We’re hiring: Public Services and User Experience Librarian

Samuel R. Scholes Library of Ceramics
Public Services and User Experience Librarian
The Samuel Scholes Library of Ceramics at Alfred University seeks a forward thinking, team oriented, customer service focused librarian to serve within a specialized academic library. Primarily serving undergraduate and graduate programs in Art and Design and Engineering and Science, Scholes Library also provides integrated library services with the Herrick Library at Alfred University.

Responsibilities:

The Public Services and User Experience Librarian position is a 12 month, administrative (non-tenure) position reporting to the Director of Scholes Library. This key administrative position is responsible for planning and coordinating all public facing operations including circulation, student worker hiring, training, and scheduling, all service desk operations, reference desk scheduling, user experience enhancements, and policy development.  This position also serves as assistant to the Director in reporting and providing library statistics.  Working in a fast paced, highly collaborative environment, the Public Services and User Experience Librarian serves as a key operational link to all departmental areas within Scholes Library and public face of the library as a whole.

Primary activities:

Circulation
The Public Services and User Experience Librarian is responsible for the management and maintenance of circulation in the library. This includes the systems and technologies that control circulation—such as our circulation policies and LMS (Aleph)—as well as oversight of stack maintenance, shelf-reading, and other procedures that allow circulation of the physical collection. This individual will also collect public services statistics for the Library Director.

Supervisory
The person filling this position has an important supervisory role in the Public Services department. This individual is responsible for the hiring, scheduling, training, and supervision of approximately 35 student assistants and part-time reference assistants. They also have responsibility for developing and updating procedures and manuals related to the student workers.

Administrative
The Public Services Librarian works closely with the Library Director in several areas of library administration. In an outward facing capacity, the librarian in this role communicates with patrons and other external constituencies for all operational and service matters. Within the library, they gather, report, and analyze data across all units, as well as develop internal procedures and policies as necessary.

Assessment
In concert with their role collecting statistics for the Library Director, the Public Services Librarian is responsible for facilitating assessment efforts within Scholes Library and mapping this work to relevant university-wide strategic planning as appropriate. This individual will have a significant role in library assessment, both in Scholes and across the libraries.

User Experience
The Public Services and User Experience Librarian is dedicating to improving user experience for our patrons, monitoring current public service trends, leading initiatives to develop and expand services, and assisting patrons with special requests as appropriate. They are the public face of the library, coordinating guides, signage, tech support, and other front line patron needs, as well as orientation sessions on request.

Reference/Concierge Services
As part of the outward-facing user experience aspect of this position, the Public Services Librarian is responsible for reference services in the library. They coordinate the scheduling of librarians and part-time assistants at the reference desk, participate in the reference rotation, ensure that the reference desk is staffed at all scheduled hours, and provide “concierge” service to all patrons.

Other duties:

  • Participates in professional activities, serves on appropriate campus committees, and performs other College and University duties appropriate to administrative status
  • Participates in professional development activities on and off campus
  • Participates in strategic planning for campus libraries
  • Assists with group information literacy instruction as needed
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications: An ALA accredited MLS or equivalent degree is required; experience working in Circulation, Public Services and/or Reference Services in an academic library is preferred. Very strong technology skills and experience with administrative functions of an integrated library system are highly desirable. This position requires a strong customer service orientation, as well as excellent oral and written communication and supervisory skills. Subject background or coursework in art or engineering is a plus. This is a 12-month, non-tenure position requiring professional contributions to campus committees as assigned. This position also requires professional development and participation in collaboration within the greater SUNY Library community.

To apply, please submit the following to the address below: (Email & PDF preferred). Application review begins November 16, 2015 and will continue until the position is filled.

