September 5, 1999
A welcome from Karin Borei, Staley Library's new director.
As ever, this past summer has been a busy one for Staley Library and its staff. True, the need to provide walk-in service for our patrons (students, faculty, staff, and general public) does slow down over the summer. On the other hand, this is the time when we plan our directions for the coming academic semester and year, as well as accomplishing various projects.
I have been at Millikin for over two months now as the new Director of Staley Library. Although I don't as yet know everything (not that I ever will know everything), I already feel very much welcomed and at home at Millikin.I do have the advantage still of seeing Millikin and the library with new eyes, and of being encouraged to ask endless questions. As an outgrowth of this, it is my intention on an ongoing basis to effect incremental enhancements to the library's already solid core of services. The changes we have made so far are not as dramatic as was the new library computer system that greeted you a year ago, but I wanted to tell you about the various enhancements to look for.
As you have already noticed, we have developed a new home page for the library's web site. Our intent in doing this is to make our many resources and services more obvious to, as well as useful for, the library's users. The library's web site is an ongoing project, and we would greatly value any and all feedback on it.
We have introduced a more sophisticated Windows-based version of the library’s online “card” catalog, although the telnet version is still available as well for those who prefer the familiar. We have created a new intermediary page to help you choose the version most useful to your needs, at http://www.millikin.edu/staley/illinet.html.
Also from our web site, on-campus you can now access without using a password those FirstSearch databases which the State of Illinois provides for us at no cost, as well as the MLA subscription which we do pay for. Off-campus you will still need a password, which we can provide for you via e-mail at your request. More details are available at http://www.millikin.edu/staley/firstsearchlink.html
During the fall semester we will be implementing a computerized system for placing orders for books and other library materials, and for tracking related funds. We will continue to use our current manual system until the spring semester, when we will switch over to the automated approach. At that time, you will be able to see in the online catalog what new materials we are ordering, and also monitor the progress of those orders.
We have made some changes in the library's physical environment, to the end of making the library more attractive and comfortable, as well as easier to use.
In the near future, we are looking to add two more public workstations on the main floor, and I am also hoping to upgrade the furniture which all of the library's public work stations use, to make it more ergonomic and to allow more individual study space for each station.
We have moved the curriculum materials and the juvenile books to a better lit and more spacious area on the second floor, right next to the library seminar room.
We have moved all videos (marked “A-V” in the catalog) to an area on the first floor which is next to the equipment used for viewing the videos.
We have consolidated newspaper microfilms around the full-page newspaper microfilm viewer, in an area in front of the videos.
We have created a reading area (a sofa and easy chairs, a floor lamp, a green plant) in front of you on the right as you enter the library. Here we have shelved new books and recreational reading, as well as our sale books. We intend to eventually create a section of publications by Millikin University faculty in that same location.
We have moved a microfilm reader-printer to the fourth floor, where we shelve pre-1990 issues of periodicals in all formats. There is also a photocopy machine on that floor.
We have created an “old-timey” study area on the second floor, with furniture from when the library was still in Gorin Hall. This is the area to the right off the elevator, where the Allin collection is housed.
We have disposed of unused equipment on the first floor, and shifted study furniture on all the floors.
I have been pleased to meet some of you already, at the various celebratory events that opened the school year as well as in more informal encounters. I hope to meet everyone else too quite soon! Drop by my office in the library, or send me an e-mail.