New Lecture Series

A new GSLIS lecture series, "Change the Narrative, Not the Name," will give students a number of opportunities to learn about the daily realities associated with working in libraries and the chance to network with colleagues in the field.

The series' name addresses the changes occurring in the library field today. With a shift from being labeled "information professionals" to being called "metadata specialists," librarians are obtaining new names every day. Yet the name changes don't necessarily reflect the specialized skills and benefits librarians bring to communities. "It's essential to craft a message about librarians that accurately reflects what we do and that communities can understand and appreciate. Part of that includes becoming better informed ourselves about what our communities already know and understand, and where we can raise awareness and focus our education efforts. Students have an opportunity to develop a relevant vision about the profession that we can carry forward," says Assistant Professor Laura Saunders.

Guest presenters and GSLIS alumni who work at all levels in a variety of library and archive settings will be invited to share their experiences and connect with students. A casual question-and-answer session will be held after the speaker's presentation to encourage dialogue. Light refreshments will be served.

Sponsored by the America Libraries Association Student Chapter, the lecture series is led by the Library Liaison group, which includes Simmons GSLIS professors Monica Colon-Aguirre, Mary Wilkins Jordan, Lisa Hussey, and Laura Saunders. The series will be held four to six times each semester at different hours during the day to allow students with varying schedules a chance to attend at least one lecture.

As one of the upcoming speakers, Erin Harper, the technical services librarian at Edwards, Wildman, Palmer LLP, will speak from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. on March 25 in P-206. Next, Betty Edwards from Draper Laboratory is scheduled to speak on April 9 about her experiences working in a specialized aerospace research and development laboratory. In the middle of the semester, Anne Gancarz '10LS, the community services librarian at the Chicopee (Mass.) Public Library and a Director at Large on the GSLIS Alumni Board, will share her insights into public library outreach on April 18. Later on in the semester, Kelly Alice Robinson '04LS, also a Director at Large on the Board, will talk about working as librarian at the Boston College Career Center. If you are interested in participating in the series as a presenter or would like to attend, email Mary Wilkins Jordan at mary.wilkinsjordan@simmons.edu for more information.

Article by Jennifer Moyer

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