Meet the Staff, Student Worker Edition: Tyler Grasee

February 24th, 2015 by Holly Roycraft

003 (Medium)Tyler Grasee is another of the Seeley G. Mudd Library’s wonderful Circulation Assistants. He is adept at the full array of circulation duties, including helping patrons find and check out materials. Tyler, who is an anthropology and German double major, has worked in the Mudd since his sophomore year at Lawrence. We appreciate his sweet and helpful nature, and are always impressed with his impeccable sense of style. Read on to learn more about Tyler!

Tyler, where are you from?

I’m a local! Originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin.

What’s your favorite part of your job?

I love the interactions with professors, visitors, and other non-students. Working with and meeting new people are nice breaks from studying.

Share something you’ve done at work that has made you especially proud.

I’m not certain I’ve done anything particularly notable behind the desk, but there is definitely a sense of personal satisfaction on the rare occasion I find a lost book.

As a student, where is your favorite study/relaxation/hang-out spot in the Mudd?

The Kruse room on the fourth floor has a great view and very cozy furniture.

What are your hobbies?

Though traveling, attending concerts, reading, and writing are all at the top of my list, food will always be number one. There is nothing I appreciate more than an interesting culinary experience, whether it be out or at home. I’ll eat anything.

What’s the last book you read that you couldn’t put down?

“The Prophet” by Kahlil Gibran. If you like poetry, it changes your life within the hour it takes to read.

What are your favorite bands or performers?

Classical music is my first love, but I usually find myself listening to Disclosure, FKA Twigs, Grimes, SBTRKT, Tei Shi, Lana del Rey, Janelle Monae, Edith Piaf and Marlene Dietrich, and of course, Beyoncé.

How about your favorite blogs and/or magazines?

This is difficult for me to narrow down, but I’ll give it a try: Fast Company, Chronicle of Higher Education, Hello Mr., New York Magazine, Dazed and Confused Magazine, the Atlantic, Vogue, and GQ are a few.

What groups and/or organizations are you active in (on or off campus)?

I’ve been most active in Hillel, Anthropology Club, and GLOW.

When will you graduate? What are your post-graduation plans?

I’m graduating this spring! I’m hoping to get my Master’s in museum studies.

Is there anything you’d like to share about the Mudd with your fellow students?

Interlibrary loan is a great tool, use it!

Lawrence Students at the WLA Conference

February 13th, 2015 by Allison Wray

Back in November, three library student workers, Allison Wray, Aubrey Klein, Andrea Parmentier, along with Angela Vanden Elzen, one of our reference librarians, attended the 2014 Wisconsin Library Association Conference.  The three students were invited to attend because they are interested in pursuing library sciences and librarianship after college.  In addition to helping organize the Conference’s Makerspace, everyone was able to attend some of the numerous presentations and talks, featuring a huge range of topics.  It was a fantastic experience, here is what Andrea, Allison, and Aubrey have to say about it!

(From Left) Andrea, Aubrey, Allison in front of the Makerspace

(From Left) Andrea, Aubrey, and Allison in front of the Makerspace

Andrea: I am very grateful for the opportunity I had to go to WLA.  The conference really solidified my resolve that librarian is the career path I want to follow.  I felt that I fit in with these people who want to help people learn and have fun.  It was interesting to see how and what kinds of ideas were exchanged through the conference.  There was a lot of programming interesting for me, even not being a librarian.  I went to panels about how to cater library programs and events to different groups and about keeping up with teens and teen literature, as library programming is one of the areas of librarianship I am most interested and those talks seemed most interesting to one not in the field.
The panels and speeches weren’t the only place to find out more information, however.  The exhibition hall, and especially the makerspace that Angela was in charge of, was a great way to meet people and exchange ideas.  Not only were the projects ideas in and of themselves, but librarians working on activities chatted with one another about how to adapt the ideas to fit their own library’s needs and goals.  Talking to a couple of librarians was cool too, especially talking to a librarian from our own Appleton Public Library about the types of activities she has for the teens.  All in all, I learned a lot about the ways librarians work to improve their services and what those services are.

Allison: My favorite part of the conference was probably exploring the exhibition hall. There were so many neat tables and people; it was really cool to see such a variety of stalls.  I also really enjoyed some of the presentations I went to, especially the ones on young adult literature and graphic design.  I’m very passionate about art and LGBTQ/feminist activism so I was pleased to be able to participate in a discussion space concerning topics I care about, especially ones relevant to teen readers. I was impressed by how many different topics the presentations covered, I definitely wasn’t expecting to directly share my interests in opinions with many people, but I was pleasantly surprised when there was a plethora of relevant and interesting presentations to attend!
I really appreciated that the conference gave me a good idea of the breadth of librarianship and all of the different paths that are available.  I was excited to discover that UW has a Gender and Women’s Studies librarian who was tabling there, and it was great to talk to her and learn about what she does. I was also reminded of just how much libraries do, in both the public and academic sphere. I haven’t had much public library experience, so it was exciting to see all of the programming and ideas that people had. I definitely feel like librarianship is a good path for me—there are just so many different options and opportunities that make it appealing and exciting!

Aubrey: In particular, I really liked the presentations  given by young-adult librarians and hearing what they had to say.  In their work, they use young-adult novels as a way to talk about and teach teens about topics like sexual assault, body-image, LGBTQ relationships and many other things.  I’ve always loved YA but it helped me realize just how important the genre is for teen readers, considering that it is often so easily written off by adults or people who don’t consider YA “serious” reading.
I was surprised at the huge amount of presentations and activites being presented at the conference.  There were a lot of different topics covered under categories like leadership, community and event planning.
The conference definitely reaffirmed that librarianship is the field for me.  I was fascinated and excited by everything that I learned and sensed a lot of community and solidarity among the library community.  It also presented some new paths to me that I may not have thought about before, like teen librarianship.
I was reminded that librarianship is far more than just picking books for a collection.  Libraries are community spaces that provide a variety of resources for every person in the community, from the poorest to the richest.  I love that libraries are a space for everyone to feel welcome and that even if a person comes to the library every day and never checks out a single book, the library is still providing them with something, whether it be internet access, an after-school program, or a warm shelter.  Librarians really play a huge role in community building, and can have a major impact on the lives of those who use the library.

The Mudd Welcomes Kwame Anthony Appiah to Lawrence!

February 11th, 2015 by Holly Roycraft

The Seeley G. Mudd Library is honored to welcome Kwame Anthony Appiah to campus for his convocation entitled “A Decent Respect: Honor and Citizenship at Home and Abroad,” on Tuesday, February 17 at 11:10 am in Memorial Chapel. He is often called a postmodern Socrates, and for good reason; he asks probing questions about identity, ethnicity, honor, and religion during a time when these difficult notions continue to shift. Exciting and erudite, Appiah challenges us to look beyond the boundaries—real and imagined—that divide us, and to celebrate our common humanity. You will not want to miss this important convocation!

Of course, being librarians, we encourage you to learn more about this great thinker before he arrives on campus. You can read his biography here.

Many of Appiah’s works are available for check-out in the Mudd, and can be found by doing an author search in our catalog. These works include:

  • Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers
  • The Ethics of Identity
  • Experiments in Ethics
  • The Honor Code: How Moral Revolutions Happen
  • In My Father’s House: Africa and the Philosophy of Culture

Kwame Anthony Appiah is also featured in the film Examined Life, which attests that “philosophy is in the streets” and can be found on DVD in our media collection. He helped to edit The Dictionary of Global Culture that is shelved in our reference collection, as well as the Critical Perspectives Past and Present series, featuring authors such as Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, Toni Morrison, and Zora Neale Hurston. These works are all located on the third floor. The book Color Conscious: The Political Morality of Race, is an electronic resource that can be found here after logging in on the library’s home page.

We invite you to take full advantage of the many resources available in the Mudd, and to take some time exploring and engaging with Appiah’s work before he arrives. We are certainly looking forward to hearing his convocation address, and hope to see many of you there. Meanwhile, here’s a Ted Talk by the philosopher given in May, 2014:

See you at Convocation!

Meet the Staff, Student Worker Edition: Devin Ditto

February 4th, 2015 by Holly Roycraft

001 (Medium)Devin Ditto is a psychology major from St. Louis, Missouri, and works as a Circulation Assistant at the Seeley G. Mudd Library. We love to see her smiling face from behind the Circulation Desk, where she helps students and faculty access course reserves, locates materials and assists students in navigating the stacks, and helps patrons use the copier, scanner, and printer. Devin enjoys working in the Mudd, and it shows!

We asked this circulation assistant a few questions so that you, our faithful patrons, could get to know her and her work in the library a little bit better. Be sure to say hello the next time you see her in the Mudd, and you may get a glimpse of her shining smile yourself.

Devin, how long have you been working at the Mudd?

This will be my second year working in the library.

What’s the best part of your job?

I think my favorite part is helping students find what they are looking for. The other staff members are pretty great as well.

As a student, where is your favorite study/relaxation/hang-out spot in the Mudd?

It depends on what kind of mood I’m in. If I actually want to be productive, somewhere on the second or third floor. If I want to be a little bit productive but still talk to friends, the first floor. And if I want to make myself believe that I’m being productive, the Kruse room.

What are your hobbies?

Cooking and baking

What’s the last book you read that you couldn’t put down?

Gone Girl - I read at least 200 pages in one day over reading period.

What are your favorite bands or performers?

Oh my gosh, so many favorites that I don’t think I actually have a favorite!

What groups and/or organizations are you active in (on or off campus)?

LUCC (Lawrence University Community Council)

When will you graduate? What are your post-graduation plans?

I will graduate in June. I’m not sure what my post-graduation plans are, but hopefully working, so that I can save up to go back to school, is on the agenda.

Is there anything you’d like to share about the Mudd with your fellow students?

Actually use it! It has so much stuff to offer, from great study spots to a friendly environment. The staff is always really helpful, and you will almost always be able to find what you need or are looking for.

Antoinette Powell Named Lillian F. Mackesy Historian of the Year

January 30th, 2015 by Angela Vanden Elzen
Antoinette (pictured here with Nick Hoffman) talks about the Cleggett-Hollensworth family during the "Bicycling Through Local Black History" tour.

Antoinette (pictured here with Nick Hoffman) talks about the Cleggett-Hollensworth family during the “Bicycling Through Local Black History” tour. (Photo from the History Museum Facebook page).

Our very own Music Librarian and Associate Professor Antoinette Powell has been awarded the Lillian F. Mackesy Historian of the Year Award by the Outagamie County Historical Society!

Nick Hoffman, Chief Curator of the History Museum at the Castle, explained that Antoinette received this award for her “important work on the Cleggett-Hollensworth [and] Newman families, organizing the Tribute Concert, work on Stone of Hope, and the Third Ward website.  [Her] talents for research and storytelling have made all these projects especially credible and engaging.”

Here at the Mudd, we have long known about Antoinette’s talents for research and her dedication to local history. We’re delighted to see that she has been recognized in this way.

Please join us in congratulating Antoinette on this significant award!

The Weekend of Trivia L Has Arrived!

January 23rd, 2015 by Allison Wray

ARC2008-06Beginning Friday, January 23 at 10:00:37pm and lasting through midnight on Sunday, will be the 50th edition of the Great Midwest Trivia Contest hosted by Lawrence University.

For those who aren’t familiar with this Lawrence tradition, Trivia is a 50 hour competition among both on-campus and off-campus teams to answer obscure questions penned by the year’s Trivia Masters.  With one question read every ten minutes, teams have three minutes to complete each question, usually after an intense amount of Google-searching. In past years before energy drinks and laptops, teams would search through encyclopedias, atlases, almanacs, and other print sources to find answers.

The Mudd Library’s archives feature some fantastic images from Trivias past, including photos of teams, sample questions, and more! Here is where you can check those out. In addition, Lux contains digitized copies of past editions of The Lawrentian- browse through student articles about Trivia!

And for those of you participating in Trivia L this year, check out the MIT Libraries’ Google search tips!

Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 17th, 2015 by Holly Roycraft

001 (Medium)As the Lawrence community prepares to celebrate and commemorate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with speakers, discussions, and acts of community service, the Mudd library offers heartfelt reverence, as well as a collection of materials that those wishing to honor the man and his mission will appreciate.

We have several DVDs featuring this incredible and inspiring civil rights activist. King: A Filmed Record-Montgomery to Memphis highlights his life and work, from the beginnings of the Civil Rights movement in Montgomery, Alabama, and culminating with his assassination in Memphis in 1968. Featuring archival footage, this film is an indispensable primary resource of a pivotal moment in American and world history. It originally screened in theaters for one night only in 1970.

Roads to Memphis documents the story of assassin, James Earl Ray, his target, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the seething, turbulent forces in American society that led these two men to their violent and tragic collision in Memphis in April of 1968. This film explores the wildly disparate, yet fatefully entwined stories of Ray and King to create a complex, engaging, and thought-provoking portrait of America in that crisis-laden year.

Satyagraha is a visionary opera telling the story of how Mahatma Gandhi developed the philosophy of satyagraha, nonviolent active resistance, as a political revolutionary tool to fight oppression, connection his lifework to three historical figures who advanced his philosophy, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Mudd library also features many books about MLK, Jr., most of which can be found on the fourth floor. These include biographies such as I May Not Get There With You: the True Martin Luther King, Jr., Let the Trumpet Sound: the Life of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Coretta Scott King’s My Life with Martin Luther King, Jr. Titles like Parting the Waters and Pillar of Fire, as well as To the Mountaintop: Martin Luther King Jr.’s Sacred Mission to Save America and Judgement Days: Lyndon Baines Johnson, Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Laws That Changed America explore the social and political context of the country during this pivotal period of history.

Books that focus specifically on King’s work, his philosophy, and his speeches include, among many, The Preacher King: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Word that Moved America, King Among The Theologians, and Martin Luther King, Jr.: Apostle of Militant Nonviolence. The book A Call to Conscience: The Landmark Speeches of Martin Luther King, Jr. is available both in print and on CD.

We also have music CDs available that pay tribute to Dr. King’s legacy. These works include Alice Parker’s Sermon From the Mountain, which features a cantata celebrating the life of the civil rights leader and Sinfonia by Berio Luciano, which includes a tribute to King’s memory and is also available on LP.

We are happy to provide so many resources, both informative and inspirational, pertaining to the work and life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and we invite you to visit the Mudd on Monday, January 19, as we pause to reflect on his life and legacy. If you are planning to honor his memory with an act of service in the community, we’d love to hear about it.

Founders Day 2015 @ the Mudd

January 15th, 2015 by Allison Wray

January 15th, 2015, Lawrence University celebrates its 168th birthday.  Join us in the library after 10 a.m. to celebrate with us and enjoy some delicious cake!

In the meantime, here’s a little history about our beloved Mudd and the libraries that came before it:

Sam Appleton-In 1854, Amos Lawrence’s uncle-in-law, Samuel Appleton died and left $10,000 in his will for the “the increase of the Library” at Lawrence. In Uncle Sam’s honor, the library was called the “Appleton Library of Lawrence University.”

-Before 1906, the library was in Main Hall. MH interior According to the 1855 catalog, access to the library was limited to one visit and one book per week, but by 1859, the Faculty Library Committee voted that “no students except those of the Senior Class shall be allowed to go into the Library to consult books.”

-The library catalog was handwritten and listed books as they were added to the Catalogcollection. To check out a book, “On a slip of paper write the title of the book desired, the letters and number, according to the Catalogue, together with the name of the person drawing, and hand it to the Librarian, or his assistant. It would be well to put down several, in the same way, so that if the 1st be not in, the 2nd, or if the second be not there, the third may be drawn, and so on.”

Zelia -Zelia Anne Smith, class of 1882, was Lawrence’s first full-time librarian and she served in that role from 1883 to 1924. This painting of her (to the right), commissioned by alumni on her death, hangs in the University Librarian’s office.

The Carnegie -In 1905, Lawrence received a donation from Andrew Carnegie for the construction of a new library building. That building, located on the site of the current library, was torn down in 1974 to make way for the Mudd.

It’s a New Year in the Mudd!

January 5th, 2015 by Holly Roycraft

003 (Medium)You know that you can rely on the Mudd as a place to research and relax, but we can also help you resolve, too! If you’ve made New Year’s resolutions, we have many materials on hand that just may support and inspire your intentions for 2015.

If incorporating more physical fitness into your daily routine is a goal for you in the upcoming year, check out our video collection, which includes DVDs on yoga, strength training, zumba, belly dancing, and more. We also have multiple versions of the video game Just Dance, if you wish to work out while learning some great new dance moves. Perhaps you’re interested in being more mindful about the food that you purchase and eat. If so, we have many documentaries to inform and inspire you, including Forks Over Knives, Fed Up, and Food, Inc. The third floor houses cookbooks and books about mindful eating, with titles like Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life and Eating Mindfully: How to End Mindless Eating and Enjoy a Balanced Relationship With Food.

Speaking of mindfulness, if beginning or deepening a meditation practice or dealing more constructively with stress and anxiety is a challenge that you’re hoping to tackle in 2015, we have many resources on the practices of mindfulness and meditation. These include books and CDs by Jon Kabat-Zinn, the works of Pema Chödrön, and titles such as LinkCalming Your Anxious Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Free You From Anxiety, Fear, and Panic and Five Good Minutes: 100 Morning Practices to Help You Stay Calm and Focused All Day Long. Or, head to Circulation to check out the Wii that we have available and try out Deepak Chopra’s game Leela: body. mind. spirit. play.

Of course, the best way to abate stress and anxiety is to remain on top of your academic workload and to seek assistance early and often from your friendly and helpful librarians. If you’ve resolved to become more studious this year, check out the research guides that we’ve compiled for various subjects and an array of classes; these guides highlight useful resources that support academic work for specific classes and subjects. The Reference Desk is an obvious place to turn for support in maintaining your academic goals, and we offer help either in person or virtually. Reference librarians are on hand six days a week to answer questions and to help with research. If you’re in need of in-depth support, research appointments are a great way to access advanced research assistance for your project, paper, or bibliography. Staying abreast of your studies and coursework is a laudable resolution for the new year, and the Mudd librarians will do their best to support you in this endeavor.

The Mudd can help with even more resolutions. Perhaps you intend to stay more informed on current events, either domestically or internationally. We subscribe to a large number of local and international newspapers to help you do just that. Are you interested in learning another language? We’ve got you covered with a large selection of language media, including resources to help you study Estonian, Finnish, Chinese, Latvian, French, and many more. If you aim to unplug a bit and to spend more time offline in the new year, we have a ton of contemporary literature and many graphic novels for pleasure reading to your hearts’ content. We also have board games available for check-out, like Chutes and Ladders, CandyLand, Twister, and Scrabble.

Regardless of what you’ve resolved to change or to begin in the new year, and even if you don’t make any resolutions at all, all of us in the Mudd wish you a wonderful 2015, and sincerely hope that you will take full advantage of the multitude of materials and resources that we work so hard to provide. Here’s to a great year!

Celebrating the Holidays!

December 11th, 2014 by Holly Roycraft

007 (Medium)Are you looking for some holiday cheer? Check out the Mudd’s impressive collection of holiday books, CDs, movies, and more!

We have a varied and extensive  selection of  holiday favorites, sure to fill your home with joy and mirth, regardless of how you choose to celebrate the season. Grab your family and some hot chocolate and hunker down to enjoy a classic holiday movie such as A Christmas Story, The Nightmare Before Christmas, A Christmas Carol, or It’s a Wonderful Life. Enjoy the magic of The Nutcracker as you wrap gifts, or decorate your tree to the sounds of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Light some candles and learn more about Kwanzaa or the history and meaning  behind popular Christmas traditions, or relax with some Yule and Winter Solstice-inspired refrains. Gather around the fire for a read-aloud of Christmas poetry by Dylan Thomas or Maya Angelou. Counteract the stress of your holiday shopping with the hilarious Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris or You Better Not Cry by Augusten Burroughs.

Check out our Pinterest page to see an assortment of the holiday materials we have available for checkout. Or, stop by the Mudd to hang out; the library is a cozy, quiet oasis in the midst of whipping winds and holiday bustle.

All of us at the Mudd wish you and your family the very best this holiday season!