Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Libraries colleagues are very good at what they do, including throwing parties. And by all accounts, the Fourth Annual Libraries' Faculty and Staff Award Ceremony and Luncheon and was the best one yet.
Congratulations again to the award winners: Joanne Montanye; Barbara Lamonda; Donna O'Malley; and, Laurie Kutner. And thanks again to everyone who made the event possible.
MEET OUR ACADEMIC PARTNERS TOUR OF BAILEY/HOWE, 2-4 p.m.
Join Nancy and Selene on a trip around Bailey/Howe to meet the academic partners who share our building: Alan Howard in Statistical Advising; Wendy Verrei-Berenback and others in the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL); Robin Katz in the CDI; and, Susanmarie Harrington and Sue Dinitz in Writing in the Disciplines (WID). Refreshments will be served at the conclusion of the tour in the WID. There will be two tour times: 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. with each tour taking approximately 1 hour. Please email Nancy at Nancy.Bercaw@uvm.edu if you'd like to participate and which tour time you prefer. The tours begin in the Dean's Office.
Tuesday, Oct. 20
LIBRARIES ANNUAL MEETING, Bailey/Howe Staff Lounge, 9-11 a.m.
Join colleagues and department heads to learn about all the changes in the libraries since last year. Refreshments will be served.
Wednesday, Nov. 4
OPEN FORUM: TRINA MAGI ON PRIVACY, 10:30-Noon, Dean's Conference Room
Click here to Read the Burlington Free Press Article about Trina!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
By Robin Katz
Since I moved to Vermont in July, I've learned new words like "flatlander" and "camp." (Or, I thought I understood what someone meant when he said his family owned a camp, but it turns out his parents are NOT outdoor educators.) The best new addition to my vocabulary, however, is "maple creemee." And I recently had an excuse to eat two in one day, all while learning about my new home state.
I signed up for the first-ever New Faculty day trip around Vermont. Myself and three other new faculty members, including Tom Schmiedel from the Dana Medical Library, were led around the northwest corner of the state by Doug Lantagne, Dean of UVM Extension. Doug, a native of the Northeast Kingdom, was an excellent guide.
EXTENSION & THE LIBRARY
I didn't know much about Extension beforehand, but I noticed a few parallels with the library. Both our faculty serve unique roles in the university; we fulfill the educational mission in ways that might seem non-traditional to most teaching faculty. Our constituents are wide-ranging, and we are innately service and community oriented. As it relates to my job, I enjoyed hearing about Doug's successes in implementing a strategic marketing plan and improving Extension's visibility and outreach.
Our first stop was the Vermont Maple Outlet near Jeffersonville. We met the owners, a multi-generational Vermont family with deep roots in the maple trade. We also met a faculty member from the Proctor Maple Research Center, and learned a bit about the science and history of sugaring. Apparently, UVM helped invent a new tap which has been less invasive to trees and allowed for higher production. We saw a sugar house & tasted maple creemee no. 1 (first and best, FYI). This visit has me even more excited for Elizabeth Berman's project with Proctor & the CDI - soon we'll all have access to online primary sources all about maple.
FRUIT & VEG
Then we went to a produce & flower farm, where we again met with a UVM faculty member and an industry partner. The farmer explained that his neighbors in the dairy business often disparagingly call him a "gardener," but he runs a major operation and he's piloting an alternative fuel furnace to heat his hot house.
We stopped for lunch near the causeway at Lake Champlain and heard from a post-doc at the Rubenstein School about collaborative efforts between New York state, Vermont, and Quebec to improve water quality and ensure public safety.
We went to a big ole dairy farm. It was as shiny and clean as a Futurist painting. Less gross than it sounds: they harvest methane while processing the manure and turn the leftover fibers into bedding for the cows. Shocking lessons for the city girl:
-Cows lactate through the last two months of their pregnancy. -At twelve months, they can be impregnated. -Baby bulls don't stick around the farm very long.
-Most of what milk becomes is not milk or yogurt or even cheese but somewhat unrecognizable products. Lots of our country's "dairy" comes from Australia and Japan!
-Biggest dairy day of the year? Superbowl. On pizzas and in nacho cheese. And even more shocking: with rising dairy prices, even an efficient and well managed farm like this one is losing a lot of money.
