Meet your Hamersly staff: Dr. Allen McKiel

Each term, we introduce you to a few of the people who work to make Hamersly your favorite place on campus to do research, study, print your papers, meet with a group, or simply kick back and read in a quiet place.

This week, meet Dr. Allen McKiel, our Dean of the Library:

Dean McKielWhat do you do in the library? As dean of the library I am responsible to the university through the Academic Vice President for the administration of the library. My responsibilities include overseeing the library’s budget, coordinating its planning, operations, and personnel, and acting as liaison to the Academic Vice President and his management team.

How long have you worked in the library? A little over 7 years

What is your education and professional background? My undergraduate is in English Literature from Purdue University; the Master is in Library and Information Technology from Indiana University; and the Ph.D. is in Higher Education Administration from Indiana State University.

My first professional job after my Master was as a programmer for a large software development firm in Los Angeles, CA. Libraries were not hiring at the time because Proposition 13 had destroyed the tax base in California. Programming eventually took me back to libraries with programming jobs at companies that serve libraries, OCLC and then Notice at Northwestern University. Stepping out of the library realm, I worked for a few years as the Senior Systems Analyst for Planning at the Indiana Toll Road. From there I found my current career as an academic librarian, first as the Director of Libraries for Region 2 of Ivy Tech State College, then as Director of Libraries for Northeastern State University in Oklahoma, finally landing here in the most delightful of all my professional experiences at Western Oregon University.

What is one thing about the library you think everyone should know? Libraries are the collective efforts of society to provide equitable access to its intellectual and cultural heritage. They will continue indefinitely into the future albeit in forms integral to society’s evolving information and communication infrastructure.

What is the last good book you read? Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paulo Freire.

What was your favorite book as a kid? The Hardy Boys series by Franklin W. Dixon.

Tell us a fun fact about you! I have a 2-year-old grandson that loves anything with wheels. He goes “beep, beep, beep!” when he backs up.

New Winter Term exhibits @ Hamersly

The Hamersly Library cordially invites you to a reception for the winter 2015 exhibits, Wednesday, January 14, 2015, 4:30p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Light refreshments will be provided! Our exhibits include:

Winter 2015 exhibit - Boycott! The Art of Economic ActivismBOYCOTT! The Art of Economic Activism
The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) and the Center for the Study of Political Graphics (CSPG) have created a traveling poster exhibition highlighting diverse historical boycott movements from the 1950s to the present. Boycott! The Art of Economic Activism features 58 posters from more than 20 boycotts, including the Montgomery Bus Boycott, United Farm Workers’ Grape and Lettuce Boycott, divestment from South Africa to protest Apartheid, boycotts of corporations using child labor and sweatshops, the Palestinian call for Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS), and many others. 2nd floor Gallery ~ January 5th – February 15th only

 

 

Winter 2015 exhibit - Reverberations of the Great WarReverberations of the Great War
2014-2018 marks the centennial of the Great War, World War I, “The War to End All Wars,” where the methods and weaponry of modern warfare were born and tens of millions of people were killed or maimed. The event destroyed empires and strengthened alliances and animosities that shaped the 20th century. In the view of many historians and artists, the war left the world’s people shaken and exhausted, cynical, and less certain of the future. Included in the exhibit are poems from the era and family histories selected and compiled by Dr. Henry Hughes, as well as artifacts and student soldier letters from the WOU Archives.
3rd floor galleries ~ January 5th – March 20th

Meet your Hamersly staff: Stewart Baker

Each term, we introduce you to a few of the people who work to make Hamersly your favorite place on campus to do research, study, print your papers, meet with a group, or simply kick back and read in a quiet place.

This week, meet Stewart Baker, our Systems & Institutional Repository Librarian. He was an integral part of the team that made the switch to our new library system, Primo, over the summer. And if you take classes in Computer Science, Social Sciences, Modern Languages, or Philosophy your class may get a visit from Stewart at some point.  Here’s more about him:

Stewart BakerWhat do you do in the library? I work on our website- and catalog-related things, including the recent migration to our new library system, Primo. I also provide reference services and teach library instruction sessions.

How long have you worked in the library? Since late October, 2013.

