Getting Ready for Summer School

I paid for summer school today, the last summer school I’ll have to pay for, which is pretty classroom_2exciting! The text book I ordered via Amazon earlier this week arrived yesterday, so things are falling into place. Summer Session II doesn’t start until July 1, but I’m heading to ALA Annual the last few days of June, so I’m working hard to get things ready for both summer school and my trip. Thank goodness, my class doesn’t meet for the first time until the day after I get back from Las Vegas, so I’ll be able to get some rest.


Clipart from

Posted in ALA, Annual, Books, Class, Getting Ready, Library School | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Better Luck Next Time

In the past few days, I learned that our ALA Student Chapter of the Year nomination didn’t make the cut; neither did the Hack Library School ALA Conversation Starter proposal I contributed to.¬† I learned some things from both, though, and hope to be part of other ALA presentation proposals in the future.

Speaker Camp

Speaker Camp

While gaining experience and talking with others who have done presentations at ALA and other conferences will be the most helpful, I’ve been searching for other resources too. I’ve discovered a book on Amazon (but not in the library *yet*) called Speaker Camp: A Self-paced Workshop for Planning, Pitching, Preparing and Presenting at Conferences, that looks promising, so I’ve added it to my Amazon Wish List. I’ve also renewed my membership to Blue Devil Toastmasters.


Posted in ALA, Professional Development | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Waiting for News

desk_calendar_3Last month, I applied for a couple of things with library-school related groups, both with “early April” notification. One is being part of a Conversation Starter on library advocacy with the Hack Library School bloggers at the ALA Annual Conference this summer, and the other is the ALA Student Chapter of the Year Award. Good thing I’m busy with full-time work as well as my library school assignments, or the waiting would be driving me bananas!

Working on the Conversation Starter proposal with other HLS bloggers was a creative process that made me glad I’ve gotten to meet such a cool group of library students from across the nation this academic year! I’ve learned so much from them.

The Student Chapter of the Year Award nomination was a culmination of our chapter’s activities and awards for the academic year. It was the first time my library school’s ALA Student Chapter has applied for the award since I’ve been there, and maybe it’s the first time ever. While we’ve done some really good things this year, the completed nomination form made me wish we could’ve done even more. In the big scheme of things, though, it made us look at all we’ve accomplished over two semesters, and hopefully give next year’s officers some ideas.

Stay tuned!

Clipart from

Posted in ALA, Annual, Library School, Networking, Professional Development | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Is the End Really In Sight?!


Class outside, anyone?

Wow. I just registered for my last nine hours of library school. Wow! Now, there’s a big difference between registering for classes and completing the work, and I know that. Still, it’s pretty exciting!

I emailed my adviser over the weekend to get my registration code for summer school and fall semester, and asked her for advice on my last elective. Part of her advice was to check the syllabi folder in the SLIS Library. My response was, “There’s a syllabi folder in the SLIS Library?!” Almost done, and I just found out there’s a folder of previous class syllabi sitting right in our library. Geez. Would it have changed my mind on any of my classes? Maybe, maybe not. But knowledge is power, right? Ah, well, something to pass on to future students.

So, I’m planning to take Research Methods (my last required class) this summer, and am planning on doing a practicum in fall, along with an elective. Right now I’m signed up for “Government Publications.” I’ll take a look at that syllabus when I’m on campus later this week! ūüôā


Clipart from

Posted in Class, Library School, Professional Development, Work | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Attending a “Different” Conference

Last Friday, I attended the North Carolina Serials Conference for the first time. When I told my colleagues about signing up, some were surprised (since I don’t work with serials). But people who’d attended that conference before were supportive and encouraged me to go, and I’m so glad I did! (It helped that the conference was just a one-day event at the Friday Center in nearby Chapel Hill, so it didn’t throw a kink into my work, class schedule or study schedule.)

Even though the name of the conference implies it’s a conference for people who work with serials, I’m so glad I went. One of the sessions I attended about eBooks, where, much to my pleasant surprise, I met a Facebook friend and librarian in person! Even better, she was one of the presenters for the eBook session, and we ended up at the same big table for lunch, where we got to chat some more. The other breakout session I attended was on RDA, and while part of it was about serials cataloging, parts of it were more general, and I took away some ideas that will help me with my own work.

In addition to the interesting sessions, it struck me that there was plenty of time to network and chat with other librarians. Even though I knew a few people there already, it’s always nice to chat with them in a different space about different things, and meeting new people is always a plus!

All in all, it was a great conference, and I look forward to going back next year!


Posted in Networking, Professional Development, Skills | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

ALA Midwinter Meeting 2014

ALA Midwinter 2014 Registration Area

ALA Midwinter 2014 Registration Area

Late last month, I attended American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting 2014 in Philadelphia. Although it was my second ALA conference, it was my first Midwinter Meeting, as well as my first visit to Philadelphia in several decades, and I really enjoyed both Midwinter and Philly!