1) A letter of introduction outlining how your qualifications and experience match this opportunity;
2) Current Resume/Vitae;
3) Names, email, and phone numbers of three appropriate references

Email materials to: humanresources@alfred.edu

or mail to:

Alfred University
Office of Human Resources
Greene Hall
Alfred, NY 14802

Alfred University, Alfred, NY, actively subscribes to a policy of equal employment opportunity, and will not discriminate against any employee, student or applicant because of race, age, sex, color, sexual orientation, gender identification or expression, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry or national origin, marital status, genetic information, military or veteran status, domestic violence victim status, criminal conviction status, political affiliation or any other characteristic protected by applicable law. Protected veterans, minorities and women are encouraged to apply.

Introducing Our Hogwarts Professors

“Yer a wizard, Harry!”

Happy birthday to Harry Potter! In Rowling’s books, July 31st, 1991 was the day that Hagrid showed up to introduce Harry to the wizarding world. It seemed like July 31st would be a fitting day to introduce you, our readers and patrons, to the professors of Hogwarts University. This is our line up of speakers for the Harry Potter’s World series, roughly in their order of appearance on the schedule. You can find the full schedule of events–including the Opening Reception and Halloween Ball!–at our site here: http://libguides.alfred.edu/harrypotter

chocolatefrogcard_johndange

 

John D’Angelo
Hogwarts House: Gryffindor
Favorite Subject: Potions
Patronus: Monkey
Potions Lecture – “What If Magic Were Real?: Modern Technology, Love Potions, Veritaserum, Elixirs of Life, Liquid Luck, and Liquid Death”
Thursday, September 3rd  • 7:30 pm  • Scholes Library Second Floor Classroom

 

chocolatefrogcard_kevinfers

 

Kevin Ferst
Hogwarts House: Hufflepuff
Favorite Subject: Herbology
Patronus: Porcupine
Herbology Lecture – “Counteracting Spells Using Classic Chinese Herbal Formulas”
Thursday, September 10th • 7:30 pm  • Herrick Library Seminar Room

 

chocolatefrogcard_cheryldem

 

Cheryld Emmons
Hogwarts House: Hufflepuff
Favorite Subjects: Herbology and Potions
Patronus: Owl or snake
Herbology Lecture – “How to Identify Plants”
Sunday, September 13th • 4:00 pm • Scholes Library Second Floor Classroom

 

chocolatefrogcard_bethjohns

 

Beth Johnson
Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw
Favorite Subject: Muggle Studies
Patronus: Rat
Muggle Studies Lecture – “But It’ll Be Fascinating to Study Muggles from the Wizarding Point of View!”
Sunday, September 20th • 4:00 pm • Herrick Library Seminar Room

 

chocolatefrogcard_daviddegr

 

David DeGraff
Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw
Favorite Subjects: Charms and Flying
Patronus: Adelie penguin
Arithmancy Lecture – “Time Turners and Time Travel are Totally True”
Sunday, September 27th • 4:00 pm  • Herrick Library Seminar Room

 

chocolatefrogcard_danielleg

 

Danielle Gagne
Hogwarts House: Slytherin (despite the sorting hat’s attempt to put her in Hufflepuff)
Favorite Subjects: Muggle Studies, Care of Magical Creatures, and Dark Arts
Patronus: Elephant
Charms Lecture – “Invisibility”
Thursday, October 1st  • 7:30 pm  • Scholes Library Second Floor Classroom

 

chocolatefrogcard_bridgetri

 

Bridget Riley
Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw
Favorite Subject: History of Magic
Patronus: Cat
History of Magic Lecture – “The Hereford Mappa Mundi: Features and Creatures”
Sunday, October 4th • 4:00 pm • Scholes Library Second Floor Classroom

 

chocolatefrogcard_lauriemcf

 

Laurie McFadden
Hogwarts House: Gryffindor
Favorite Subject: History of Magic
Patronus: Leopard
History of Magic Lecture – “If These Walls Could Talk”
Thursday, October 8th • 7:30 pm • Steinheim Castle

 

 

