UNCG Virtual Town Hall Meeting Tonight (10/10)!

UNCG LIS community and friends are invited to the Fall town hall meeting, which will be held virtually and face-to-face.
Town Hall meeting, 5-7 pm, SOEB 401
– an opportunity to hear about developments in the UNCG LIS Department and meet new faculty member Rebecca Morris.  All are invited.  LIS faculty and Chair will be present to answer questions.

For future activities, see events calendar: http://lis.uncg.edu/events/
and the list of Important Dates: http://lis.uncg.edu/about-us/important-dates/

Volunteer at the UNCG LIS/LISAA table at NCLA!

LISAA will be sharing a booth with the UNCG LIS Department this year at NCLA! We’re looking for alumni volunteers to help staff the table. If you would like to volunteer for a shift at the booth, please contact Beth Martin at semarti2@uncg.edu. If you can’t volunteer, please come by and say hello! We can’t wait to see you there!

And, the official program is now available at the 2013 NCLA Conference website: http://nclaonline.org/2013-conference

Be sure to check out our list of alumni presentations in the previous post!

It’s here! The 2012 Annual Alumni Luncheon is TOMORROW!

That’s right! Tomorrow at 12pm the UNCG Alumni House is the place to be for UNCG LIS Alumni! Brian Sturm from UNC will be our featured Cora Paul Bomar Lecturer, Bea Kovacs will be there to give out the Kovacs Award for Outstanding Alumni Achievement, delicious food will be served, and you’ll have a chance to meet and mingle with fellow alumni! 

Cost is $25 for alumni (and other non-students) and $10 for current LIS students. RSVP to ehsapienza@gmail.com.

Hope to see you all tomorrow! 

Sponsor an LIS Student for this year’s luncheon!

Please take note of the following announcement from Dr. Clara Chu, Chair of the Department of Library and Information Studies at UNCG:

Dear LIS alumni and friends,

The UNCG LIS Alumni Association is proud to continue its tradition of “Sponsor a Graduate to the LIS Alumni Luncheon” and the LIS faculty are happy to participate in sponsoring an LIS graduate of August & December 2011 and May 2012.  LIS alumni and friends are invited to sponsor one or more 2011-12 UNCG LIS graduates ($10/ticket) to this year’s UNCG LIS Alumni Luncheon taking place Saturday, March 31st, noon, in the Virginia Dare room at the Alumni House at UNC-Greensboro.

Please contact Erin Sapienza (ehsapienza@gmail.com) to sponsor a graduate and/or to rsvp for the event ($25 for alumni and friends and $10 for current MLIS students).  Registration begins at 11:30 with the luncheon and business meeting at Noon.  Free parking is available near the Alumni House and behind the Weatherspoon Art Gallery http://www.uncg.edu/online_map/.

I look forward to seeing many of you on the 31st.

Best regards,

The 2012 Alumni Luncheon is almost here!

That’s right! The event you wait for all year long is coming up in just a few weeks! This year’s luncheon will be held on March 31, 2012 @ 12:00pm in the Virginia Dare Room of the UNCG Alumni House. This year the Cora Paul Bomar lecture on Librarianship will be delivered by Dr. Brian Sturm. Brian received his MLS in 1991 and my PhD in 1998, both from Indiana University in Bloomington, IN. He served as the assistant director of the Indiana University Library School on the South Bend campus. He is an Associate Professor at UNC SILS and teaches classes at SILS on storytelling. He has been a storyteller for over 12 years. His talk is entitled “Creating and Marketing Immersive Libraries.” We will also be presenting the Kovacs Award for Outstanding Alumni Achievement to this year’s deserving alumnus. Alumni, family, friends, and LIS faculty and students are all welcome to attend!

Tickets are $25 for alumni (and other non-students) and $10 for current LIS students. Please RSVP to ehsapienza@gmail.com. We hope you will join us on March 31!

Check out some of the highlights from last year’s luncheon here and here.

Featured Alumna: Ginny Lewis

Ginny Lewis, UNCG LIS Alumna

Photo courtesy of Ginny Lewis

This month’s featured alumna is Ginny Lewis! Ginny graduated from the UNCG LIS program in May of 2003 and currently works as the Division Manager for Research Services at High Point Public Library. Read on to learn more about Ginny!

  • Had you worked in other areas before entering library school?

I am a registered radiologic technologist  and worked in healthcare for 20+ years prior to  obtaining  my LIS degree at UNCG.

  • What was your first library job?

I worked as an Information Desk assistant at Jackson Library at UNCG while obtaining my graduate degree.  That was a wonderful experience and I thoroughly enjoyed working in an academic library.

  • What do you remember most about your time in the UNCG LIS program?

I absolutely loved working at Jackson Library. I learned so much and enjoyed working with staff,  students and the general public.  I also  enjoyed the amount of access I had to professors. They were generous with their time and expertise in teaching me throughout  my time as a grad student at UNCG.

  • What is your current position and what does it entail?

I am the division manager for Research Services at High Point Public Library in High Point , NC.  I manage five professional staff members and five paraprofessional staff members in my division. I am responsible for collection development  for nonfiction in print and e-content.  I produce and manage line item budgeting for my division, procure electronic database subscriptions for the library, procurement of periodicals for the library’s periodicals collection, oversee management for the library’s public computing center and I also oversee stacks management for both reference and circulating nonfiction collections.

  • Do you have any projects going on that you’re particularly excited about?

