Monday, May 10, 2010

Feast or famine

One of my instructors in the school library tract consistently evoked the wisdom of and end of year wish list, something prepared when the principal came to the library with an opportunity to spend a specified amount of money in a short period of time. It is a policy that has served me well over the years, allowing me on occasion to say, "Yes, buy this!" When my funds are spent, I routinely create a folder and hold requests for the next fiscal year. But I have wondered which would be worse, feast or famine; having insufficient budget funds or having to scramble to find something when a windfall opportunity arises. After this week, the wondering is moot.

Today was the first day of summer hours for the library, the first day of summer courses at Ashland University, and the first day of the final push to spend remaining budget funds for this fiscal (academic) year. I was on target to finish late last week, until receiving an exciting phone call about the status of the new AU Columbus Center IRC (info here, here, and here) and its collection budget. Unexpectedly the days, hours, and weeks spent preparing a budget proposal and collection overview became an exciting reality. Time and effort put forth gels as the collection begins to takes shape.
  • Head of circulation traveled to Columbus to train staff members using OhioLINK and has become a touchstone for those charged with handling responsibilities of being an official OhioLINK pick-up point.
  • Systems librarian traveled to Columbus to set up systems, load OhioLINK software, and trouble-shoot connection issues.
  • Cataloging librarian created necessary location codes, will be cataloging all of the purchases, and developed a system of call numbers (accession and item type) that will make locating and re-shelving items simple for student workers.
  • Acquisitions library ordered everything and managed multiple budget lines as different departments provided start-up funds.
  • Technical services assistant is processing all of the collection items, many of them non-traditional in nature.
As a result of this particular feast, I have a bit of collection/resource envy. Why? The roll-top laminator slated for purchase is easy-load with a counter and the materials kits are all fresh and new. But for now, my car is loaded with Ellison starter sets and I will be in Columbus tomorrow for meeting scheduled for 9:30 am and we will be mapping the layout of the new IRC!

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