And, for the heck of it, and because you’ll be hearing a LOT from me in the coming Harry Potter-filled weeks/months, here’s me, your “Harry Potter’s World” coordinator and local Ravenpuff:

chocolatefrogcard_evasclipp

 

 

Eva Sclippa
Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw (with Hufflepuffian sympathies)
Favorite Subjects: Potions and Care of Magical Creatures
Patronus: Pterodactyl

“Harry Potter’s World” Coming to Scholes Library

Illustration of an alchemy workshop;  Courtesy National Library of Medicine

Illustration of an alchemy workshop;
Courtesy National Library of Medicine

I’m pleased to announce that the Scholes Library will be hosting the “Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine” exhibit from the National Library of Medicine, from August 31st through October 10th! The exhibit will be accompanied by opening and closing receptions, contests, a series of lectures and events, and much more.

The Harry Potter’s World exhibit is a traveling piece that focuses on the Renaissance traditions–scientific, philosophical, and mythological–that influenced the magic and culture in the world of Rowling’s books. Including images of primary sources on topics from alchemy to botany and magical beasts, the National Library of Medicine’s materials will be supplemented by items from our own collection. Items such as the Magiae Universalis Naturae et Artis (as seen below), a 17th century text from special collections, will be on display, tracing the relationships between alchemy, metallurgy, and chemistry.

A page from the Magiae Universalis

A page from the Magiae Universalis

We’re planning an extensive program of activities to accompany and enrich the exhibit, and there should be something for everyone. (Butterbeer! Costume contest! Music! Chocolate frogs! Prizes!) For right now, though, we’d like to reach out to all of you, our patrons and readers, and open the door to your involvement in this event.

As part of the Harry Potter’s World Exhibit, the libraries are seeking professors, staff, and community members of all walks of life to come speak on a topic related to Harry Potter–or to put on a demonstration of a relevant skill, or lead a workshop, or almost anything else you can imagine. While lectures directly about Harry Potter are obviously welcome, this concept is very flexible, and we welcome all proposals and suggestions. Maybe you want to take your inspiration from Professor Sprout’s Herbology class and talk about medicinal herbs; maybe you have some insights into the history of witchcraft in England; maybe you’re feeling crafty and want to teach people how to make their own wands. It’s all open!

Several other institutions have held lecture series while hosting this exhibit. Here are just a few of their titles, to help inspire you:

  • “Magic, Illusion, and Ghosts: The Marketing of Science and Psychotropics,” Dr. Glen Spielmans, Metropolitan State University
  • “Quick Quotes and Quibblers: The Role of the Media in the Wizarding World,” Lola Burnham, Eastern Illinois University
  • “Magic, an Anthropological Perspective,” Dr. Don Holly, Eastern Illinois University
  • “Character, Structure, Perspective…and a Castle: A Medievalist Reads Harry Potter,” Dr. David Raybin, Eastern Illinois University
  • “Immortality,” Dr. Thomas Duffy, Yale University

Obviously this is just a tiny selection of the possible range! Let your imaginations run wild; we’re eager to hear your ideas. If you have an idea, a suggestion, a question, a full-fledged proposal, or you’d just like to get involved in some way, please send me an email to sclippa@alfred.edu.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

 

Trading Cards from Harry Potter’s World Exhibition Courtesy National Library of Medicine

Trading Cards from Harry Potter’s World Exhibition
Courtesy National Library of Medicine

Mayan Hearts: New Artist’s Book

Just a quick note for those interested in artists’ books–or in Mayan art and culture, for that matter.

The Smithsonian Libraries very kindly passed on to us an extra copy of the artist’s book Mayan Hearts by Robert Laughlin, an anthropologist at the National Museum of Natural History and specialist in the Mayan language of Tzotzil.

