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Showing posts from 2012

Happy Doctoral Candidate, at Your Service

After an hour and a half of nerve-wracking discussion with my comps committee last Thursday, doctoral comps went swimmingly, I was given a pass, and I am proud to announce that I'm now a doctoral candidate for the EdD in Learning and Leadership here at UTC!

There are four members of my doctoral committee, all have committed and now I just need to get them to sign the requisite Graduate School form. Dr. Ted Miller, my advisor for the past two years, has agreed to serve as my chair; Dr. David Rausch who coordinates the EdD program and specializes in leadership and organizational effectiveness theory is serving, Dr. Pamala Carter is serving as my methodologist, and Maureen Sullivan who serves as professor of practice and current ALA President is serving as my LIS subject expert. I have to get everyone's signatures on a graduate school form to make it Officially Official

And now, I'm working on drafting the dissertation prospectus and proposal, and am hoping to clear both t…

Doctoral Candidacy Approaching!

I'm about a day behind myself on all the due dates I'm facing, but since I'm tired, and my mind is racing so badly I'm not very productive, I thought I'd blog a bit.

This Thursday I have my comprehensive assessment for my doctorate. I've been working on the EdD in Learning and Leadership at UTC since Fall 2010. I'm in my last semester of coursework this summer (my courses finish the first week in August - two weeks!) And in our last semester, we also register for a "dissertation seminar," which is not actually a seminar at all, but a preparation for comps.

Our version of comps is a bit different than some other doctoral programs that I'm familiar with. Instead of either receiving research paper prompts in our major and minor fields, or being grilled by a committee on a number of books off of a reading list. Instead, our comps (usually short for "comprehensive exams" or "comprehensive assessment") focus on the seven competen…

Migrating Library Systems: Pulling the Trigger on WMS

UTC's Lupton Library is moving forward with our transition to OCLC's Webscale Management Service. This is a transition we've been working on for two years as we've kicked the tires on the new service, asked for additional development and functionality out of the brand-new system, and tested it to within an inch of its (and our) life.

Our ILS administrator, web guru and all around data-mogul-of-awesomeness Andrea Schurr has moved on to bigger and better things and now works for OCLC, but (thank the gods) is doing our data migration for us. I can't express how big a boon this is, especially since this is her third (?) time doing the data load, so she's an expert at it. No one else knows our data so intimately. Having Andrea with us for this massive move is something we are all grateful for.

Andrea was also our former Head of Access Services before UTC hired me back, so having her upstairs in IT has been a huge help to me in terms of helping me figure out what our…

Thinking, Fast and Slow

If you haven't yet read Nobel-Prize Winner Daniel Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow, get a copy and read it. Read it three times - it's dense enough, though written to be understandable for the average non-economist. For any academic librarian, educator, or anyone else interested in decision-making, critical thinking, and flaws in logic that people employ, it's an excellent book. I haven't even finished it yet (I'm about halfway through) so you won't get the full review until later, but go buy this book - it will change your life. It will cause you to reassess your own reactions to episodes in daily life and professional practice.

Coming Attractions!

After returning from Computers in Libraries 2012 (another successful year in DC) full of energy and ideas, I slammed immediately back into end-of-semester madness, and as we finish finals this week, our library enters the madness of once again preparing for an ILS migration. If all goes well in terms of the next release and functionality testing, we'll make the permanent move OCLC's WorldShare Management System and WorldCat Local this summer. And there's that little project of the new building that is coming along and set to open next summer, which will also have an impact on our activities this summer. And I managed to close out this semester, so this summer also brings with it my last 3 classes in the EdD program before I comp and move onto dissertation.

In any case, posts to expect in the next week or six:

- Brief recap of my experience at CiL 2012
- ILS migration thoughts
- ILL projects for the summer
- New building thoughts
- Thoughts on my worlds of librarian & g…

Library Day in the Life #libday8 Day 3

6:10am - Ugh, too early. Dog steals the pillow as I roll out of bed. I brighten slightly knowing I have a breakfast meeting where the host usually feeds us. Ugh. Morning. Grunt. Hrmp. Mrf.

7:30 - walk into the library. Greeted by my day circ super who asks knowingly, "Early meeting?" I am not known to be a kind morning person, so he is not offended by my grunted response. This is about the time I wish I could stand the taste of coffee. I check the emails, grab my notebook and the list of items the Faculty Senate president noted that she wanted to bring up at the meeting. And an umbrella - it's misting, but with my luck by the end of the meeting it will be pouring.

