Category Archives: Public Relations

Young Readers Invited to Write to Favorite Authors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
November 3, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Young Readers Invited to Write to Favorite Authors

Young readers in grades 4-12 are invited to write a personal letter to an author for the Nebraska Letters about Literature (LAL) contest, a state reading and writing promotion program. The letter can be to any author (living or dead) from any genre-fiction or nonfiction, contemporary or classic-explaining how that author’s work changed the student’s view of the world. Submissions must be completed online November 1- December 31, 2020. Nebraska Letters About Literature is coordinated and sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from Houchen Bindery, Ltd., Humanities Nebraska, and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.

The Nebraska Center for the Book’s panel of judges will select a winner and alternate per competition level (Level I for grades 4-6, Level II for grades 7-8, and Level III for grades 9-12) to be honored in a proclamation-signing ceremony at the state capitol during National Library Week in April 2021. Their winning letters will be placed in the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors at Bennett Martin Public Library in Lincoln. Nebraska winners and alternates will receive state prizes.

Teachers, librarians, and parents can download the contest guidelines, free teaching materials, information on the online entry system, and past winning letters on the Nebraska Center for the Book website. There will be an informational NCompass Live webinar on Wednesday, November 4th at 10:00 am CT discussing this year’s contest. Get inspired by listening to past Nebraska winners, Ashley Xiques and Sydney Kohl, read and talk about their letters on NET Radio’s All About Books (netnebraska.org/basic-page/radio/all-about-books). For more information contact Nebraska Center for the Book.

The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the Nebraska Library Commission.

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases .

Posted in Books & Reading, General, Nebraska Center for the Book, Public Relations | Leave a comment

CCC Library Information Services Classes

Central Community College announces class for the Library Information Services program for Spring 2021.

Enrollment opens November 12, 2020 for classes beginning January 11, 2021. All classes are online and can be applied to a Central Community College Associate Degree.

See details of classes and registration information at https://www.cccneb.edu/library/

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Public Relations | Leave a comment

Call for Speakers: Big Talk From Small Libraries 2021

The Call for Speakers for the 10th annual Big Talk From Small Libraries is now open!

This free one-day online conference is aimed at librarians from small libraries; the smaller the better! We are looking for speakers from small libraries or speakers who directly work with small libraries. Small libraries of all types – public, academic, school, museum, special, etc. – are encouraged to submit a proposal. We’re looking for seven 50-minute presentations and five 10-minute “lightning round” presentations.

Do you offer a service or program at your small library that other librarians might like to hear about? Have you implemented a new (or old) technology, hosted an event, partnered with others in your community, or just done something really cool? The Big Talk From Small Libraries online conference gives you the opportunity to share what you’ve done, while learning what your colleagues in other small libraries are doing.

Here are some possible topics to get you thinking:

  • Unique Libraries
  • Special Collections
  • New buildings
  • Fundraising
  • Improved Workflows
  • Staff Development
  • Advocacy Efforts
  • Community Partnerships
  • That great thing you’re doing at your library!

Submit your proposal by Friday, January 8, 2021.

Speakers from libraries serving fewer than 10,000 people will be preferred, but presentations from libraries with larger service populations will be considered.

Big Talk From Small Libraries 2021 will be held on Friday, February 26, 2021 between 8:45 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. (CT) via the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Speakers will present their programs from their own desktops. The schedule will accommodate speakers’ time-zones.

This conference is organized and hosted by the Nebraska Library Commission and is co-sponsored by the Association for Rural & Small Libraries.

Photo by Patrick Fore on Unsplash

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, Grants, Information Resources, Library Management, Preservation, Programming, Public Relations, Technology, Youth Services | Tagged | Leave a comment

Shortlist for 2021 One Book One Nebraska Announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 30, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Shortlist for 2021 One Book One Nebraska Announced

What book will all Nebraskans be encouraged to read in 2021? We will all find out on October 23rd. A Nebraska biography, Midwest nonfiction, a book of essays —all stories with ties to Nebraska and the Great Plains—are the finalists for the 2021 One Book One Nebraska statewide reading program. The finalists are:

  • The Nature of Home: A Lexicon and Essays by Lisa Knopp, Bison Books (2004)
  • Black Print with a White Carnation: Mildred Brown and the Omaha Star Newspaper, 1938-1989 by Amy Helene Forss, University of Nebraska Press (2014)
  • The Loren Eiseley Reader by Loren Eiseley, The Loren Eiseley Society (2009)
  • Prairie Forge: The Extraordinary Story of the Nebraska Scrap Metal Drive of World War II by James J. Kimble, Bison Books (2014)

The One Book One Nebraska reading program, now in its sixteenth year, is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Humanities Nebraska, and Nebraska Library Commission. It encourages Nebraskans across the state to read and discuss the same book, chosen from books written by Nebraska authors or that have a Nebraska theme or setting. A Nebraska Center for the Book committee selected the four finalists from a list of twenty-four titles nominated by Nebraskans. In the coming weeks, Nebraska Center for the Book board members will vote on the 2021 selection.

