01 February 2005

Issue Intro: First Issue of 2005!

Welcome to the first issue of BiblioTech of 2005! There have been a few changes around here, including the creation of LSO's official BiblioTech Editor position. The two of us were elected to be co-editors, and with twice the woman-power behind the scenes, we are hoping to publish more issues this semester than ever! This is your chance to be heard, so please send us submissions.

We have some great articles for this issue, including movie reviews, an internship experience, and a local library profile. There is also an article about how to be an effective LSO social coordinator from the people who know what it truly entails. We want to thank all the contributors for their great articles. We couldn't put out BiblioTech without them- keep them coming!

Hope you all enjoy this issue of BiblioTech. If you have any problems with the site or any suggestions to make it better, please let us know.


Erica Hanke and Monica Bafetti
Editors, BiblioTech

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Grossmont College Library Internship

by John Stanton

I started working at the community college library on August 23, 2004. I finished in mid-December. My advisor was librarian Patty Morrison. She and Nadra Farina-Hess (the head librarian) have taught me the ropes of working in a library. They are both excellent mentors and I am lucky to have gotten this internship. Librarians Michelle Blackman and Julie Middlemas have also been very helpful.

My duties/goals: "Will participate in reference, collection development, cataloging, library instruction, and other duties under the supervision of library mentors."

I logged quite a few hours at the reference desk and I greatly enjoyed my time there. It is great to help people learn. I also improved my skills at searching in the OPAC and using databases. In addition to this I have been introduced to many of the duties of a librarian. I also help the students with their technical problems with the computers and other hardware in the library.

The web site for the library is available at http://www.grossmont.edu/library/.

Reference Desk

I spend most of my time at the library working the reference desk. At times I work in a team with another librarian, but at most times I cover the desk by myself. At this point I find that I can answer almost 90% of the questions.

The common questions include the following:

  • How do I find a particular article in a journal?
  • What is a good research topic?
  • Do you have a particular book, CD, magazine, etc.?
  • How do I use MLA and APA citations?
  • How do you use the computer, printer, or scanner?
  • Where is a person, room, Fax machine, telephone located?
  • How do you get to use the group study room?

I really enjoyed helping people by answering their questions. And I am impressed by some of the questions that students ask. It is great when I get a chance to show someone how to use a tool like electronic databases in detail. I have always enjoyed teaching people who want to learn.

We have electronic databases from EBSCOHost (e.g. Academic Search Premier) and InfoTrac (e.g. OneFile, Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center, and Literature Resource Center). We also have a fairly large print collection of newspapers, magazines, and journals.

I have gotten familiar with these electronic databases and feel comfortable in guiding student to material to help them with their research. In the last few weeks of my internship the librarians have been introducing me to print reference materials for subjects such as literature. The more I learn the more there is to learn.

Collection Development

At the Grossmont Library each of the four librarians each does collection development. The library subscribes to a service from Library Journal where review cards are received for new books. Each card is roughly a 3X5 card with a mini-review and a recommendation for what kind of library the book is recommended or not recommended. Reviews with stars are considered exceptional.

The library has a budget for each department at the college for buying books for the year. And each of the four librarians is given responsibility for buying books for their particular departments. Some librarians carefully watch the budget for their subjects and other librarians let the paraprofessionals track the budget for them. Items that are reviewed at the beginning of the year have a higher likelihood of being bought, because money runs out later in the year. And because this is California and a public college, money is not as plentiful as it used to be in the past.

Every two weeks a stack of perhaps 50 cards is received by each librarian. I went through a stack that was received by my advisor Patty Morrison. Out of the stack I recommended that 8 books be purchased.

I paid attention to whether the books that were reviewed corresponded to subjects that were taught at the college, whether the books were recommended for an academic library (as opposed to just a public library); I looked at how many books were already owned by the library on that particular subject. And if the reviewed item had a star I was highly likely to recommend it.

This just covers the acquisition end of collection development. The librarians also perform weeding based on how old a book is or if it is in poor physical condition. But I have not been exposed to this aspect yet.


