Hack Your Program: University of Iowa SLIS

08/07/2011 § 4 Comments

Note: like other posts in the Hack Your Program series, opinions expressed here are mine alone. I have grown so much and enjoyed myself thoroughly at SLIS, so the few items I offer as ‘areas for improvement’ should be viewed as constructive criticism and also understood through the lens of LIS education or the U of I as a whole: most of the things I talk about it that section are not specific to SLIS. I absolutely loved by time at SLIS and felt like it allowed me to really come into my own as a researcher and a student–I’d love to hear the thoughts of other SLIS students and alumni too, and I’m happy to share more information with folks who are considering applying!

Quick Overview: SLIS is located in the University library in Iowa City. Our department has 8 faculty members (all of whom I adore, btw) and small class sizes. The largest classes I encountered were the Foundations courses (more on that later) where the entire incoming cohort (~30 people I think is average) takes the courses together. Most of my classes had between 12 and 20 people, although some have slightly more or less. The MLS is a two-year program, although some students (like me) take longer.

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Unpacking the Conference: Planning, Execution, and Afterthoughts

22/06/2011 § 4 Comments

This post is a shared effort between HLS editor Julia Skinner and Katie DeVries Hassman, Sam Bouwers, and Gwen Persons, who were part of the conference planning team for Unpacking the “Library”: Exploring Works in Progress Across the Field of LIS. Other planners included Melody Dworak, Christine Mastalio, and Julie Zimmerman, who looked over parts of the post for us! To see more about the programs from that day, go to Julia’s post here.

Conference attendees

The audience waits for a conference session to start.

Part I: The Planning

Julia: Planning a conference is a lot of work. It’s fun and rewarding work, but if you’re going to hold a conference make sure to give yourself as much time for planning as you can! The idea for our conference came when we wanted to find another way to educate our fellow students and encourage them to grow professionally. Having a goal and a framework in place when we started planning was important, because it made our lives much easier when people asked ‘why are you hosting a conference?’ or ‘what do you hope people will get out of this?’ « Read the rest of this entry »

[Series] Hack ALA: Library History Round Table (LHRT)

12/06/2011 § Leave a comment

LHRT is an awesome organization for students to join because it’s fun, vibrant, and a great way to explore libraries of the past and see how they intersect with issues faced by libraries today. Best of all, there are so many ways for students to get involved that include running for office, publishing in the newsletter, or connecting with us via social media.

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Carnegie_Library.jpg

Carnegie Library image from Wikimedia Commons

A lot of you already know that I have a slight obsession with library history. That’s why, when I joined ALA, the first sub-group I looked at joining was LHRT (Library History Round Table.) I love LHRT because it’s a nice mix of researchers, faculty, students, and practicing librarians. LHRT hosts a few ALA sessions each year (see the bottom of this post for a list), along with a library history conference every few years. The people who are in elected positions are incredibly welcoming, as are all the members I’ve met. LHRT is an awesome organization for students to join because it’s fun, vibrant, and a great way to explore libraries of the past and see how they intersect with issues faced by libraries today. Best of all, there are so many ways for students to get involved that include running for office, publishing in the newsletter, or connecting with us via social media. LHRT folks are very approachable, so if you can think of another way you want to be involved, don’t be afraid to ask!

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ALCTS Job Search Resources

14/05/2011 § 7 Comments

Hi all!

Recently, my awesome friend (and fellow Iowa alum!) Diana Symons shared this listserv discussion with me, and after talking to Tiffany Allen, I got permission to share it here. Since quite a few of us are graduating (our ceremony is today, in fact) and moving on either to more school or to jobs, this seems like a timely bit of info to share. There are some really great tips for students and recent grads about job searching and navigating through the field, and I’d love to hear comments from you about what you’ve tried and where your job search is at! Tiffany Allen also suggested that we share a link to the ALCTS-eforum so our readers can sign up for the listserv and continue the conversation there (after all, that is where all these awesome resources came from, and it would be a great way to talk with people who have done the job search!)
Happy beginning of summer!
Julia

Job searching

From the ALCTS listserv:
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Tuscaloosa, and what you can do to help

29/04/2011 § Leave a comment

HLS readers:
I’m posting this on behalf of our lovely editor, Lauren Dodd, who is in Alabama for her MLS. Earlier today she posted an update on her own blog about the devastation there, and the HLS team wanted to share it here. Lauren is OK (yay!) as are the other folks in UA SLIS (double yay!), but they are asking for help to recover. I copied and pasted her original post below for you to read. A big thanks from Lauren and all the HLS folks for reading and for your help!
Julia

I wish I were updating this blog under better circumstances. It has truly been a great semester until now.

On Wednesday, April 27, the city of Tuscaloosa, Alabama was struck by an EF-5 tornado. Much of the city is demolished. The university where I have finished my MLIS, University of Alabama, was spared, but classes and exams have been cancelled, and graduation ceremony postponed until August. As far as I can tell, everyone I know is safe, but I have many friends, as well as SLIS faculty members, who have lost their apartments or houses. The damage is widespread, and there have been many deaths.

Click here for photos of the devastation in Tuscaloosa and pictures and videos of the tornadoes and damage statewide.

Tuscaloosa was not the only city struck that day — statewide, Alabama has lost over 200 lives. President Obama has declared a state of emergency and is sending federal aid. If you would like to help out with the relief efforts, even just a small donation ($10 or so) would be greatly appreciated. Here are SEVERAL easy ways you can help, whether you are in Alabama or far far away. See also Donate to UA SLIS (a fund for UA SLISers who have suffered damage and loss).

A huge THANK YOU in advance for any assistance you can provide.

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