Category Archives: Work

A Real Reference Question!

This is major snark, but we’re soo happy!

We had a *real reference question* that had us searching hither, thither, and yon for an answer. I expanded the brain trust working on the question from me to four other librarians and we finally tracked it down.

Oh, what was the question?

I forget, but it was a fat blue book about this *holds fingers apart ~2 inches* thick…

No, actually, it was a request for a breakout of Native American faculty in higher education by state, there was also a variant for African-American faculty by state (which was a touch easier) and another by the same prof for the same class about a census of native american or african american studies programs by state nation-wide… drat, I don’t find the sheet I wrote the exact wording of the questions on so this will seem like an easy (set of) question(s) now.

I’ll leave the detective work to you to cuss in the comments, when I find the sheet I had for the answers we finally came up with I’ll re-post or answer in the comments here (depending on which seems easier for continuity)

Like, talkin’ and stuff

I should, like, talk to people in the middle of summarizing spreadsheets… got a great suggestion about organizing the data I’m summarizing –  powerpoint  ’em.  Of course, that great equalizer of data and summarization, but did *I* think of it? Nooo.  I’m still in the all Powerpoint is evil camp 🙂

Sure it has it’s uses (like for summarizing complex data) but it’s evile.  Ok, maybe not, but it’s fun to say & I *was* zombified by complex data — so that’s my excuse 🙂

What kind of data was I summarizing, you ask?  Basically, I was summarizing IPEDs data and some specifc query responses from our “Peer Institutions” (data which were gathered by my wonderful colleagues).  Who do we identify as peers?  Well, in one sense we include all our sister institutions in the PASSHE; but in this particular project, we selected three of them: Millersville, West Chester, and Indiana as well as six out-of-state institutions: Radford University, Salisbury State University, SUNY Geneseo, The College of New Jersey, Truman State University, and Winthrop University.
We pulled reported budget data, FTE counts, monog + serial collection size & growth, database holdings (which are a bear to summarize), building size & renovation age, and some odds & ends (like restroom facilities) to draw a statistical picture of the Ship Library its standing.

To frame it in the most positive light, we have a hill to climb.

Hrm… I think this post fell victim to subject creep…

So much for avoiding more work…

It must be a Monday, I suddenly have plenty more to do.

Please, don’t get me wrong, I think I should be doing it – it’s just more fun to do when it feels like helping someone else directly.  Hmm… come to think of it, I am directly helping someone else – yay me, I’m doing more work, it’s now my responsibility, *and* I’m helping out a colleague.

I guess it doesn’t get much better than that 🙂

I’m handling the technical side of our webpages now, having a hard time thinking of it as webmastering since I have no real server management components.  Some new templates (in conjunction with ye olde instruction and distance-ed librarians) a-comin’ up (er.. next week)!

Working on the weekend

One of my many excellent colleagues is in the midst of doctoral pursuit; he asked me to cover part of his Sunday shift to finish up some classwork, which of course, I happily am doing.  An excellent way to eke ahead with a few projects I have up in the air.

Of course, the few times I’m really into what I’m doing those pesky patrons come up and ask me questions, but hey, I’m flexible — and more than happy to help anyone, especially to dodge those drudgy tasks I “should” be doing.

Yay, Sundays.

Oooo… RefWorks

Sharon, the nice CSA trainer, demo’d RefWorks for us today.   mmm… yummy goodness… er… you realize I’m talking about the software, right?

Loads o’work (yay, someone else (Doug) is honcho’ing the content) getting RefWorks related pages up and going – we’ve already got one classroom faculty evangelist too.  Woohoo, this may just encourage me to start researching again (my paper trail sort of always seems to trail off…)
PS Happy 10th b-day to my daughter (omg, I’m old)