Nadra has given me an introduction to cataloging (which has been very helpful since I am currently taking a class on that subject). She has also been kind enough to help me with my studies in my cataloging class by answering questions I have.

I worked on an assignment that involves basic cataloging skills to make e-books available to the students. The Grossmont College Library received a couple files containing nearly 3000 MARC records for e-books they had acquired. These files needed to be modified before they could be input into their catalog. Part of the work was done by their computer guru, Rhonda Bauerlein, using a program called MarcEdit. However it was known that approximately 1-2% of the records had errors in them. Also, the local call number of the library has a small but not easily handled modification from the Library of Congress call number. It fell to me to find and fix the errors in the file and to modify the local call numbers.

Rhonda suggested that I should make the changes by hand. But I was worried that I might make mistakes and that it might take me 40-50 hours to make all the changes on just the first 1000 e-books. I therefore suggested that I could write a series of computer programs to do all the needed work and then they could reuse those programs in the future if the need arose.

I spent about 15-20 hours relearning Perl and writing the programs. I chose Perl because it is good at handling string manipulations and it is a free program. Next I worked with Nadra to assign the proper call numbers to the items that were missing them.

This was a great little assignment and I was happy to put my programming skills to use on a library related project. And I was happy not to be modifying nearly 3000 records by hand.

Nadra has also had me do some other cataloging tasks including authorizing new subject headings in the OPAC system.

Library Instruction

The librarians teach a one hour class called Bibliographic Instruction (BI) which teaches students the basics of research including how to use the catalog and databases. Students will often come to the reference desk with research questions for the assignment they received in this class. I have attended a BI class taught by librarian Michelle Blackman to see an example of library instruction.

As part of that assignment the students are given a six page worksheet that guides them through the steps of doing research. The worksheet contains the following parts:
  1. Select an appropriate research topic.
  2. Find books using the Grossmont Library online catalog.
  3. Find a book in the library using a Library of Congress call number.
  4. Learn to "browse" the reference collection to find background information on your topic.
  5. Find magazine, journal and newspaper articles using online databases.
  6. Differentiate between "scholarly" and "popular" press articles.
  7. Find web information using an Internet search engine.
  8. Determine the quality of a web site you found.
  9. Correctly site a reference for one of the items you found in your research using MLA format.

I help students at the reference desk with all of the above aspects of the BI assignment and provide basic library instruction to them. I like to help at least a few students in depth over the course of a 3-4 hour shift. I have them come and sit at a second computer at the reference desk where I can sit next to them. I guide them through all the various resources available at the library. I can spend anywhere from 10-60 minutes (interrupted by other people’s questions) helping a student. People ask such interesting questions. And they are so grateful for the assistance and education.

PATRIOT Act Pathfinder

I have been doing some research on the USA PATRIOT Act and bought a video on the subject that I donated to the library. I also did some research on a couple books on the subject and recommended they be bought for the library’s collection. I have been doing some additional research on quality websites on the subject and created a pathfinder on the subject. A draft of the pathfinder can be found at http://members.cox.net/john.stanton/PATRIOT.html.


This internship has been extremely valuable to me. And I now know for sure that this is the right career for me. I leave work each day I am there feeling very fulfilled. I also know that I would like to work in a college library if possible.

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Holy Trinity Monastery- A Desert Oasis

by Monica Bafetti

Fifty-two miles south-east of Tucson, a Celtic cross rises 70 feet into the air, an unexpected sight in the middle of the desert and especially in St. David, a predominantly Mormon community. The town was founded by settlers in 1877 and in 1974 it became home to the Holy Trinity Monastery, a Benedictine spiritual community. This fertile land next to the San Pedro River is full of surprises: wandering peacocks, a bird sanctuary, and an Oriental garden are among the discoveries awaiting the visitor. Father Louis B. Hasenfuss, Holy Trinity’s founder, called the monastery a “spiritual refuge.” Situated on 132 acres, Holy Trinity consists of living quarters, a church, a dining area, and other facilities, among them a library.

