Articles

The living voice is that which sways the soul,” wrote Roman author Pliny the Younger in the 1st century CE. Indeed, the audible voice is an essential component of an interview. Programs such as StoryCorps and other oral history programs preserve the voices that convey the memories of participants in important events of earlier times.Libraries have been collecting audio and video for many years, and audiovisual librarians well know the value of voices and moving images. Within the profession itself, Technical Services Manager A. Arro Smith—author of Capturing Our Stories: An Oral History of Librarianship in Transition (ALA Editions, 2017)—has been chronicling the oral histories of retired librarians on a supplementary website. Smith is working with former American Library Association (ALA) President Loriene Roy, in partnership with the University of Texas at Austin School of Information, on this repository.Many audiovisual collections are considered at risk. Years of data could be lost through deterioration of the original media unless it can be transferred to more durable digital formats. Libraries and other cultural institutions are rediscovering the value of these collections and are taking steps to preserve the sounds and images they contain. READ MORE
Book lovers in the New York City area—don’t miss BookCon, June 3, 2017, the “ultimate celebration of books” where storytelling and pop culture collide. And librarians interested in attending BookExpo, register before April 30 to get this special discount.  http://www.bookexpoamerica.com/ READ MORE
James Madison once wrote that a “popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps, both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance: And a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."Madison, who is recognized as the “Father of the Constitution” and a staunch advocate of open government, is honored each year on his birthday, March 16, which is celebrated as National Freedom of Information Day. READ MORE
Most visits between Deborah Hunter and her daughter end with Hunter at home, in tears.  Her daughter was diagnosed with schizophrenia shortly after starting college. The disease has progressed to a point where Hunter’s daughter doesn’t believe her mother is really her mother.Instead, in her mind, they are simply friends.  “I had to learn how to compartmentalize our relationship,” she said. “I had a very clear vision that I wasn’t a friend, I was her mother, so that transition was hard. It’s still hard.”As much pain as her daughter’s mental illness has caused Hunter, it also serves as the driver for her work.  Hunter is a case manager with Family and Children’s Services’ homeless outreach team and works within the Tulsa City-County Library System. READ MORE
A lot of the people visiting the nine locations of the Lake County (IN) Public Library System are still reading the print editions of newspapers and magazines, and walking out with borrowed books tucked under their arms, according to Carolyn Strickland, who serves as assistant director of public library services.But Strickland, as well as other library officials across the Region, has seen the role of libraries broaden into areas that were not even imaginable when she began her career 30 years ago.  "We're trying to have the resources and services that our population wants or needs," she said.Among the more innovative efforts is the Spark Labs program at the LaPorte County Public Library, which is about as far as you can get from traditional image of a group of silent patrons being shushed by an angry librarian.The Spark Labs, which are offered at each of the seven locations and in mobile form, provide hands-on learning experiences in the tradition of shop classes or vocational education programs, according to Library Director Fonda Owens. READ MORE
Tabatha “Tabby” Farney, director of web services and emerging technologies and associate professor, is a treasured resource at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs.She so impressed one colleague that when he nominated her for a 2016 I Love My Librarian Award, Donald Klingner called her “the best librarian I’ve worked with in my 42 years as a tenured or tenure-earning professor of public administration at public universities in Indiana, Florida and Colorado since 1974.”  High praise, but definitely earned, as her record as research librarian to the UCCS School of Public Affairs over a six-year period attests.During that time, she expanded access of scholarly information for faculty, students and staff. Her impact on the MPA (Master of Public Administration) helped it achieve a full seven-year accreditation from an international accrediting body, NASPAA (the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration).  “I know that her support services have contributed directly and in measurable ways to transforming lives – our own, our students, and in the communities we serve,” Klingner said. READ MORE
From local practices to national policies, there is growing acknowledgement that becoming an adult is a process, not just a date on a calendar. This concept is rooted in research that identifies a unique stage of physiological and social development between the ages of 18 and 25, known as Emerging Adulthood.1 It also reflects the challenges of a post-recession reality in which young adults often delay leaving their parents’ homes and health insurance policies.Libraries have responded to the concept of Emerging Adulthood in two major ways. First is the growth of educational programming that builds individual capacity, commonly referred to as “adulting.” A necessary step towards growing up is learning how to survive independently and, with a plethora of resources and deep connections to the community, libraries are well positioned to support that step. READ MORE
The Clear Lake City-County Freeman Branch Library is named after NASA astronaut Theodore Cordy “Ted” Freeman, who died after his T-38 jet crashed in 1964.  The name reflects Clear Lake City’s status as home to the NASA Johnson Space Center.But the library, which belongs to the Harris County Public Library system in the Houston area, shows that NASA doesn’t corner the market on innovation.  That innovative spirit is palpable at the library’s Jocelyn H. Lee Innovation Lab, where the library connects in meaningful ways with the community it serves. READ MORE
by Annette Shannahan, courtesy of Iowa City Press-CitizenHistorical societies and libraries provide many different types of documented information for their patrons. READ MORE
Will Torrence, a librarian at the South Philadelphia (PA) branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia, offers far more than books to the local community. He fields questions all day long, a third of which are about health issues. He listens  to patrons, who often come to the library when they are in need—or even in crisis—and he tries to improvise solutions to their most pressing challenges. “We can’t do everything, but every bit of help we can give makes a difference,” he says. READ MORE

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