8:10 - I'm in the Chancellor's conference room waiting on our 8:30 meeting; the faculty Senate Exec members usually arrive a little early, so I always feel like a latecomer if I get there at 8:30. I'm scanning through a case study on flu vaccinations that I'll need to write a paper on after work. …

Library Day in the Life #libday8 Day 2

*writing this a day later - I have no idea what I did up through 10am yesterday morning - probably some combination of email, paperwork, checking in with staff, etc.*

10:00-12:00 - Working the circulation desk. I'm reading and sending emails when there's a lull, but it's pretty steady with slinging laptops, study room keys, and reserve textbooks. I take two fines, which keeps me from getting too rusty at using the cash register.

12:00 - 1:30 - Lunch with the Head of Reference and Instruction. Among other things we talk about her daughters (who are growing so fast - one is prepping for college already!), about work. I let her know that my EdD advisor has asked for me to design research instruction modules for the EdD students at two stages - one for incoming students, and one for students who make it to the pre-dissertation seminar. I okay it with her so that I'm not stepping on toes, and let her know I'll likely as to pick her brain; we discuss her work in a similar …

Library Day in the Life #libday8 Day 1

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6:45 - Alarm goes off. Otto the basset slinks up from against my knees puts his warmback against my chest, and lays his heavy (very heavy) head on my arm at my elbow. I obey the dog. Hit snooze until

8:00am- Groan, knowing this means I will not get my desired early start on the day. Un-groan, as my joints seem willing to move today for the first time in awhile.

9:00-9:15 - Get into the office. Check in with my day circ manager to make sure everything is on the level, sign timesheets and drop them off in the Admin office. Talk shoes with Anna, laugh at the meanface my boss is giving her monitor when she thinks no one can see her, hit up the supply closet for tape.

9:15-10:00 - Email triage. Among the important ones is one from the faculty president; as secretary I need to get the discussion board up for the full faculty to do the second reading of the proposed Bachelor of Integrated Studies degree.

10:00-10:30 - After email, into Blackboard to post the degree proposal and executive summ…

Now Available: Women on Poetry: Writing, Revising, Publishing and Teaching

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I am thrilled to announce that Women on Poetry: Writing, Revising, Publishing and Teaching, a collection of essays by talented women poets that I helped co-edit with Carol Smallwood and Cynthia Brackett-Vincent, is ready for ordering from McFarland! (Amazon currently reads as out of stock, we're working on fixing that.)

With a foreword by inimitable sonneteer and novelist Molly Peacock, and contributions from state poets laureate, Pushcart Prize nominees and winners, professors, workshop leaders, editors, and publishers, my hope is that this collection will have something for everyone. There are chapters for busy moms, chapters on using meter, chapters on publishing, blogging, promotion, journaling, contests, self-publishing, and more. You can see the entire table of contents here.

I learned an incredible amount while working with Carol and Cynthia on this collection. I learned about the difficulties of soliciting work by email only (and have slightly more sympathy for editors who o…

Harvard U. Libraries, Reorganization, and Transparency: A Note for Leadership

The libraryverse is a-twitter with talk of the town hall meeting about Harvard University Library's massive re-org project. Chris Bourg collected all of the commentary, sifting fact from fiction from hyperbole when #hlth was fresh (a #hlth search in Twitter will garner you lots of commentary). Tom Bruno's blog post on the facts of the meeting he attended is another must-read. Go see them now before continuing with this. It's necessary background info. I'll wait.

Reorganizations can be a scary business. I was involved in a minor organization at an ARL, my last place of work. It was teeny compared to the scale of the project Harvard is taking on. But know this: the reactions, from librarians and staff, were eerily similar. Everyone wanted to know, at the very least:

(1) Exactly what positions were being eliminated
(2) What would happen to the folks in the eliminated position
(3) How the reorg would affect everyone else in terms of reporting/employment/etc
(4) When we would k…

Reading in Review: 2011

Of the 98 books I remembered to log as read in 2011, the breakdown is as follows:

5 horror
5 paranormal romance
11 nonfiction
5 short story
6 scifi
14 fantasy
1 memoir
3 mystery
21 paranormal/urban fantasy
6 thriller
5 YA fantasy
5 poetry
1 parody

Definitely heavy on the braincandy reading; most of the nonfiction were education and LIS books related to my coursework and research, with a few essay collections and books on writing thrown in. favorites included Kevin Wilson's short story collection Tunneling to the Center of the Earth, discovering Cathrynne M. Valente, Peter V. Brett and Scott Sigler as new-to-me fiction writers (fantasy, fantasy and sci-fi/thriller, respectively), and Karen Marie Moning's Fever series in the paranormal/urban fantasy genre. The lowest points were Meyer's Twilight series and Janine Cross's Dragon Temple Saga series, whcih I would heartily recommend steering clear of.

For 2012 I'd like to make sure I get a lot more poetry in (I have no excuse not to,…