During the Dark Ages and Medieval times, monasteries were islands of scholarship in an ocean of ignorance. Monks were very often the most educated members of society. The average person in those eras possessed no reading skill, so monks preserved and perpetuated literacy and learning. Monasteries stored ancient texts, usually copied by the monks who lived there. Copying manuscripts was not exclusively an educational experience; it was considered by many to be meditative and prevent one’s thoughts from turning to the world outside the monastery. The Order of Saint Benedict has always held education, learning, and the formation of schools and libraries to be part of its unique mission. The Order initiated this tradition by accepting children (intended by their parents to enter the monastic life) as students. This practice gave birth to monastic schools, which in turn contributed to the formation of many of the oldest universities in the western world, including the University of Cambridge.

Although there are full-time monastic residents at Holy Trinity Monastery, the facility is open to visitors from the community. Holy Trinity collaborates with local organizations to carry on the Benedictine tradition of supporting the arts and culture. The San Pedro Valley Center for the Arts is on the premises, along with an art gallery which shows and sells the works of local artists. The members of Holy Trinity continue to promote education in the greater community. The monastery library is open to the general public, and rivals the nearest public library (one town over) in size. In fact, the librarian and others in the community refer to it as the “St. David public Library.”

The library at Holy Trinity Monastery is housed in one building and contains approximately 50,000 volumes. One might expect to find only religious and spiritual materials in such a library, but classics like The Catcher in the Rye are housed alongside more pious works. There is a large selection of material about the Southwest United States and Native American topics, and local authors are a favorite area of collection as well. Multiple professors have donated personal libraries of works over the years, generally upon retirement. The library has been the recipient of a wonderfully comprehensive English history collection, along with psychology, philosophy, and sociology texts. Bird watching, natural healing, and arts and crafts are well-represented as well. The majority of the collection is in book form, but magazines, videos, audiotapes and CDs also abound.

The monastery hosts many retreats for 12-step groups, so 12-step recovery is a major area of collection. About half of the retreats held there each year are not oriented exclusively toward the Catholic faith, and Holy Trinity tends toward an ecumenical view of spirituality. They are currently in the process of purchasing a 15 volume religious encyclopedia to add to those concerning religions and science, Islam, and Buddhism. Due to the nature of the surrounding community, the library houses many books about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, its beliefs, and its history, particularly its history in the St. David region.

An overwhelming majority of the collection has come from donations (around 90 percent). When purchases are made, the materials are nearly always in a spiritual subject area, most often current Catholic topics. Donated items are sold or given away if they do not fit into the library’s collection or are duplicates. Holy Trinity has partnerships with other churches and communities as far away as Africa which accept weeded materials from their collection. They work to support and supplement the Tombstone, Benson, and Cochise County libraries (the three nearest public libraries). Holy Trinity’s library also serves religious studies students from the University of Arizona, Cochise College students, local high school students, and diocesan and parish staff in the area.

The library at Holy Trinity is overseen by Sister Corinne Fair. Sister Fair earned her Master of Library Science at the University of Arizona in 1989, eight years after she assumed the job duties of the monastery’s librarian. There are volunteers who shelve items, catalog materials, and assist patrons. One primary permanent volunteer lives nearby year-round. Other assistance comes from those individuals who stay in St. David, often at the Holy Trinity recreational vehicle park, at different times throughout the year. It is clear from speaking with residents at the monastery that Sister Fair is the backbone of the organization. She believes that the library is one of the “especially holy places in any monastery,” the place where the mind and spirit are nourished by studying scripture and literature.

Sister Fair has chosen to use the Library of Congress Classification system in the monastery’s collection. She and the volunteers log onto the website of St. John’s College (a Benedictine school) and utilize the lists of call numbers available to organize the collection. The specialization of the collection has required unique utilization of the skills Sister Fair learned at the University of Arizona. She quotes one of her cataloging professors as saying, “What we will do in this class will be exactly by the book. When you get your own library, get creative.” The Library of Congress has each section of the Olivetan orders (of which these Benedictines are a part) scattered throughout the religion subject heading. Because the Holy Trinity library needs them all in one section, Sister Fair rewrote parts of the cataloging protocol to better suit her needs. The computerized cataloging project has not been completed yet, as the library is relying on volunteers to complete the massive undertaking. To date they have cataloged approximately 9,000 volumes in this manner.

