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Necessity or Amenity?

Posted in Advocacy, Funding, Learn Something on October 20, 2009 by Carrie
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Joey Rodger spoke at PaLA on Monday. Here’s a link to the article some of her presentation was based on: Public libraries: necessities or amenities?

What do you think?
Registered users of the site can comment below.

District Library Meeting Notes

Posted in Learn Something on August 27, 2009 by Carrie
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Event Date: August 19, 2009

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Here are the notes from the District Library Meeting that took place on Wed. Aug 19 at SIM. Meeting Notes

Here is the agenda packet that was distributed to all attendees: Handout Packet

Newport Library resources for Job Seekers

Posted in Learn Something on August 25, 2009 by Nancy
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Take a look to see lots of new local career resources gathered by Newport Public Library. Many titles for job seekers were purchased with a grant from the Perry County Community Foundation.
flyer for career link 2009

workforce resource grant brochure

What should libraries do?

Posted in Funding, Learn Something on July 30, 2009 by Carrie
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Your PANO membership gives you newsletters with snippets of information like this one:
New Guidestar Survey Shows Donations Dropping & Budgets Cut. According to a newly released study by Guidestar, over half of all charities surveyed, saw a drop in donations and a third have cut their budgets. Of the organizations that cut their budgets, 54% are making ends meet by cutting services, and 44% by freezing staff salaries. Of the over 2,000 public charities and private foundations surveyed, 36% of grant makers gave away less money in grants over the three-month period surveyed. Most disturbing was that 8% of the surveyed organizations reported that they were in imminent danger of closing their doors for lack of financial resources. Check out the report at GuidestarReport

What should your library know about public attitudes and perceptions of libraries?
Download the important OCLC report From Awareness to Funding here How can you harness support for your library?

Leadership Conference Notes

Posted in Advocacy, Learn Something on June 09, 2009 by Carrie
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The District Library Center Leadership Workshop took place on June 4 and 5. Many opportunities to seize this moment to showcase your leadership skills in changing times were highlighted while district center and system leaders assembled in a “brain trust” to talk about leadership strategies that could help bring PA libraries to greater success.

Below you’ll find a few highlights from the meeting and some of the ideas that were discussed. Here, see the detailed notes from Nancy Deering Martin that were recorded from discussions at the meeting: leadership-conference-summary060809 We used the attached list of questions to prepare for the meeting. Big Questions It might be a nice exercise to try to answer the questions yourself or to use them with staff to start them to thinking about ways to improve libraries. Ideas that came out of the discussions and networking with others during the meeting included extensive talks about regional and statewide collaboration on technology, statewide library card, a statewide referendum for more stable funding, and much more.

M. Clare Zales Update Highlights:
Leadership is about showing up and being present in the community. Leadership is individual and shaped by accumlated experience.
During this “fiscal crisis” our ideas and values of leadership will be essential. We all know that changes in the library community are coming and we will need principled leadership. We need all the different types of leadership responses to be shared. We need to stay informed and motivated because this is a challenge like no other in Clare’s career.
As for the budget, the cycle is off-trend in that it started with S.B. 850 instead of with the House. The databases that POWERLibrary offers would cost more than $40,000/library and if lost may be hard to get back. Especially critical is the precedent that could be set if Keystone funds, restricted receipt funds, are eliminated for libraries and are allowed to be spent on other things. Ask politicians why the deep cuts to libraries? Tell the stories about how your library gives users opportunities that help to keep them off of food stamps and other assistance programs.
There is so much at risk. Even our status is threatened. Lead through this time with commitment and verve.

Nancy Deering Martin on Change Leadership:
The periods of calm that used to allow time for recovery and preparation are infrequent now. We need to learn how to communicate and implement change better.
Identify and act on staff who are either Engaged, Disengaged, or Actively Disengaged.
People don’t leave organizations though, they leave bosses.
The greater number of decision makers the less likely something will happen.
Lead more lament less.
There is often a great difference between intent and results. Good leadership brings projects to good results.
Don’t let “tyranny of the inbox” conquer you.
Identify your own leadership strengths and your individual style. Work with it. (A good exercise for identifying strengths was completed.)
Spend more time on Planning and Problem Prevention to reduce time spent fire fighting. Your routine organizational work will someday be less daunting.

POWERLibrary Marketing
The Ivy Group will be working to create a marketing plan for POWERLibrary. They told us about their plan to make POWERLibrary more accessible and accepted ideas and feedback. The planning for this project is still in the research phases.

