Inspiration at ILEAD USA

The first ILEAD USA in-person session was held at the end of March at the Mid York Library System in Utica, NY. It was three days of training, networking, and INSPIRATION!

I want to thank the eight teams for participating and Mid York for hosting. The NY State Library has more in-person sessions planned for June and October, and I’m excited to see the team projects progress. Each team is developing an innovative project that uses technology to meet a community need.

We did a bunch of brainstorming in March using outcome-based evaluation (OBE), and the projects are really taking shape. If you need help with project planning and evaluation, please feel free to visit the State Library’s site for the OBE worksheets we used.

Now back to the inspiration! As ILEAD is a national program with multiple states participating, keynote speakers were streamed from Illinois for all states to view. One really stood out for me in terms of its creative and thought-provoking look at libraries and their future. Check out Eli Neiburger’s presentation:

Free training list on WebJunction

I’m prepping for a mini-session that I’m conducting on WebJunction next month, and I came across something pretty great and worth sharing!

WebJunction and the Wyoming State Library have been compiling a list of free, library-related trainings each month. The list is organized by categories (everything from academic libraries to fundraising to technology) and then by date. Abstracts and links for more info are given. These are not just WebJunction sessions but trainings from a variety of sources.

Take a look:

ILEAD USA: A leadership and technology immersion program for librarians

ileadlogoI’m glad to be getting back to my blog! Where did the fall go?

It’s the cold/flu/stomach bug season here, and I have three young children. Enough said. Thankfully, we’re healthy for the moment!

I’m writing today to share a new and very exciting project (and one that AmaLat Consulting is helping to coordinate). The NY State Library has opened up registration for ILEAD USA, a FREE leadership immersion program for all types of librarians in NY. The deadline to put a team together and apply is January 25, 2015.

Here is some info from the website:

During 2015, the New York State Library, in partnership with the New York Library Association and the Mid-York Library System, is collaborating with state library agencies from Illinois, Delaware, Maine, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Utah, and Wisconsin to implement ILEAD USA – a nationwide leadership immersion program utilizing web technologies, expanding library staff’s leadership skills and their ability to use participatory technology. Participants work in teams to address an identified community need and will be assisted by mentors/instructors in developing a successful project.

See for more details and the online application.

Also to note, we are looking for team mentors and instructors. See the above link for those applications as well, or feel free to contact me.

This is a truly unique opportunity for librarians to work together to meet community needs in new and innovative ways. It is also a program that has been well-received and very successful in other states.

I invite you to check it out!

Thank you!

As I mentioned earlier this month, I conducted a Basic Outcome-Based Evaluation (OBE) Workshop in Utica last week, sponsored by the NY State Library.  I want to thank the Mid York Library System for hosting and all of the participants.

We had a terrific group – all came ready to work and share! As a trainer, I love a talkative group. We learned so much from each other and many had great suggestions for others’ projects.

Nice job, everyone! Best wishes on your OBE endeavors. It was a pleasure!

Far from dying

The following article popped up on the NYLINE listserv yesterday, and I was reminded of a conversation:

Not Your Mother’s Library:
How Columbus, Ohio, is building community spaces for the 21st century

Years ago when I was in the midst of my information science coursework, I attended a family reunion. An older uncle shared with me that he had heard I was entering the library field. He said: Libraries are great. It’s just too bad they’re dying in this computer age…that librarians are a dying profession.

I was shocked! He thought I was taking a full course load and working two jobs just to get into a dying profession…? So I proceeded to tell him all about the reinvention of libraries – of libraries as thriving community centers, cutting-edge information technology hubs, and trusted institutions of lifelong learning. I was determined to rid his mind of that old stereotypical image of rows and rows of dusty stacks and Shhhh! signs. It turns out my uncle hadn’t been to his local public library in twenty or so years, and he promised me that he would visit soon.

Unfortunately, I’ve encountered these false beliefs and old, outdated memories of libraries on multiple occasions since. Why do we need libraries if we now have computers, the Internet, and Google? Do people really use libraries anymore?

Kudos to The Atlantic. It’s very helpful when mainstream articles like the one above spread the word about today’s AMAZING (and far from dying!) libraries.