My hotel, a former city hall annex, now the Courtyard Marriott, during Saturday's light snow

My hotel, a former city hall annex, now the Courtyard Marriott, during Saturday’s light snow



I drove up to Philadelphia on Thursday, checked into my hotel near the Pennsylvania Convention Center, and unpacked. I was stunned to realize I’d left my makeup bag hanging on a hook on the back of my bathroom door AT HOME! So, I immediately got a mini-tour of the surrounding area by heading for the nearest drugstore on foot for new makeup. (Of course, I’d bought several new makeup items before I left, so I kicked myself for the lapse in packing!). Since I’d been driving all day, it felt good to walk around for a bit, and fortunately, that was the worst thing that happened on my trip, so no harm done in the long run!

On Friday morning, I enjoyed participating in my first unconference, where I enjoyed a lively conversation about open access, data management, and electronic resources around the table I chose to join. For lunch, I attended an ALA “Dine Around Philadelphia” event hosted by one of my former classmates and NCCU SLIS alum, Ta-Shire Tribbett. It was a lot of fun catching up with her and meeting several new people at El Vez, a cute Mexican restaurant within walking distance of the convention center. There were three other library students at the table, as well as three professional librarians, so we enjoyed comparing notes.

One of Saturday’s highlight was attending two committee meetings, which sounds crazy, I know! Both committees are under the umbrella of the Library Leadership and Management Association (LLAMA), a division of the American Library Association. One was the Membership Committee, where we discussed our¬† Sunday night Happy Hour in Philly, and plans for another Happy Hour at Annual ’14 in Las Vegas. I’ve had several conference call meetings with this group, so it was great to put faces with voices in that meeting. The other committee meeting was the LLAMA/SASS (Systems and Services Section) Technical Services and Systems Committee. There, I volunteered to write a chapter for the committee’s upcoming book for new supervisors in Technical Services departments! Once I finish and get feedback and editing, the book will go to the next phase of publication. I’ll keep you posted on that!

I also enjoyed an interesting session on¬†“Core Competencies for Electronic Resources Librarians.” Saturday afternoon. One of my professional goals is to get more involved in e-books, so I got a lot out of it.

Chinatown in Philadelphia

Chinatown in Philadelphia

Saturday night, I joined a different group of librarians at another “Dine Around Philadelphia” event, dinner in Chinatown at Penang, which was very enjoyable. The food portions were generous, especially for the price. I didn’t know anyone in this dinner group before we arrived, so it was fun getting to know some new people over a yummy dinner.¬† I enjoyed seeing a little bit of Chinatown, Philadelphia style, too.

Sunday morning, I attended a program on metadata, and followed it with a Hack Library School lunch meetup, which was fun! After lunch, I joined a session in progress, but checked the conference schedule on my iPhone, and noticed that my cousin, Christina Baker Kline, was scheduled to start signing copies of her latest book, Orphan Train, at the HarperCollins booth in 15 minutes, so I scooted out of the session and surprised Christina in the exhibit hall! We enjoyed catching up over Diet Cokes at the Marriott after her book-signing was over.

From there, I joined the LLAMA Membership Committee (one of my committee assignments for this year) at our Midwinter Happy Hour at Smokin’ Betty’s, another cute restaurant within walking distance of the convention center. About 30 people showed up for the Happy Hour, which we counted as a fun success, and several of us stayed on for dinner.¬† (I had their Marinated Grilled Vegetable Sandwich, which was great!)

All in all, it was a really good conference! I wish I could’ve attended more sessions, and I play tourist in Philadelphia as much as I wanted to, but it’s challenging to fit all the “wanna-dos” in. I’m definitely looking forward to ALA Annual in Las Vegas this coming June!

Posted in ALA, Books, Midwinter, Networking, Professional Development | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Another Semester in the Books

I’m sitting at my desk this evening with a cup of steaming Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride tea next to me (thanks, Lisa!), looking around at a slightly less messy desk. It’s finally sunk in that another semester is over! Yay!

It was a challenging semester in several ways. The course I took, Intro to Digital Libraries, was one of the more time-consuming classes I’ve taken so far. (I learned a lot, and it was worth it, but in the middle of it all, I was caught with a deer-in-headlights look on occasion!) In scarier news (pardon the pun), my dad had a stroke on Halloween, so my sister and I spent a lot of time¬† with our father over the course of November, between the hospital and rehab. (I’m happy to report that he continues to improve!) My professor, bless her, was very understanding, and gave me an extension on the individual project assignment, and the whole class an extension on our group projects.

I was finally able to clean my desk a bit this evening, and that always lifts my spirits. The hot tea helps too! Next semester, I’m taking Social Sciences Resources & Services, with only three other students so far. (In some ways, I hope the class stays small.) I’m also looking forward to attending ALA Midwinter in Philadelphia in late January! (Let me know if you’re going too!)

Christmas plans are falling into place too, and that’s definitely something to look forward to! Happy Holidays, everyone!

Posted in ALA, Class, Library School, Midwinter | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment