“Supervising” Class Makes For Interesting Day
Attendees participated in the day’s event by asking a lot of questions and providing much input into the discussion at hand. (More photos may be found at www.flickr.com/photos/nnyln)
Saranac Lake Free Library Assistant
Over 20 participants from throughout the North Country attended the Northern New York Library Network’s class, “Supervising Student Assistants and Volunteers: Hire, Train, Retain,” held June 14, 2012 at the Network in Potsdam.
Ben Hogben, Access Services Manager of the Ithaca College Library, used an interactive presentation method, and went over reasons people volunteer. He explained that understanding these principles help determine recruitment methods. He said volunteer and student assistant jobs should help build skills to be used along life’s career path.
Mr. Hogben pointed out interviews ought to include open-ended questions, and some questions are to be avoided; volunteer and student-assistant trainers should make use of different learning styles; and people need to know exactly what is expected of them, and follow-up is essential.
The day’s program also focused on the fact that documentation and on-going evaluations are crucial. Techniques for a supervisor to have “The Difficult Conversation” with a subordinate include careful listening, rephrasing, depersonalizing and achieving closure.
Volunteers can be thanked in a number of ways that are not expensive. Exit interviews with volunteers and student workers can be very helpful in planning future recruitment and training.
The Library Assistants Committee assisted NNYLN Regional Service Coordinator Bridget Doyle with planning for the information-packed conference. The Committee welcomes new members. Contact NNYLN Director John Hammond for more information.
Historical Homes Information Available Online
John B. Andrews House in Massena
(Photo by David Lane)
A collection of articles featuring 730 Old Houses of the North Country throughout Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties is now part of the NewYorkHeritage.org site (www.newyorkheritage.org/nc-wat.php).
The stories include such information as who lived in the homes, where they are located, when they were constructed, and their overall history.
The articles were written and photos taken byDavid Lane and were published in the Watertown Daily Times between 1941-1956. Copies are housed in the Roswell P. Flower Memorial Library’s Genealogy Department in Watertown.
“A frequent reference question that we get at Flower Library is ‘Tell me about my house.’ Unfortunately, we had few resources available to find information about old houses in the North Country,” noted Flower Memorial Library Reference Librarian Yvonne Reff. “The resources that we had were poorly indexed and only available in the library.
“Now we have online access to this information and it is searchable! No more trying to use a rudimentary, hand created index and telling people they will have to come to the library. Now we can help patrons find information about their houses easily and quickly. And the patrons can search without having to come into the library,” she said.
Articles may be searched by key words, or may be viewed in chronological order by a direct link that is provided.
“One of the most beautiful houses in the North Country is the Georgian colonial native limestone house of Mrs. Russell H. Andrew at 80 Andrews street, in the village of Massena,” the article on the photo shown here states.
“It was constructed about 1833 from stone quarried from the bed of the Grass river for John B. Andrews, one of Massena's earliest prominent residents. In this respect it was like the house erected at practically the same time on Phillips street for Benjamin Phillips, also one of Massena's earliest prominent citizens. In both cases the streets were named for these settlers,” the story continued.
SUNY Plattsburgh Involved In Archival Contest Winning Essay
Julie Dresser, a teacher’s aide from Sycamore, Illinois, was the winner of the I Found It In The Archives! contest sponsored by the Society of American Archivists (SAA). SAA asked archives users to submit essays or videos detailing their “discoveries” in the archives. Ms. Dresser’s essay described how a trip to the Special Collections in the Benjamin F. Feinberg Library at State University of New York at Plattsburgh helped her discover priceless letters from her fourth-great grandmother.
“I’ve discovered wonderful things in many different archives across the United States, but these letters, with their first-hand accounts of different events, are my greatest of the great,” Ms. Dresser said.
Dresser’s entry bested seven other finalists in the contest in which the public voted for the winner. More than 8,400 votes were cast. To read her winning essay, visit www2.archivists.org/node/15680.
“I was so surprised and more than a little overwhelmed when the Society of American Archivists called and said I had won the I Found It In The Archives! contest,” Dresser said. “What a great honor. Nothing makes me happier than when I am digging through primary documents.”
Penfield Library Awards Faculty Research Grants
This year SUNY Oswego’s Penfield Library created the Lake Effect Faculty Research Grant Initiative. Grants in the amount of $350 each were awarded to nine faculty members in May 2012 to support research interests or program/course curriculum needs of the students in their courses.
Faculty were asked to write a short rationale for the material requested. The material purchased will be a part of the Penfield collection and will serve to enhance the chosen subject areas.
2012 Faculty Grant recipients are:
- Leigh Bacher – Cognitive Development (Psychology)
- Bill Goffe – Teaching and Learning in Economics (Economics)
- Bonita Hampton – Women and AIDS in Kenya (Curriculum & Instruction)
- Virginia MacEntee – Children’s Literature (Curriculum & Instruction)
- Richard Metzgar – Art and Craft (Art)
- Marla Perkins – Language (Linguistics)
- Tania Ramalho – First International Conference on Africa (Curriculum & Instruction)
- Bennet Schaber – Occupy Wall Street (English)
- Roger Taylor - Cognitive Development (Psychology)
People In The News
Franklin-Essex-Hamilton School Library Director Donna Hanus retired on June 30, 2012. She became the first director of the System in 1985, following the creation of School Library Systems by the New York State legislature. Prior to that she worked for 10 years as the high school librarian for the Brushton-Moira Central School District.
Mary Bucher Passes
The NNYLN received word that Mary L. Bucher passed away on June 6, 2012.
Ms. Bucher earned her bachelor’s degree at SUNY Oswego, a master’s degree from SUNY Albany and another master’s degree from St. Lawrence University. She worked 35 years as a librarian at SUNY Canton. She was the secretary for the Canton Chapter of United University Professions.
She enjoyed spending the holidays with her family and traveled the world in her free time.
On-Line Training With lynda.com
The NNYLN has purchased a subscription from lynda.com to provide online technical training to library staff in the region.
lynda.com offers over 1,300 online classes, including online training for software from Microsoft, Adobe, Corel, Photoshop, InDesign, Apple, Autodesk, Blackboard, and Joomla, and well as many open source packages such as Drupal.
Other available topics include presentations, social media, business skills, and many others. To see a complete list, visit lynda.com
Staff members may register online through the NNYLN to receive an activation code from lynda.com via email.
For more information, click on the lynda.com icon under “Quick Links” on the Network's home page.
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