Senior High School under the direction of Sally Myers who is now the Secondary Technology Coordinator, Penn Hills School District. I can only hope to be as good at my job as she was at hers. Like Sue Alman, Sally was someone who helped me get a school library job interview.

This short trip down memory lane serves two purposes; a reminder of how wonderful these people were during my schooling and to illustrate why I am an email sounding board for a friend who is a recent MLIS graduate. I had support, but did not have someone already in the profession to whom I could ask more questions. I continue to be surprised the number, quality, and thoughtfulness of the questions he asks me as he considers academic librarianship as a career path. With an email from him in my in-box at home, I am going to ask permission to post some of his recent inquiries here. He's not the only newbie with these questions and it might be nice to get other opinions on topics we have discussed because quite honestly, I get as much from the exchanges as he does.

At this point, he may now be looking at this post saying "No way, Diane." My mistake for sending him this blog address, but we'll see.

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Monday, August 28, 2006

Widgets, widgets, widgets

Another day, another widget! As we continue to make changes to the Library Cloud blog, different things will be added to, and possibly removed from, the sidebar. When changes are made, an accompanying post will explain what is new. Today's entry is a LibraryThing widget, or two. I am currently oddly enamored with widgets. Big ones, little ones, free ones, and silly ones, they are great add-on items for blogs. Here are a few widget selections under consideration:

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Thursday, August 24, 2006

"Where are they now?"

The anniversary of Hurricane Katrina is next week. In some respects it is hard to believe a year has come and gone. But after attending the ALA conference in New Orleans in June and spending a day working with the Librarians Build Communites project, it is glaringly obvious in some areas it was only yesterday.

Inside Higher Ed has contacted several institutions, and people dealing with this still, and reports on how the hurricane continues to affect their lives a year later.

"With the year anniversary of Katrina approaching, Inside Higher Ed checked back in with some of the people who took time amid the chaos of the hurricane’s aftermath to talk about how the storm affected their work and lives. Nearly a year after they were first quoted in Inside Higher Ed, some of these faculty members, students and administrators have left the institution they were at when Katrina came; some are still fighting for their institutions’ survival on a daily basis; and some are busily reconstructing their research, and in some cases their homes." ~ Where are they now? 8/24/06

Also of interest is the original article, Scholars on the Road, posted September 12, 2005.

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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Logo check

Using Blogger's server, instead of one of our school servers, makes getting a logo onto the blog more of an issue. Here's the logo developed.

Our name was inspired by tag clouds, author clouds, zoom clouds, topic clouds, and other like minded information widgets. A few of the topics we may discuss are included, but not limited to, what is detailed in the clouds.

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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Coming Soon

Welcome to Library Cloud, a collaborative blog effort by academic librarians Rebecca Bailey, Case Western Reserve University and Diane Schrecker, Ashland University. The beginning of an academic school year is not the best time for undertaking a new project. However, as we may address some beginning-of-the-academic-year topics, we thought starting now would be beneficial and appropriate. The blog format will change somewhat in the next few days as we finalize the look (choosing templates) of Library Cloud and detail specifics such as our purpose and reasoning behind this effort.

With luck, I will get the nifty logo attached as well!

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