Monday, June 29, 2009

YALSA: Power Up With Print

This workshop was called "Power Up with Print" and was sponsored and hosted by YALSA and Southern MD Regional Libraries on Monday, June 22.

The workshop was presented by Jamie Watson.

Strategic Planning, Vision, and Mission: One of the first things we discussed is the need for teen services and in particular those librarians serving teens to determine or know what their libraries' mission, vision, and strategic plans for teen services. We all thought about, dictated, and shared our mission/vision. This is something I had thought about, but had never thought about and wrote. This is what I personally come up, but everyone's is different depending upon the library, position, and services offered:

"My personal mission/vision is to ensure that every teen that walks through the library dooes will be treated with respect and will have their information and reading needs asked about and fulfilled in the best and most courteous way possible. My mission is to encourage and embolden teens to develop and share their love of reading and writing, and for those who fo have these, foster a newfound passion for something they can relate to and/or believ in. And, it is important for me to provide a safe, social outlet as a way to seek out help, and mentoring in the community." As Jamie noted, it is very important to have your "elevator speech" ready when someone has a question about what you do whether it is a parent, teacher, stranger, or even possible community partner.

We went on to contemplate the things we felt that we are strong in in teen services and where we have weaknesses. Jamie noted that it important to find out each others' strengths and weaknesses so that we can help others and in turn be helped when we need it.

In the afternoon, we examined the 50 Best Young Adult Books and the 50 Best of the 21st century. What would be your 50 best Young Adult books? What criteria would you use to create the list?

In addition, we discussed the Printz award books and the criteria. We also held a discussion on whether or not we agreed with those who have won the award in the past and why or why not. Jamie is on this coming year's Printz committee. Suggestions for books to be concerned can be submitted via the YALSA website.

Then Jamie posed two intriguing questions to us. 1) If you could only have 10 books in your teen section, what would they be? 2) When you have a reluctant reader who comes in and gives you no clues about anything he/she may be interested in, what is your one go to book? Please feel free to comment and share your suggestions!

Lastly, we had a discussion about teen library programming in which we all shared things that we are currently featuring or have featured for teens. Some of the neat ideas featured were:
classic board game nights
Teen Idols
American Guitar Hero Contest
Teen and Tween nights once a month
Mother/Daughter yoga
Mother/Daughter Book Clubs

Jamie also shared with us some very notable technology statistics that she found throught the Pew Research Internet Project:
  • 97% of teens play video games
  • 75% of teens have cell phones
  • 75% of online teens have created content for the internet

Lots of information was also shared about YALSA. To get more information about their organization or booklists go to

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

WebJunction Courses: Analyzing the Market / Competitive Factors in Strategic Marketing

[Posted on behalf of M.F., WMRL Public Relations Coordinator. Courses mentioned were accessed through WebJunction.]

1. Analyzing the Market
I learned the 4 elements of analyzing the market: scanning the environment; how market segmentation assist in developing products and marketing strategies; tools for marketing planning; and quantitative and qualitative forecasting options.

2. Competitive Factors in Strategic Marketing
I learned how to develop and present a marketing plan, including consideration of market data and your competitor's capabilities (in our case - the Internet), how to analyze market share and potential growth, and sales forecasting.

Gale PowerSearch 2.0 & InfoTrac Collections / Gale Virtual Reference Library

[Posted on behalf of M.F., WMRL Public Relations Coordinator]

1. Gale PowerSearch 2.0 & InfoTrac Collections:

You can create your own user account and take advantage of their new tools.
You can save searches and marked items over multiple sessions. You can email bookmarked URLs to co-workers. You can get "search alerts" which is an email when new content is added to the site for that search.

2. Gale Virtual Reference Library:

Allows full flexibility with our collection. We own content forever, allows unlimted usage, is accessible by multiple users, the content is availablae in html and PDF formates, and it is translatable into 8 different languages.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Library Journal Design Institute “Going Green” - Keynote - May 8, 2009

On May 8 I had the opportunity to attend Library Journal's Design Institute at the Arlington County Central Library in Northern Virginia. The day-long conference was fantastic. Below are my notes from the morning keynote address. If I find a moment I'll also post separately my notes from the panel discussions.