What is your education and professional background? I have a BA and MA in literature (with a focus on Medieval Europe and critical theory) and an MLIS in library science. I had a long and varied undergraduate career, taking courses in computer science, graphic design, art history, philosophy, and linguistics. Prior to starting work at WOU last October, I worked for 5 years as a reference and web services librarian at California State University, Dominguez Hills, located on the outskirts of the urban sprawl that is Los Angeles.

What is one thing about the library you think everyone should know? Librarians like answering questions, anything from the ones that seem too easy to ask about to the ones that seem impossible and weird. Please bring them all to us!

What is the last good book you read? I’m always reading, so there are too many to list. The last book I read which I really couldn’t put down was Ha Jin’s In the Pond.

What was your favorite book as a kid? As a younger kid, anything by Roald Dahl. As a teen, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, parts of which I can still quote from memory. (“Life? Don’t talk to me about life!”)

Tell us a fun fact about you! I am semi-fluent in Japanese, and spent half a year living and studying in Japan in 2005.

Scary books for Halloween

Does your idea of a good Halloween include curling up with a scary book? If so, this list is for you! Here are some of the books we have right here in Hamersly that will give you a fright. Happy Halloween!

Doctor Sleep “Stephen King returns to the characters and territory of one of his most popular novels ever, The Shining, in this instantly riveting novel about the now middle-aged Dan Torrance (the boy protagonist of The Shining) and the very special twelve-year-old girl he must save from a tribe of murderous paranormals.” – Goodreads
Doctor Sleep by Stephen King. Call Number: REC KIN (1st floor)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Skeleton Crew A collection of short, but no less terrifying, stories. Ideal for reading aloud to scare your roommates.
Skeleton Crew by Stephen King.Call Number: PS3561.I483 S55 1986 (3rd floor)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dracula If you’re looking for a more old-school Halloween experience, give this classic tale a try. “Jonathan Harker, incarcerated in a Transylvanian castle, has an alluring but terrifying dream of three women, eager to prey upon him. His host and jailer is none other than Count Dracula, or Nosferatu, the Un-Dead, controller of the wolves.” – Goodreads
Dracula by Bram Stoker.Call Number: PR6037.T617 D7 2011 (3rd floor) or as an eBook.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bird Box Most people ignored the outrageous reports on the news. But they became too frequent, they became too real. And soon, they began happening down the street. Then the Internet died. The television and radio went silent. The phones stopped ringing. And we couldn’t look outside anymore. - Goodreads
Bird Box by Josh Malerman.Call Number: REC MAL (1st floor).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hound of the Baskervilles Another timeless classic – short and perfect for reading aloud. “Holmes and Watson are faced with their most terrifying case yet. The legend of the devil-beast that haunts the moors around the Baskerville families home warns the descendants of that ancient clan never to venture out in those dark hours when the power of evil is exalted. Now, the most recent Baskerville, Sir Charles, is dead and the footprints of a giant hound have been found near his body. Will the new heir meet the same fate?” – Goodreads
The Complete Sherlock Holmes – The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle.Call Number: PR4620.A5 .M67 1953 (3rd floor).

 

 

 

 

 

Tales A collection of stories by the legendary horror writer H.P. Lovecraft. Prepare to face terrors beyond your wildest imaginings…
Tales by H.P. Lovecraft.Call Number: PS3523.O833 A6 2005 (3rd floor).

Meet your Hamersly staff: Valerie Latham

Each term, we introduce you to a few of the people who work to make Hamersly your favorite place on campus to do research, study, print your papers, meet with a group, or simply kick back and read in a quiet place.

This week, meet Valerie Latham. If you’re a night owl, you’ve probably seen her at the Information desk where she works during the term until the library closes (usually at midnight!) She also works behind the scenes to make sure the book you’re looking for is put on the shelf in the right place so that it’s there when you need it.

Val_profileWhat do you do in the library? I supervise the Stacks Department and work the evening shifts at the Reference Desk until midnight.

How long have you worked in the library? Six years.

What is your education and professional background? I started at Hamersly in the Library Administration Office as an Office Specialist II, and then I moved to the Stacks Department in Public Services at the same time as continuing my college education.

What is one thing about the library you think everyone should know? That the library has so many useful resources for studying. Take full advantage of the Reference desk, Information desk and the Checkout desk for any questions. We have our Chat that is available and we have librarians here during the day that would benefit you greatly. Come and visit us, we welcome you any time and any day! We are here for YOU!

What is the last good book you read? Divergent by Veronica Roth.