I am a member of the library’s leadership team so I  participate in  some of  decision making processes for our library’s initiatives and action plans. I am also involved as a team member in e-content procurement  for our library. I am learning lots of new things pertaining to e-content. I enjoy learning  about new technologies and computer equipment. I am also involved in  a project  that encourages LIS students to volunteer in our library  to gain experience. I volunteered  at Greensboro Public Library for several months after I graduated in 2003.  My volunteerism at the Reference Desk at Central Branch  of GPL  enabled me to obtain my first library position at GPL.  That investment paid off with a professional position at HPPL.  I learned so much, and was mentored by wonderful staff members at GPL through the years.  I participate as a mentor for NCLA as a result.  I love talking to and working with librarians and LIS students.

  • How do you feel the profession has changed since you graduated from UNCG?

Trends  in mobile smart phone technology, e-content, and cloud computing  are keeping me busy learning  new ways to provide services and resources to the community our library serves. I am having  lots of fun learning   about all these new ways to deliver services and content  to the people we serve in High Point.  I also  have noticed  that we  are using more  technology to do outreach in our community.  We are making connections in the community in order to advocate for our public library as well as  educate the community  about what we can provide.  We are  having an impact on the quality of life for the general public as well as enhancing small  business interests, entrepreneurs, and  non-profit agencies. Connecting with interested stakeholders in our community has opened my eyes  to how valuable public libraries can be.  I am very excited about the changes I have seen in  my profession since I graduated in 2003.

First Featured Alumna of 2012: Rebecca Tolley-Stokes!

The featured alumni series took a break this past fall, but it has returned for 2012 to continue to feature our fantastic alumni! Our first alumna for 2012 is Rebecca Tolley-Stokes. Rebecca graduated from the UNCG MLIS program in 1996. She is currently an Associate Professor and Librarian at East Tennessee State University but has worked in public, special and academic libraries in her library career. She recently co-edited two books, both of which have UNCG connections – Mentoring in Librarianship: Essays on Working with Adults and Students to Further the Profession, which includes a chapter by UNCG librarian Keith Phelan Gorman, and The Generation X Librarian: Essays on Leadership, Technology, Pop Culture, Social Responsibility and Professional Identity, which includes a chapter by UNCG librarian and alum Lynda Kellam and UNCG alum Kathy Shields. Read on to learn more about Rebecca!

  • Had you worked in other areas before entering library school?

Yes, I worked at a call center, as a bookseller several times at different stores, as an art teach and arts & crafts director for a summer playground program operated by my city’s parks and recreation department, as a fresh and frozen seafood processor when I lived in Alaska, and then as an historical interpreter at Rocky Mount before almost exclusively working in libraries.

  • What was your first library job?

I volunteered at Johnson City Public Library (TN) when I was 13 or 14 and spent most of my time in the children’s department. The Children’s librarian at that time had me clean the picture books’ covers, and cut our felt pieces for story times. My first paying job was also at Johnson City Public Library after I had decided that I wanted to go to library school, but before I had earned my bachelor’s degree. Given my prior volunteer work , when I approached the head of circulation about the possibility of part-time work, I was s shoe-in and then worked as a page for two years prior to attending UNCG.

  • What do you remember most about your time in the UNCG LIS program?

Many fond memories of the semesters I studied at UNCG’s LIS program readily come to my mind. I can’t decide whether the people or the information was most valuable, because both were—and still are—so important to my professional identity.  I became a librarian because I loved books and information and libraries as place; they offered sanctuary to me when I was bullied in junior high. But learning the philosophy and history of our profession and what values we hold dear—like freedom of information, intellectual freedom, and equity of access— correspond with my democratic ideals. My professors made lasting impressions on me:  Dr. Kovacs and Dr. Carmichael taught me so much about being a librarian. The friends I made were lasting and whether I run into classmates at ALA, see each other at weddings, chat on Facebook , or plan weekend getaways, I’m grateful for the power of bricks-and-mortar UNCG that forged our friendship.

  • What is your current position and what does it entail?

Since 2009 I’ve served as the faculty outreach librarian at the Charles C. Sherrod Library at East Tennessee State University which entails a little bit of everything, really: Reference-by-appointment and library instruction. I coordinate library instruction for the public services team. We licensed bePress this fall and I’ll work directly with faculty to help them with Selected Works. Our systems librarian and I are writing our institutional repository policies, taxonomies, etc. Finally seeing this IR come to fruition is exciting since I’ve dreamed of nothing other than it for the past two years.

  • Do you have any projects going on that you’re particularly excited about?

Other than the IR I mentioned above, my second co-edited book was published earlier this month Mentoring in Librarianship: Essays on Working with Adults and Students to Further the Profession and one of the contributors, Keith Phelan Gorman works at Jackson Library, UNCG.

  • How do you feel the profession has changed since you graduated from UNCG?

Librarianship becomes more exciting with each passing year. Library school curricula amaze me. I envy what students learn and wish I could return and upgrade my skill set.  But that doesn’t really answer the question, does it? My observations are not very original. The rate of change that librarians experience in our profession nowadays is phenomenal. Keeping up with all the trends that may affect library services or programs seems barely possible. Perhaps when I earned my degree it was easier to be complacent in your professional development, but today constant improvement or lifelong learning so that librarians retain a competitive edge is key, especially given the rate at which libraries close and librarians’ jobs may be in peril.

  • Anything else you’d like to say to the UNCG Alumni?

Let your curiosity and passion drive you. Seek phenomenal mentors. Take risks that force you out of your comfort zone or you’ll never learn what you’re capable of professionally.

Many thanks to Rebecca for taking time out to answer our questions in the midst of teaching her first Intro to Women’s Studies course this past fall!

Do you know an alumnus that you think we should feature? Email Lynda Kellam at lmkellam@uncg.edu or Kathy Shields at kshields@highpoint.edu with the information!