Keynote address by Steven Carr – Director of Innovation and Service Design Manger, Plaza Library & Arlington Shop

He was the first librarian to be certified as a LEED professional.
LEED began as a non-profit in 1993. LEED is a building certification system from the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED 3.0 launched a few weeks ago. The built environment uses 72% of energy each day. 40% of raw materials each year goes into new construction. We have a great opportunity to save the environment and save money. Buy in from the beginning. As of April 2009, 15,000 projects registered. 2500 certified. Three largest segments for green building – office, education, and health care. Accounts for 85% of non-residential construction. There’s a heightened demand for LEED residential construction. Sustainable materials have improved considerably. Ultimately there will be 3 LEED categories for accreditation– building design and construction (health care, retail, and schools), a green interior design certification, and green building operation and maintenance. LEED is trying to be consistent across all platforms. Credits are now weighted. The more you can bring to saving energy, the more credits you get. The process is regionalized - different if you’re in Arizona or Virginia. Certification levels – gold, silver, etc.. GSA did study of federal buildings – found 7 things. Could save half a billion dollars in DC area if every federal building did the following:

1) Adjust temp between 74 and 78 degrees.
2) Replace filters
3) Reduce number of copiers and printers. 1 copier for every 25 staffers.
4) Replace CRT monitors with LCD
5) Upgrade the ambient task lighting.
6) Improving access to daylight. Reflective tile on ceiling can bounce light into room from windows.
7) Update windows.

Steven referred to the LEED project scorecard. Some things:
Energy & Atmosphere:
• Do you build in town, or on the edge of town and make people use cars?
• Use landscaping that doesn’t need water.
• Air, temperature quality, etc.
• If a staffmember can modify their own personal environment, sick leave goes down substantially.

Sustainable sites:
• You can use wood, but use locally available source.
• When building demolished, separate and recycle materials.
• Use material made in certain distance from building – not shipped from the other side of the world.
• More points now for innovation and regional priorities.
• Extra credit for using a LEED accredited professional on your project.
He described how workflows at Arlington Permitting building were drastically improved as a result of implementing LEED. LEED is really about making people happy first. That’s what’s most important. It’s also good for the planet. LEED certified building baseline saves 29% energy.

Possibilities of the building – are you building something that is so specific that it could only serve that purpose, or could it be modified into something else (that’s a good thing if it can). If architects pressure you to create large boxy rooms, that’s why. These can be reused for a different purpose in the future.

In Arlington development has been clustered near the metro stations, and along bus routes.
Soon a coffee shop put into lobby of library. Economic development trying to get a kinko’s/copier place in building as well. LEED is more than putting a pretty plaque on the building.

Even if you don’t get LEED certified, there are so many things that you can do to improve any building. LEED system is consensus based and market driven.

Benefits of LEED certification: – once registered, you have access to what all the points mean, and can submit questions. Case studies, suggestions – lots of resources become available. Process is 2 phase – design and built phases. Feedback at both phases as documentation is submitted.
• Cost $450 for member of green building council. Design review is $.025 for square foot – as of end of 2009. Will go up in 2010. Cost a little more for existing buildings.

What if your library is in a rural location where mass transit not available? Depending on the situation there are different ways to do it. Lots of libraries offer bike racks and some even offer showers for bikers, at least for staff. Does your library offer reserved spots for people with hybrid vehicles? Spots for people who carpool? One county puts a dashboard on their web site showing energy output of each building each month and each competes to be lower than others – so there’s an incentive to reduce energy costs.

The upfront costs for LEED certification have a 3 year payback. Invest up front and save money in the long term. Cost is about the same now for green and non-green construction. Carpet tile, etc. all pay off.