The Holy Trinity Monastery library is a member of the National Church Library Association, which is rather active in the Tucson area. Most of the librarians are extremely dedicated volunteers without a formal library education. Sister Fair is one of the few to hold a Master’s degree from an ALA-accredited university.

Holy Trinity’s library is open on weekdays from 8:30am to 5:00pm, with weekend and evening hours by appointment. The circulation system consists of a notebook in which patrons sign their name and write down their phone number along with the titles of the materials they are borrowing. As is prominently stated on their website, there is no set loan length for materials. Borrowers who visit from outlying areas are welcome to return items by mail if they do not have a trip to St. David planned in the near future.

This year is the 30th anniversary of the monastery’s founding, and there are several events planned to celebrate this milestone. In February, a new building on the grounds is being dedicated. The Spring retreat, two weeks prior to Easter, will attract oblates from around the country. In Late May, one of the resident monks will be ordained as a transitory deacon (a yearlong obligation before being welcomed into full priesthood). In 2004, Holy Trinity realized completion of a three-year program, Living Stones, designed to train lay leaders for work in parish communities. One of the seventeen graduates of the program was Holy Trinity’s own Sister Fair. She participated as a result of her own desire to learn what was being taught; also, she explains, she wanted to maintain a presence in the group from Holy Trinity Monastery. Continuing education is an essential component of any librarian’s career, regardless of the form it may take.

When this monastery’s library began, it was merely a shelf full of books owned by the founder, Father Louis. As the library has expanded in size, so has its patronage. There are more community members using their services every year, a testament to the openness and acceptance of all factions in this Mormon town. As Benedictines have done for centuries, the leaders at Holy Trinity Monastery practice what they preach. The library plays a fundamental role in fulfilling the monastery’s mission in the world, reaching out to the religious and local communities in a spirit of faith and education.

Special thanks to Sister Corinne Fair for her extensive assistance and words of wisdom.
Holy Trinity Monastery can always use enthusiastic volunteers.

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On Being LSO Social Coordinator

by Virginia Sanchez and Will Ascarza

Librarians and other information professionals have a well-earned reputation for being knowledgeable and hardworking, “nose-to-the-grindstone” personalities. What is seldom seen by many outside the profession is the social, fun-loving side.

The School of Information Resources and Library Science (SIRLS) at the University of Arizona has a very active student chapter, the Library Student Organization (LSO), which brings not only educational and professional development opportunities to the SIRLS student body, but social and networking opportunities as well. To learn more about what an LSO Social Coordinator, or Co-Coordinator might do, read on.

The SIRLS student body is a very busy, diverse and far-flung group of people. As busy as everyone is, it is important to take a "breather" every now and then and have some fun. In between classes and other responsibilities, connect with your classmates, SIRLS faculty and staff, and the other people who are part of the SIRLS community. As the student chapter of the American Library Association (ALA), the Library Student Organization (LSO) provides a support system for SIRLS students, which includes social events.

The LSO Social Coordinator arranges events for the SIRLS community, which includes Social Hours, hikes, tours pizza parties, and other events. Performing the duties of an LSO Social Coordinator allows you to express the fun part of being a SIRLS student as you coordinate casual ways for your fellow students to get together in a social setting, outside of the classroom.

As a Social Coordinator, you are a voting member of the LSO executive Board, and your voice is heard in making decisions on behalf of your peers, based on the information brought to the table during the Board meetings and in networking between meetings. The Social Coordinator position is ideal for someone who loves people and enjoys making a positive difference for others through a leadership role.

Planning events is much easier and fun with the help of a co-coordinator. Don’t try to do everything yourself! Shoot for a minimum, but no maximum. Allow for flexibility in attendance and participation. One social event per month is good, but do not limit yourself. If you want to do seven or eight, why not? The possibilities are unlimited. If you have the time and energy, go for it! There are many resources to find events and locations for social events. A little creativity, some asking about and a bit of keeping one's eyes peeled can add variety to the menu of social events. Coordinate with other board members and your fellow students to plan events that will have a broad appeal. Have board members personally invite folks. People respond better to personal invitations. Break the stereotype of the shy librarian! And always remember SIRLS staff and faculty when inviting.

