Centennial Library

Shhhh! No More: Cedarville Librarians Get Chatty

May 17th, 2017

Over the past two years, visitors to the library’s website might have noticed a new interactive feature – an “Ask Us” chat button. This little button often on the side of the screen offers a big help, allowing anyone to reach out to our librarians for instant research support. Whether browsing the library’s homepage or searching through one of our many databases, users can chat live with a librarian ready to answer their research questions.

The LibChat feature has been popular among students since it began in Fall 2015. It’s a convenient way to get research help right when you need it, whether studying in the dorm or on vacation halfway across the world.

But Cedarville librarians are always looking for new ways to improve services, and last semester changed the chat button to an interactive pop-up window on the library’s homepage. Since this seemingly minor modification, online chats have increased dramatically – about 150% over the last semester!

Not only have chats increased, but the new pop-up has opened opportunities to better reach Cedarville’s diverse community of library users, especially distance learners. From high schoolers enrolled in the College Now program, to commuters, to online graduate students, to off-campus pharmacy students, LibChat is becoming an essential tool for library support. The library has even seen chats increase from alumni and local pastors over the past few months. Regardless of the information need – whether something as simple accessing databases to something as complex as in-depth research – our librarians are prepared to help, and our users are grateful for the assistance. “Extremely helpful and timely!” wrote one student. Another commented “This librarian helped me a ton with my research” after their chat.

Perhaps next time you picture a librarian, rather than envisioning someone shushing in every corner of the library, think of a friendly expert ready to chat online and help you with your research needs!

Finals Week Event: Take a Step Back into the 80s

May 2nd, 2017

Great Scott, it’s finals week at CU!

To help students destress during finals, Centennial Library is once again hosting a special study break event on Tuesday, May 2nd from 7 to 9 pm.

Come for snacks and drinks, stay for some totally rad 80’s video games with awesome activities and coloring too. We’ll even have a photo booth where you and your friends can deck out in 80’s gear to the max! Pop in for a quick break or chill for a few hours in the library’s Lower Level.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a nerd, a prep, a jock (or any other 80’s stereotype!), just don’t be a spaz – come to the library for a totally tubular finals week party.

Library Careers Event

April 25th, 2017

Stacie Schmidt, a 2011 graduate of Cedarville University, met with students interested in library careers on Thursday, April 20, at the Centennial Library. Stacie earned her master’s degree in library & information science from UCLA and currently serves as Reference & Instruction Librarian at Biola University in California.

Stacie shared her personal journey from an initial interest in library work and especially archives, to her realization that she was better suited for a position that involved more interaction with people. She illustrated her talk with photographs from the fascinating internships that she did while in graduate school. Stacie provided advice to current students and answered their questions about graduate school, gaining work experience, and the job search process. The students who attended the event represented a variety of academic majors. Some plan to start their own MLIS programs next year, while others are just beginning to explore the idea of a career working in libraries or archives.

While majoring in History at Cedarville, Stacie was employed as a Circulation Services student assistant at the Centennial Library and also completed the Centennial Library internship course. As a graduate student at UCLA, she worked at the university’s Powell Library and interned at George Lucas’ Skywalker Ranch Library, the 20th Century Fox Research Library, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

Honors Day | April 6, 2017

April 6th, 2017
Several of our student workers and interns were recognized during Honors Day this morning….congratulations to all!
(clockwise from top left)

Laura Ullom-2016 Intern (ELML)
Monique L Muncy Scholarship

Caroline Clauson-Circulation (Communication)
Salt & Light Scholarship
Abigail Gingrich-Circulation (Business)
Boyd Accounting Award
Scholarship for Women in Business
Sharon Tapia-Collection Services & 2016 Intern (Library)
Centennial Library Scholarship Award in Library Science (*presented by Julie Deardorff, Director of Library Collection Services)

Library Career Exploration | Lauren Yost

March 28th, 2017

Lauren Yost, a junior Linguistics major, is doing a Library Career Exploration with us this semester. In this post, she shares some of her experiences…

In November, I attended the library careers dinner as someone with many interests and a short-term sense of direction (and also as someone who likes free food, if we’re being completely honest). I did not know just how significant that dinner would be in shaping the next few months. As each presenter displayed her own experiences with library science, I realized just how diverse and unique of a field that it is. It so perfectly combined my interests, passions, and skills in a way that I did not know possible.

I had considered library science before, but for the first time, it made sense for me. So, in an impulse decision I emailed Julie Deardorff, expressing my interest in participating in a Career Exploration. I did not know exactly what it would look like, but I knew I had time and I wanted to know more. We sat down at the start of the new semester and made a plan.

Because of my interest in public libraries, I split my time between Centennial Library and the Cedarville branch of the Greene County Public Library. While on campus, I got a thorough preview of library basics. Julie gave me a tour of the whole library, introducing me to all the faculty and staff along the way. I later got to work with some of them individually, learning about serials, circulation, collection development, acquisitions, and other related tasks. I thoroughly enjoyed learning the ins-and-outs of what it takes to run a library and desired to get my hands on more.

In contrast with the more practical, seemingly mundane side of libraries, I also got to explore the more relational, creative side. I was able to assist Sharon Kerestes in preparing for the Blind Date with a Book program, taking me all the way back to my days of reading YA fiction for hours on end. It was so exciting getting to see the end result of that work a couple weeks later. I also spent a morning at the public library talking with Liz Anderson, who was in charge of a wood painting event going on that morning. I was able to help set up and then actually participate, really getting a unique view of library programming from both the outside and the inside. I wrapped up my time of Career Exploration by creating a book display, which aside from being just plain fun, also exposed me to more of the wonderful collection we have on campus.

I also had opportunities to have “next steps” conversations with Sue Jeffrey at the public library and Kirsten Setzkorn here on campus. These conversations, along with other smaller ones I had with each of the librarians with which I interacted, really confirmed that library science was a field I wanted to pursue. Additionally, each librarian had a different story of how she got to where she is now. For some, like Sue and Liz, it was more of a second career; for others, like Kirsten, it was a first. Each librarian had her own unique path to library science with seemingly (at first) unrelated experience and different times of positions and graduate work. This was incredibly encouraging to me, knowing that I was not already behind in entering the field and that my other experiences can only benefit a future career.

I came into this Career Exploration program and each individual meeting with no idea what to expect or even what kinds of questions to ask; it was a literal exploration for me. I left with a clearer understanding of the field of library science and how I might fit into it. As my time has now come to a close, I am excited about all the possibilities and cannot wait to learn and discover more.

Intern’s Perspective | Sharon Tapia

March 17th, 2017

“What does that mean exactly? What does a librarian do?”

This is the question that usually follows up “It’s a shame libraries are ending” or “I didn’t know you needed a degree to do that!” when I tell someone I want to work in libraries. Since I decided to pursue a career in library science my senior year of high school, I have learned various responses to these questions. As a freshman in college I smiled and nodded, as a sophomore I would try to explain collection services, as a junior I rolled my eyes with impatience. As a senior, now, I turn to the wonderful experiences I have had, especially during the past two semesters, to learn just how much librarians do (spoiler: it’s quite a lot)!

During this past year I have had great opportunities learn more about libraries and prepare for my future library career. In the Fall, I took part in the Centennial Library intern program with Shaune Young and Laura Ullom and I am now taking an independent study about academic libraries. The more I learn about the field (and all the variety within it), the more excited I am about advocating and informing people about library work. Here are just a few of the alternative job titles that fit snugly within the umbrella of librarian:

1. Librarians are market researchers.

Okay, so last semester I got to explore academic, public, and school libraries as part of my internship. Some of my favorite moments were visiting the Greene County Library in Cedarville, working at an elementary school library, and working with librarian Julie Deardorff in Collection Development. Each librarian had to understand their communities to know what activities to hold, what books to collect, how to organize their libraries. Greene County library had a large inspiration fiction section while the school library had adventure chapter books and science books about sharks. While working with Julie I learned how she constantly reassesses the Centennial Library collection, staying aware of what professors are asking for and getting to know their topics to anticipate the kinds of books she needs to order. She keeps lists of books ordered and checked out every day.

Librarians must stay informed about the needs of their community and make sure their collection reflects its interests. Librarians stay in touch with their communities, understanding what the people are reading and what else would be helpful to them. There are so many steps in assessing, developing, and processing the books before they even hit the shelves!

2. Librarians are teachers

During my independent study this semester, I had the opportunity to help librarian Joe Fox teach an instruction section to a freshman year speech class. Research librarians regularly teach sessions like these. The students learn not only the resources available to them at the library itself, but how to evaluate and find information. While anyone can operate Google, most people have no idea how to see if the source is credible or trustworthy. Librarians teach skills beyond how to use OneSearch, like how to develop skills that will help them stay informed and competent outside the library.

3. Librarians are mediators

Librarians organize information in a way that makes it easier to access. They are trained researchers who know how to find the answers to difficult questions, and then display them in a way that any person can understand. During my independent study, I got to work with Luann Nicholas in her department of OhioLINK and InterLibrary Loan. As library staff, she helps find articles and books to share with the other academic libraries in Ohio. I am helping create a research guide on the library website and seeing how to locate and organize different resources in a way that is appealing and attractive.

Librarians act as mediators and conduits from information to people, finding the best answers and allowing others to access it.

And those just scratch the surface, librarians are also preservers of history, researchers, storytellers, technology experts, and the role is changing and evolving all the time! There is a ton of complexity and nuance to the role of librarian and her place in society.

So next time you wonder what librarians are doing all day, maybe stop and ask yourself, “What don’t librarians do?”

Blind Date with a Book

February 22nd, 2017

Are you tired of reading textbooks?

Are you stuck in a reading rut?

Try a Blind Date with a Book at Centennial Library!

Books from a variety of genres are on display but their identities have been masked!

Take a chance on the unknown and choose your “date” from the few clues provided. It could be a perfect match!

You can also “Rate Your Date” for a chance to win a prize!

Books are on display by the Main Entrance and in the CMC.