SEEDS & GRAIN
Then we drove up to a road alongside the Canadian border. At this farm, I saw the largest sunflowers I have ever seen in my life. When we arrived, they were in the middle of pressing canola oil. Does anyone actually know what canola looks like, pre oil? I didn't - tiny, tiny, tiny little seeds. The innovation on this farm was impressive - they were developing ways for small scale bakers and farmers to mill their own local flour, they converted a tractor to biodiesel, and they've got ideas about producing local raw ingredients for all the great brewmasters in Vermont. Best of all, the Extension faculty at this site has an interest in researching (and bringing back) heirloom grains used in Vermont, and I was able to point out some library resources which might be useful to her.
We visited a weeklong camp for children whose parents are deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. It was held at the YMCA Camp Abenaki and was run by a non-profit for military families and Vermont 4-H. I learned that 4-H is a Land Grant program, and they tried to convince me that 4-H exists in nonrural areas as well.
From there, we went to a family orchard on the islands. One big lesson of the day: the need for diversification in Vermont. After apple pies a la mode - with maple creemee no. 2 - we headed home to UVM. It was so lovely to meet other new faculty and to learn about this great state. Now the wheels are spinning about how we can integrate ourselves into the community as well as Extension has.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Present: Mara Saule, Jeffrey Marshall, Marianne Burke, Paul Philbin, Selene Colburn, Tina Kussey, Jeanne Light, Nancy Bercaw, Birdie MacLennan
Absent: Peter Blackmer
I. Strategic Planning
The Council closely reviewed the Strategic Planning notes from the All-Staff Meeting. Changes will be made to the document accordingly. Some of the main issues coming out of the All-Staff Meeting included: assessment measures; roll for staff in strategic plan; how to provide greater clarity on customer-service improvement; the need for more staff meeting space; and, the need for more clarity on how the CDI fits into the libraries. The next step is to figure out what the priorities are and who the responsible parties are for enacting them. The goal is to have a template in place by the end of September. Marianne is leading those efforts with the help of Sue Bishop.
II. University News
The Provost Office is holding back 12 tenure position for trans-disciplinary positions. A Deans’ Retreat will be held on Friday, Aug. 28, to identify research opportunities for UVM. There has been no further budget news. Fall enrollment exceeds Admissions’ goal by 22 students.
Systems: Voyager has been upgraded. For the first two weeks of school, and in conjunction with ETS staff, Bailey/Howe systems will host a “Tech Tune Up” stand on Sundays from 4-7 p.m. and Monday through Thursday from 1-7 p.m.
Dana: Dana Medical Library is about to implement a new online reporting tool that records statistics for desk reference and literary searches, liaisons activities, education, as well as service and scholarly activities. The program can create individual and central reports. The Dana Education team is developing series of classes using Pub Med.
Special Collections: The search is underway for the new director of I&IS: six candidates coming to campus from Aug. 31-Sept. 25. Travis Puller preparing an exhibit on medieval manuscripts and SC is hoping to create on online exhibit or catalog from his work in early in September. Jeff is co-teaching from Letters to Literature with Robert Rodgers this fall. The Special Collections’ speakers’ series will be announced soon.
RD&A: Tech Services is collaborating on workspace re-design. They had a retreat at end of July, and formed a working committee. The Department is working with a cataloging group, as well as Marianne and Sandy, to train for consolidated cataloging functions between B/H and Dana.
Communications: A group to create clear policies around issues such as food, noise and cell phones for B/H has been convened. The signage project is moving forward, but in an effort to make sure everything is accurate, the installation date has been moved back to Thanksgiving or winter break. Selene, Daisy, Laura, and Robin represented the libraries at New Faculty Orientation. An email newsletter to faculty will be generated in the coming year. A pilot program on promoting collections is being developed.
I&IS: Daisy organized a recent session called “Talking about Teaching,” which was well attended and well done. Elizabeth attended the Faculty Honors Seminar. There will be no Saturday reference desk hours this semester as statistics show very little business. The question of how the staff at the circ desk should respond to questions about reference was raised.
CD&A: A lot of labels on book spines are fading, and DYMO has issued a retroactive statement that the labels are not for use in libraries. Albert is contacting colleagues about how they are dealing with it. The libraries’ intranet site now shows database usage statistics.