Mayan Hearts has its origins in the 16th century, at least, when an anonymous Dominican friar created a Tzotzil-Spanish dictionary. The original dictionary was lost in 1914, when the Mexican revolutionary army used its housing library as a stable (removing and destroying the books in the process), but a copy had been made shortly beforehand on the orders of Bishop Francisco Orozco y Jimenez. Upon encountering the dictionary in the vaults of Princeton University’s library, Laughlin was struck in particular by the Tzotzil use of heart-related metaphors to discuss emotion, and sought to illustrate and compile these evocative turns of phrase.

You can encounter these Mayan metaphors and their modern illustrations–by Uruguayan artist Naul Ojeda–in our Special Collections room, along with the rest of our artists’ book collection.

MayanHearts

New books on Japanese art

Researchers, fans, and students of Japanese art and culture–rejoice! Scholes has just added 24 new books on Japanese art to the collection (with more on the way)!

This exciting addition is due to a grant secured for the library by Professor Meghen Jones and myself (Art Librarian Eva Sclippa). The grant, from the Northeast Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies, was awarded to help the Scholes Library update and expand its collection in the subject area of Japanese art. Upon arriving at Alfred University this past year, Dr. Jones quickly drew my attention to the limited scope of our offerings on the topic; upon further research, we discovered that over 75% of our books on Japanese art were published prior to 1975–the collection was desperately in need of revitalization. We’re very grateful to the NEAC for the support of this grant.

The books are currently out on the new books shelf in the lobby of the library, just as you walk in the front doors. We encourage you to browse them and see if any catch your interest; there are some really beautiful items out there! Here are some short profiles of a few especially interesting ones, selected entirely on my personal whims:

kimono


Kimono: A Modern History

Terry Satsuki Milhaupt
Reaktion Books, London, 2014
ISBN: 1780232780

The kimono is one of the most famous items or images associated with Japanese culture, and certainly with traditional Japanese clothing. But how much do you actually know about them? How did they become such an iconic garment? How are they used and worn today? And, regardless of all those other questions, do you want to see lots of beautiful pictures of really beautiful kimonos?
Of course you do. Go pick up this book.

 

utamaro


Utamaro and the Spectacle of Beauty

Julie Nelson Davis
University of Hawaii Press, Hawaii, 2008
ISBN: 0824831993

If you want to go a bit further back in time in your studies of Japanese art, Davis’s book on Utamaro is one great way to do it. Utamaro was one of the most famous artists of the ukiyo-e (“floating world”) genre, known especially for his portraits and images of beautiful women. In this work, Davis considers Utamaro and his art in the context of the period, particularly the commercial print market.

 

 

rinpa
Designing Nature: The Rinpa Aesthetic in Japanese Art
John Carpenter
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2012
ISBN: 0300184999

Earlier still are the lavish artworks in the Rinpa style, featuring bold, colorful images and plenty of shiny gold. This book reproduces images of Rinpa artworks beautifully, allowing the reader to sink into their luxuriousness. Carpenter also studies the influence of the Rinpa aesthetic on Western art.

 

brittledecade

The Brittle Decade: Visualizing Japan in the 1930s
John Dower, Anne Nishimura Morse, Jacqueline Atkins, Frederic Sharf
MFA Publications, Boston, 2012
ISBN: 0878467696

Japan may be more famous for the screens of the Rinpa aesthetic or the woodblock prints of the Edo period, but turning some of your attention to a less-studied era may be rewarding. In The Brittle Decade, the authors explore the vibrant art of Japan in the 1930s, a period full of curious mixtures of old and new–like a kimono patterned with images of tanks.

 

Of course this is only a small sampling of the new materials we have for you! Come in and take a look at the new books shelf, hopefully before they’re all checked out.

2015-02-11 11.29.23

New illuminated manuscripts display in Scholes!

This isn’t a full blog post, just a heads up–come check out the new display in Scholes, in the case by the reference desk!  Students from Kate Dimitrova’s illuminated manuscripts class used medieval recipes and techniques to decorate their own pieces of parchment, and the results (along with two pages from our own facsimile collection) are on display.
A full post with pictures of the event artists and their work will be posted later.