We are certain that you will see that helping people have fun while getting a great education is just as fun for the planner as everyone else!!

Virginia Sanchez
LSO Social Co-Coordinator, Spring 2004
SIRLS Class of Spring 2004

Will Ascarza
LSO Social Co-Coordinator, Spring 2004
LSO Social Coordinator and SLA Tour Coordinator, Summer/Fall 2004
SIRLS Class of Fall 2004

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Librarian Movie Reviews

by Heather Phillips

“I may not be an explorer, or an adventurer, or a treasure-seeker, or a gunfighter, Mr. O’Connell; but I am proud of what I am.”

“And what is that?”

“I am a librarian.”

This exchange between Rick O’Connell (played by Brendan Fraser) and Evelyn (Evie) Carnahan (played by Rachel Weisz) in Stephen Sommers’ 1999 remake of 1932’s The Mummy* foreshadows Evie’s transformation from the stereotypical librarian, into a librarian who is also an explorer and adventurer.

In a very real sense, The Mummy revolves around Evie, the librarian in question, and her personal transformation, for it is only when she loses her inhibitions that her personal traits are able to completely blossom. Her transformation begins when she meets, and is kissed by the movie’s hero, Rick O’Connell. It continues as she is rescued from a hook-handed maniac by O’Connell (who else?), who proceeds to save her life again by throwing her overboard from a burning riverboat and into the Nile. This is a baptism into a new life. The next time we see Evie after her emergence from the river, she appears in stark contrast to her previous self. Where before she appeared in a conservative bun, wire-rimmed glasses and a primly enveloping skirt, we see her now with her hair down and curling about her neck, veiled and jeweled in diaphanous black with her eyes rimmed in kohl. Interestingly, when Evie later has reason to fear the potential loss of her hero/love, she reverts back to her bound hair and long skirts, albeit retaining a lower neckline and her kohl-lined eyes.

Her transformation is not only an outward one. With her transformation, her adventurous side comes out. We see her racing pell-mell across the sands toward Hamunaptra, the famed city of the dead. Evie has developed the daring and courage to match her intelligence and curiosity.

She will need these traits in her search for The Book of Amon-Ra, aka, The Book of The Living. Her impetuous curiosity leads her to read an ancient incantation (“It’s just a book. No harm ever came from reading a book.”), which reanimates Imhotep (played by Arnold Vosloo), the mummy of the title. She will need all of her intelligence and courage to vanquish the creature and ride off into the sunset with the hero. She must out-deduce a group of renowned and well-funded scholars, thereby discovering the means to save the world from the “walking plague” she has accidentally unleashed upon an unwitting world.

In The Mummy Returns, Evie maintains her transformation – loose hair and cleavage enhancing clothing, as well as a newly demonstrated ability for knife-fighting and shotgun marksmanship, intact. And though she is now married, a mother, and pursuing adventurous archeological interests, she is still a librarian – and one whom “the Bembridge Scholars have been begging” to direct their archives. In this second movie, as in the first, it is her penchant for collecting information and her ability to effectively transmit it, combined with her willingness to act decisively that form the crux of the movie. Imhotep is back again, and he holds a grudge against Evie and her family for defeating him last time. He kidnaps her son, whom Evie and her husband must rescue through their knowledge of Egyptian history.

Neither movie is a “good movie”, as such; but then, neither is meant to be. These movies are meant to be escapist entertainment filled with amazing special effects, hidden passageways, undying love, ancient secret societies and supernatural terrors set in exotic locales and populated by attractive people. And they do it admirably. So I have no problem recommending these movies, unless, however, you just can’t deal with bugs. Between the giant scorpions, flesh-eating beetles and plagues of flies and locusts, these are movies that dedicated entomophobes might do well to be wary of.

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