Week in Review – 23 August 2013

Special Collections and Archives Consolidation Move is Complete

After more than three weeks of moving, we are very pleased that the great library collection shuffle of 2013 has drawn to a close, reuniting all Special Collections and Archives materials under one roof in Central Area for the first time since 1989. In addition, all general collection materials are now housed in Jefferson Hall. This significant undertaking came to successful conclusion thanks to our Special Collections & Archives staff who orchestrated a multi-phase project plan to shuffle materials in an out of three different facilities, and to our moving partners Clancy Moving Systems of Patterson, New York.

This move was originally scheduled to happen one year ago following the renovation of the old library space. The project plan had called for Special Collections and Archives to reoccupy a large section of the fourth floor and fourth floor mezzanine. That space would include collection storage, patron reading space, and staff office and workspaces. In the summer of 2011, the original plan was altered due to space constraints required for academic instruction. When Bartlett Hall North (the old library) came back online in January 2012, the library space was repurposed to support temporary classrooms in the collection space, and as office/meeting space for science department staff and faculty. This arrangement was scheduled to continue through full completion of the Bartlett Hall renovation in 2016.

Efforts to remodel the Visitor’s Center intervened however, and made it imperative that we relocate all our materials stored in the Library Annex (Visitor’s Center) to other locations. After considering remote off-site storage, and other temporary arrangements, we made the decision to move ahead with the consolidation into the collection spaces of Bartlett Hall North this summer.

We now have much easier access to all research materials, and will now also be able to expedite work to review little-used materials from the general collection that were held in the Library Annex. Overall, this is a big step forward for our collections as they are now in the permanent homes.

The moving work however is not quite complete. While our collections are now properly situated, we have not yet taken occupancy of our research and staff office spaces in Bartlett Hall North. Those rooms will continue to be used for science faculty and staff until the Bartlett Hall renovation project is complete in 2016. Until then, researchers will continue to use the reading room on the third floor of Jefferson Hall.

With the move complete, we are beginning to reestablish services for Special Collections & Archives. We expect full service to resume by early September. We plan to provide an opportunity for all library staff to tour the new spaces during our September staff meeting and will look forward to the much better access to our materials.

USMA Library Events

The events below will likely affect USMA Library and Jefferson Hall operations in the coming week.

Date USMA O/DEAN USMA Library Jefferson Hall Hours
23 August 2013
 Ring Weekend Week in Review 0700-1630
24 August 2013
Ring Weekend Soccer Ring Ceremony 0900-1700
25 August 2013
26 August 2013
27 August 2013
Division Heads Philosophy Forum 0700-2245
28 August 2013
 Dean’s Staff Meeting 0700-2245
29 August 2013
30 August 2013
Beat Morgan State / Class of 1988 Reunion 0700-1530

USMA Library Metrics

USMA Library tracks a number of key statistics to measure service levels. These are their stories …

Access Services
Items Charged Out 432 232 221
Gate Count N/A N/A N/A N/A
Administrative Services
DV Tours 0 0 0 0
Significant Events Hosted 0 0 0 2
Events/Meetings Attended 0 15 18 22
Information Gateway
Reference Questions 5 7 8 8
Library Instruction Sessions 0 0 0 0
Cadets Attending Sessions 0 0 0 0
Materials Processing
Items Added – Books 74 16 17 26
Items Added – Digital 0 0 0 0
Items Added – GovDocs 11 112 62 35
Items Added – Other 2 0 0 40
Continuing Resource Check-Ins 89 109 152 58
Special Collections & Archives
Reference Inquiries 0 0 0 0
Research Visits < 1 hour 0 0 0 0
Research Visits < 1 day 0 0 0 0
Research Visits > 1 day 0 0 0 0
Instruction Sessions 0 0 0 0
Cadets Taught 0 0 0 0
Systems Management
Library Home Page Visits 866 818 822 1,589
LibGuides Visits 266 231 184 247
Digital Collections Visits 203 117 105 114
Facebook Visits 13 8 16 19
Public Printer Prints 13 25 0 6,448
Public Printer Copies 61 4 0 75
Public Printer Scans 27 20 4 14

Food for Thought

A few quotations from the past week about libraries, information, technology, and the future

  • “On the surface, Facebook provides an invaluable resource for fulfilling the basic human need for social connection,” social psychologist Ethan Kross told The Telegraph. ”But rather than enhance well-being, we found that Facebook use predicts the opposite result – it undermines it.” In other words, the more people used Facebook, the more miserable they grew.” – Study: Facebook is making users miserable – Yahoo! News
  • “While it’s not commonly discussed on the Hill, the government actually stands to make an enormous profit on the president’s new federal student-loan system, an estimated $184 billion over 10 years, a boondoggle paid for by hyperinflated tuition costs and fueled by a government-sponsored predatory-lending program that makes even the most ruthless private credit-card company seem like a “Save the Panda” charity. Why is this happening? The answer lies in a sociopathic marriage of private-sector greed and government force that will make you shake your head in wonder at the way modern America sucks blood out of its young.” – The College-Loan Scandal: Matt Taibbi on the Ripping Off of Young America | Politics News | Rolling Stone
  • “Remember the get-to-know-me chat of a first date or that final (good or bad) conversation with someone you knew for years? Chances are, as time has passed, your memory of those moments has changed. Did you nervously twitch and inarticulately explain your love when you asked your spouse to marry you? Or, as you recall it, did you gracefully ask for her hand, as charming as Cary Grant? Thanks to our near-endless access to digital recording devices, the less-than-Hollywood version of you will be immortalized on the home computer, or stored for generations in some digital computing cloud.” – What’s Lost When Everything Is Recorded – NYTimes.com
  • “The job I’m trying to get now requires me to know how to operate a computer,” said Elmer Griffin, 70, a retired truck driver from Bessemer, Ala., who was recently rejected for a job at an auto-parts store because he was unable to use the computer to check the inventory. “I wish I knew how, I really do. People don’t even want to talk to you if you don’t know how to use the Internet.” – Most of U.S. Is Wired, but Millions Aren’t Plugged In – NYTimes.com
  • “The proportions of American undergraduates who received federal financial aid (57 percent) or at least some form of financial aid (71 percent) in 2011-12 both rose considerably from 2007-8, when the proportions were 47 percent and 66 percent, respectively, a new federal report shows.” – Majority of Students Now Have Federal Aid, U.S. Study Shows | Inside Higher Ed
  • “I had an interesting conversation with a faculty member last week that went something like this: “Brian, I want you to know that it’s getting harder for me to get students to use the library— especially the databases— anything beyond three clicks is just too many.” In some disciplines this would not really shock me, but it was a historian. This is someone who is passionate about the library. This is someone who advocates for primary resources and through research. This is someone—who from what I can tell—is a very sophisticated database user. If our super users are frustrated with database interfaces – what does that mean? Many of us spend a lot of time promoting library resources to students, but if faculty stop encouraging (or requiring) usage—what then?” – The-3-Click-Dilemma: are library databases nearing the tipping point of obsolescence? – The Ubiquitous Librarian – The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • “Even in the Internet age, when data sources like Twitter posts and Google search queries are supposed to tip us off to outbreaks as they happen, one restrictive government can still put the whole world in danger by clamming up. That’s because the most important factor in controlling epidemics isn’t the quality of our medicine. It’s the quality of our information.” – Censorship Doesn’t Just Stifle Speech — It Can Spread Disease | Wired Opinion | Wired.com

Excerpted from Infoneer Pulse, a digital commonplace book curated by Christopher Barth.