Intern’s Perspective | Shaune Young

November 21st, 2016

img_6403Libraries contain a special sort of magic that is not always visible to the naked eye. You step in and you see the magic out of the corner of your eye. There’s that book that’s going to change your life. There’s that friend that will be there for life. A vast world has just opened up before you. This is how I felt entering the New York Public Library. Though I have been to many libraries this one is by far the greatest I have seen, and I have seen the Library of Congress. This library is what inspired me to start my journey as a librarian.

As grand as this moment was there was a time before I visited the New York Public Library when a very kind librarian named Julie Deardorff planted a seed in an unanchored English major who was lost at a career fair. She opened my heart to the possibility of libraries as a future career. The New York Public Library sealed the deal.

On this particular trip to New York I was going to see a live orchestra perform the score to The Two Towers along with the film, but before the show started I begged my fellow travelers to go to the syoung1
library with me. I could have spent hours there, but I could tell that my companions were less eager to explore the hidden nooks and crannies of the tall stone structure. I did, however, get a glimpse into the rare books collection they had on the third floor. My father told an assistant after ringing a mysterious doorbell that I was going to study library science. The assistant assumed that I was already in grad school asking where I was going to school, and I sheepishly told her I was only an undergraduate English major. She humored me all the same.

Now flash forward to now over a year later, and I again was shown a magical room that contained ancient artifacts that hold the key to the past. Cedarville’s archives and special collections is tucked quietly away in the basement of the library. The wonders stored there are truly something special. Dean Lynn Brock works very hard to keep all of the collection carefully preserved, and he even creates displays for the BTS, for students and faculty to observe history through books.

syoung3Dean Brock has an excellent collection of Bibles and Christian related books. They are so delicate and old I am transported back into another century every time I see them. I imagine myself as a Pilgrim holding my Geneva Bible on the sandy shores of Jamestown, or as a 17th-century priest preparing copies of the Bible to secretly distribute. Cedarville’s history, though not as old as New York, still contains a vast network of lives and stories that are not that different from my own. I am now a part of the history of this institution. I had the opportunity to set up my own collection of books for students to look at and check out. I was able to make a display for Harry Potter in order to promote Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. This was a fun opportunity for me to share something I’m interested in with other students who may share my interest, and Harry Potter is a wonderful tale of magic and good vs. evil. An opportunity to share a love for knowledge is always a blessing.

Getting to work with faculty and staff like Dean Brock is also a blessing. We interns are getting to experience different areas of the library that keep it running and growing to meet students’ needs. syoung2So much of their work goes unseen and underappreciated by the students here, so I hope that by making fun book displays and getting information out there about how the library can help students, lets students know that there are people working hard behind the scenes to make the library an enchanting place to be.

Shaune Young is a senior English major from Bel Air, Maryland

11th Annual Library Careers Dinner

November 18th, 2016

A record number of students from a wide variety of academic majors attended the 11th Annual Library Careers Dinner on Monday, November 14, 2016 in the Center for Biblical & Theological Studies. Hosted by the Centennial Library, the event allows students from all majors and all levels of interest to learn more about the career options available in libraries and in related fields such as museums, archives, etc.

img_8037Following a dinner catered by Sara Campbell of Silver Spoon Event Planning, the 2016 Centennial Library Interns, English majors Sharon Tapia, Shaune Young, and Laura Ullom, provided information about the library’s internship course and shared their experiences. Sue Jeffery, Head Librarian at the Cedarville Community Library, described the new and innovative ways that public libraries are engaging with their communities, as well as her own personal journey from a career in IT, through volunteer experiences around the world, to a master’s degree in library science and the opportunity to serve the town of Cedarville. University and public librarians, alumni working in libraries and attending graduate school for the master’s degree in library & information science, and Career Services staff answered student questions and encouraged them to continue their exploration of the library field.

According to freshman Journalism major Suzanna Slack, “Learning about the opportunities from a fellow student’s point was really interesting to me. I really enjoyed it! ”

Sophomore Marketing & Spanish major Marlana Madonna said, “The event expanded my knowledge of the influence the public library system has on the community. I enjoyed learning more about the variety of tasks libraries do and how they serve their patrons. It was a great encouragement to know that the library system is not losing its value or utility even with technological advances.”

Students who are interested in more information are encouraged to contact Julie Deardorff, coordinator of the Library Careers Program, for more information about the internship course, as well as the less time intensive Career Exploration and job shadowing opportunities.

Library Careers Dinner – Monday, November 14

October 31st, 2016

Curious about the types of jobs that exist in libraries?

Wondering how your major might connect with a library career?

Have questions about the master of library & information science degree?

Thinking about taking the Centennial Library Internship Course?


Join us for conversation and presentations at the:

11th Annual Library Careers Dinner

Monday, November 14, 2016
5:30-7:00 p.m.

CBTS 102/103

Keynote Speaker: Sue Jeffery, Cedarville Community Librarian

Internship Presentation: Sharon Tapia, Laura Ullom, Shaune Young

Dinner provided by Silver Spoon Catering

All majors and interest levels welcome.

Hosted by The Centennial Library

RSVP to Julie Deardorff by November 4

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