What was your favorite book as a kid? The Hiding Place by Corrie Boom.

Tell us a fun fact about you! I love to read textbooks, history books especially. And I love dogs and cats. I also change my hair a lot, so you might or might not recognize me. It’s a girl thing!

New students: learn about your WOU library this week!

Welcome!Welcome to campus, new students! As a part of New Student Week, we are offering several opportunities for you to learn more about your library. We hope to see you at one of these sessions (see your New Student Week book for full descriptions):

Reading, Research, Writing, and ‘Rithmetic – What the WOU library can do for you
Mon. 9/22, 11:30am-12:30pm, Ackerman 141 & Wed. 9/24, 12:45-1:45pm, Ackerman 141
The library is about more than just books (although we have those too)! Come learn all about what we can do for you while you’re here at WOU. Snacks will be served!

Insider Library Tours – for students by students
Tues. 9/23, 1:00-4:00pm, Hamersly Library & Fri. 9/26, 9:00am-4:00pm, Hamersly Library
Get the inside scoop on the library and how you can use it to your best advantage during your time at WOU. Participate and you will be entered to win a prize!

New library system is live

Primo logoIt’s here! Our new library system is now up and running. The biggest change for you, as a library user, will likely be the new online search interface called Primo, which you will use to locate library materials within Hamersly Library and at our Summit partner libraries.

Find Primo at the top of the library homepage and try it out. If you find any bugs or have questions, please let us know, and know that we will be working in the weeks to come to smooth out the bumps that inevitably come with a large-scale project like this one.

Speaking of which…here are a few things to keep in mind as you begin to use the new catalog in these early days: 

More about new library system

  • For quick answers to the most commonly asked questions about the new system (such as, why did the library make this change?, what is this thing called Primo?, what about my favorite database, has it changed?) take a look at our FAQ. We are continuing to add to this as we encounter new questions and issues.
  • WorldCat, Primo, and Research databases are elements of a complete searchSearching in Primo can get you different types of results depending on the options you choose. However, even though there is a lot of material searchable in Primo, it does not include everything. Here are a couple examples:
  • Once you do an initial search in Primo and are on the results page, look to the upper-right corner for the sign-in link. We strongly encourage you to sign in as it helps you get better results and is the only way you can order books through Summit. A couple more things about the sign-in that you should know for now:
    • Once you click on the link to sign in, you will be taken to page where you can sign in with your WOU Pawprint ID and password.
    • The first time you sign in, you will be prompted to “Personalize Your Results.” In addition to selecting one or more subject areas of interest, you can indicate your “Degree,” which is simply a way of asking what part of the WOU community you belong to (student, staff member, etc.) If you are a member of faculty, the best option on the menu at this point is “Researcher.” Selecting these options will provide better search result relevance rankings for you. You can also skip this personalization, however, and/or change your settings later.

We appreciate your patience during this transition and are committed to maintaining library services at the level that you expect and require. As always, please feel free to let us know if you have any thoughts, questions, or concerns about the new system. 

Don’t pack your library books!

book dropAs the year comes to a close and you start packing up for summer, don’t forget to return any items you have borrowed from the library.

The last thing you want is to realize in July that you packed that book/DVD/CD you borrowed from Hamersly in April!

So, make a pile called “Library” while you’re packing up and bring ‘em all back before you head out for summer break. Your friendly library staff (and your bank account) will thank you.

 

The latest issue of PURE Insights is out

PURE Insights coverThe newest issue of PURE Insights is now available and includes a wide variety of pieces ranging from an international journey to help discover one’s identity, to an examination of societal perceptions of feminism, to a mathematical model for predicting award outcomes in baseball.

PURE Insights is WOU’s peer-reviewed Undergraduate Research Journal comprised of works by WOU undergraduate students working closely with a WOU faculty mentor.

Would you like to see your work or the work of one of your students in the next issue? Submissions are due by December 31, 2014 for consideration for the Spring 2015 issue.

Academic Excellence Showcase online schedule is up

Academic Excellence Showcase 2014The annual, campus-wide Academic Excellence Showcase is coming up on Thursday, May 29. Use the online schedule to help you navigate this busy day.

With the online schedule you can:

  • Browse all campus presentations or jump to a specific department
  • Search for a particular presenter by name or keyword
  • Plan your day by downloading individual session information to a Google Calendar
  • Share and promote sessions electronically via email, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media