See what other libraries are doing for advocacy:
NCLD’s advocacy campaign
Example from NY

District Library Meeting at HER: The followup posted here

Posted in Carrie's Musings, Events - Library Meetings, General, Learn Something on February 17, 2009 by Carrie
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Event Date: February 17, 2010

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Register for the meeting at HER from 9-12:30.
Register online right here
Notes from Nov. meeting at KL
District Library Meeting Agenda HER2.10

2009 District Statistics Summary

Agenda topics include:
-Office of Commonwealth Libraries Update from Anne Kruger’s notes:
• OCL new website: take a look around, allow time to find things if you haven’t visited yet. CCommonwealth Libraries
Lots of downloadable resources: Library Resources
• Web Junction: PA is a participating partner. Sign up and use the items and collaborative workspace: webjunction.org
• 2010 One Book, Every Young Child distributions coming soon. Jane Hillenbrand, a Kindergarten teacher from Ohio and her husband Will Hillenbrand wrote the book. Attend the kick-off Tuesday, April 13, 2010 in the Capitol Rotunda followed by the Early Learning Forum the next day. The speaker will be announced at a later date.
• Summer Reader (Evanced) still provided.
• LSTA for 2010 or 2011?

-Annual Report Updates: Due dates, statistics for e-resources and other district services

  • OverDrive
  • Morningstar
  • HeritageQuest
  • POWERLibrary
  • ILL
  • Professional Collection
  • District Loans
  • AccessPA loans?
  • -Training Ideas for 2010

  • Decision Needed: Create a district plan to host PLA Virtual Conference? Yes or No? Here’s the info: PLA Virtual Conference
    March 25 and 26.
    Costs: Up to three attendees – $335; 4-9 attendees – $635; 10-20 attendees $1035.

  • District budget is $1000 for training for the year. How should we spend it? Classes with a small fee?
  • Multidistrict workshop with Chambersburg and York Co.

    -District Budget straight talk

    -Summit on funding and priorities: Create a talking points sheet to share forward.

    -Updates from CALD Electronic Resources Committee January 2010 CALD Reference Committee Meeting Minutes

    -Presentation of Grants Information Center offerings at ESA by Ann Bruner: Learn about the resources of the Foundation Center. The Grants Information Center provides grant-searching capabilities, training and resources for nonprofits, and the public. Resources available include:
    •The Foundation Directory Online Database
    •Grants to Individuals Database
    •Pennsylvania Foundations Online Database
    •Books and journals on various aspects of nonprofit needs, grant proposal writing, and fundraising
    •Reference staff, including the Supervisor of the Grants Information Center available and trained to assist those seeking grants and related information.

    -11:00a.m.: Janet K. Little, MPH, RD, LDN, Immediate Past President, Pennsylvania Dietetic Association Foundation: eatrightpa.org/PADAF Janet will speak on promoting health through nutrition education and research for the public and the dietetic practitioner.
    See a copy of her handout: PAFDALibrary Intake Form

    -News from around the district with plenty of opportunities to network with your colleagues.

    Hope to see you there.

  • Library Technical Assistant Diplomas Available

    Posted in Learn Something on August 14, 2008 by Nancy
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    The Library Technical Assistant program at Northampton Community College prepares you to enter the workforce as a paraprofessional capable of employment in a variety of libraries and information centers. All courses are offered online and are available to anyone across the state.

    The program’s courses focus particularly on information resources, services for children and management of a small public library. Technical skills in such vital areas as acquisitions, electronic formats and cataloging of all types of materials are addressed. Students in this program are required to perform online research, and visit libraries to investigate print resources and explore types of library services, in addition to reading assigned textbooks.

    Although courses can be taken on an as-needed basis to improve skills in specific areas, a specialized diploma is awarded upon completion of 15 LTA credits. Northampton’s Library Technical Assistant courses can be applied toward the Pennsylvania Department of Education certification program for public library assistants and provisional librarians.

    Register today! The new semester begins August 25.

    Call the Admissions Office at (610)861-5500 for information on registration and course offerings or check our web site at http://www.northampton.edu/distancelearn

    YouTube Videos for Librarians

    Posted in Just for Fun, Learn Something, Technology, Trendspotting on June 30, 2008 by Carrie
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    This is a list of free YouTube videos for librarians:
    100 YouTube Videos for Librarians
    Thanks to Jonelle for sharing the link.

    Steaming Video: “Tools of Engagement”

    Posted in Learn Something on May 20, 2008 by Carrie
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    Some speakers speak more from the college library perspective, but continue to watch until the terrific passionate speaker, Valerie Gross, of the award-winning Howard County Library in Maryland, speaks about marketing. You will thoroughly enjoy her exciting ideas.

    Here is the information you need:
    Click on the College of DuPage Press link for the archived streaming video of the May 9th “Tools of Engagement” teleconference. The link will be active for approximately 30 days.

    After the 30 days, the program will be moved to the College server where it will be accessible indefinitely.

    During the transition time from being hosted by an outside vendor to being hosted on the College server, the link will not work. If you find the link does not work for you after the initial 30 days, simply wait a day or two and try again later. The URL for the archived program will not change when it is moved to its permanent location on the College server.

    RFID & Security Technology Solutions

    Posted in Learn Something on November 29, 2007 by Carrie
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    Thousands of books are misshelved, missing or waiting to be checked in. Learn more about RFID and Security Technologies that organize, locate and process books – with speed and accuracy.

    Find out what RFID is, if you need it and how it works. Explore the basics, risks, security and benefits of this technology in your library.

    Visit the following website for more information: www.lyponline.com

    Learn about Federated Searching

    Posted in Learn Something on November 09, 2007 by Carrie
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    This information is excerpted from HLSC Newsletter:

    What is a Federated Search Engine and How Does it Work?For the past several months, Access PA and POWER Library have alerted you to the statewide WebFeat Enterprise federated search system currently being implemented by HSLC/Access PA and the POWER Library, with the guidance and support of Commonwealth Libraries. What is a federated search engine and how can it work best for you? To help answer these questions, you might want to take a few minutes to perform a literature search for federated search engine using the POWER Library resources available to you. Under General Reference in the POWER Library interface, we selected EBSCOhost. In the EBSCOhost interface, we searched for federated search engine in the following databases: Professional Development Collection, ERIC, Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts, and the Teacher Reference Center, which resulted in 16 articles, some of which are available in full-text. NOTE: Academic and Special Collection Libraries may access these resources under the Search Other Resources link on the Access PA website.

    You might find the following full-text articles of particular interest in helping to understand federated search engines:

    F*****ED Searchers? The Debate about Federated Search Engines. By: Fahey, Sue. Feliciter, 2007, Vol. 53 Issue 2, p62-63.

    What We’ve Learned FROM DOING Usability Testing ON OPENURL RESOLVERS AND FEDERATED SEARCH ENGINES. By: Cervone, Frank. Computers in Libraries, Oct2005, Vol. 25 Issue 9, p10-14.

    Libraries Online: Competing with Search Engines. By: Yahe, Paula. Media &Methods, Jan/Feb2005, Vol. 41 Issue 4, p4-5.

    Thoughts About Federated Searching. By: Jacss, Piter. Information Today, Oct2004, Vol. 21 Issue 9, p17-20.

    Crime in an LA Library

    Posted in Learn Something on October 26, 2007 by Carrie
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    Read an article about recent crimes and violence in Los Angeles, CA libraries.  http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-library25oct25,1,4325441.story?ctrack=1&cset=true

     Think about how you would respond if any of these situations happened in your library.

    Do you have a good relationship with local authorities?

    What signs should you look for to call for help before a situation escalates?

     How would your staff handle a patron asking to use the library as a refugee from others who want to attack him/her?

    Stop OverAcheiving, match time investment to desired results

    Posted in Learn Something on October 05, 2007 by Carrie
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    Do you find yourself totally overwhelmed with too many tasks to do?  Do you get to the end of the day and wonder why you haven’t finished your projects or gotten the results you desired?  Read this article about How NOT to overspend your time on some activities:


     Learn to do NO MORE than is necessary for expected results. 

    Math Tricks for Librarians

    Posted in Learn Something on October 05, 2007 by Carrie
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    In a lot of working meetings when the subject of numbers and calculations comes up, everyone around the table groans and seems to struggle.   Learn tricks from this website to impress everyone around a conference table with your quick math mind (and stop complaining that librarians don’t do math!): http://listverse.com/science/10-easy-arithmetic-tricks/

    Marketing with the Mud Flap Girl

    Posted in Learn Something on October 05, 2007 by Carrie
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    Target your message to your audience. 

    Wyoming did that with a campaign featuring the Mud Flap Girl.   What fun!  See the whole campaign: http://www.wyominglibraries.org/campaign.html

    Time Management Tips

    Posted in Learn Something on September 17, 2007 by Carrie
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    View the following document for some Time Management Tips.

    This document reviews the Top Ten Time Stealers and a few remedies for each.

    Architecturally Beautiful Libraries

    Posted in Learn Something on September 17, 2007 by Carrie
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    Enjoy a look at these beautiful libraries:  http://www.curiousexpeditions.org/2007/09/a_librophiliacs_love_letter_1.html

    Delicious Tags

    Posted in Learn Something, Trendspotting on September 17, 2007 by Carrie
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    Read this article from Library Journal about the use of tags to organize information in a more patron friendly way: http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6476403.html 

    The Joy of Computing: A Computer Cookbook for Librarians

    Posted in Learn Something, Technology on September 14, 2007 by Carrie
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    Here’s an interesting link for your favorites, especially for small and rural libraries without full time technology support:


    PA Library Laws and Public Library Subsidy

    Posted in Learn Something on September 11, 2007 by Carrie
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    The latest version of the Pennsylvania Library Laws is available on the Office of Commonwealth Libraries website. Visit the following link to view this PDF file:
    Pennsylvania Library Laws

    Also available on this website is the projection of the distribution of
    the 2007-2008 Public Library Subsidy. Visit the following link to view this information:
    Public Library Subsidy

    For more information contact:

    Name: Matt Kane
    Office: Bureau of Library Development
    Email: mkane@state.pa.us
    Phone: (717) 783-5743