Nebraskans are invited to take part in the virtual Celebration of Nebraska Books during the week of October 19th-23rd, where the choice for the 2021 One Book One Nebraska will be announced at noon on the final day. This year’s One Book One Nebraska selection, All the Gallant Men (William Morrow, 2016) by Donald Stratton with Ken Gire will be featured in a keynote presentation by the Nebraska Center for the Book Board Member Rebecca Faber. See http://onebook.nebraska.gov or https://www.facebook.com/OneBookOneNebraska for more information about ongoing 2020 One Book One Nebraska activities.

The week-long virtual Celebration of Nebraska Books will include acceptance messages and readings by the winners of the 2020 Nebraska Book Awards emceed by Nebraska State Poet Matt Mason. A list of Nebraska Book Award winners is posted at http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/awards.html. The Celebration of Nebraska Books is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and Nebraska Library Commission with support from History Nebraska’s Nebraska History Museum. Humanities Nebraska provides support for the One Book One Nebraska keynote presentation.

The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the national Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and the Nebraska Library Commission.

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.    

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Celebrate Nebraska’s 2020 Book Award Winners at Week Long Virtual Celebration

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 23, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Celebrate Nebraska’s 2020 Book Award Winners at Week Long Virtual Celebration

Celebrate Nebraska’s 2020 Book Award winners with author readings and an awards presentation ceremony at the Nebraska Center for the Book’s week long virtual Celebration of Nebraska Books starting October 19th. Winners of the 2020 Nebraska Book Awards will be honored and the celebration will include readings by some of the winning authors, designers and illustrators of books with a Nebraska connection published in 2019. And the winners are:

Children’s Picture Book: Your Bridge to History by Portia Love & Preston Love, Jr. Illustrated by Regina Jeanpierre. Publisher: Preston Publishing

Children’s Picture Book Honor: Major: A Soldier Dog by Trevor Jones. Illustrated by Ming Hai. Publisher: Six Foot Press

Cover/Design/Illustration: The Spirit of Nebraska: A History of Husker Game Day Traditions – the Tunnel Walk, Mascots, Cheer, and More by Debra Kleve White. Design by Concierge Marketing and Publishing Services. Publisher: Cheerful Books

Fiction: See Willy See by Faith Colburn. Publisher: Prairie Wind Press

Fiction Honor Series: The Line Between: A Thriller and A Single Light: A Thriller by Tosca Lee. Publisher: Howard Books

Nonfiction Investigative Journalism: Zoo Nebraska: Dismantling of an American Dream by Carson Vaughan. Publisher: Little A

Nonfiction Nature Reference: Great Plains Birds: Discover the Great Plains by Larkin Powell. Publisher: Bison Books

Nonfiction Immigration Story: Citizen Akoy: Basketball and the Making of a South Sudanese American by Steve Marantz. Publisher: University of Nebraska Press

Nonfiction Nebraska Perseverance: Nebraska During the New Deal: The Federal Writers’ Project in the Cornhusker State by Marilyn Irvin Holt. Publisher: Bison Books

Nonfiction Native American History: Lakota America: A New History of Indigenous Power by Pekka Hämäläinen. Publisher: Yale University Press

Poetry: This Bright Darkness by Sarah McKinstry-Brown. Publisher: Black Lawrence Press

Poetry Honor: In a Good Time by Mark Sanders. Publisher: WSC Press

The virtual Celebration of Nebraska Books will also honor winners of the 2020 Jane Geske and Mildred Bennett awards. The Mildred Bennett Award recognizes individuals who have made a significant contribution to fostering the literary tradition in Nebraska, reminding us of the literary and intellectual heritage that enriches our lives and molds our world. The Jane Geske Award is presented to a Nebraska organization for exceptional contribution to literacy, books, reading, libraries, or literature in Nebraska. It commemorates Geske’s passion for books, and was established in recognition of her contributions to the well-being of the libraries of Nebraska.

The 2020 One Book One Nebraska selection, All the Gallant Men: An American Sailor’s Firsthand Account of Pearl Harbor by Donald Stratton with Ken Gire (William Morrow, 2016) will be featured in a keynote presentation. The introduction of the 2021 One Book One Nebraska book choice will conclude the festivities on Friday, October 23rd.

The Celebration of Nebraska Books is sponsored by Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from History Nebraska’s Nebraska History Museum. Humanities Nebraska provides support for One Book One Nebraska. The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the national Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and the Nebraska Library Commission.

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.    

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Regional Library Systems Newsletters

Stay informed with your Regional Library System’s most recent newsletter, or find out what libraries across the state are up to! You can find all archived newsletters on the NLC Regional Library Systems’ Newsletter webpage.



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The Nebraska Regional Library Systems consist of four non-profit corporations governed by boards representative of libraries and citizens in the region. The four systems were established to provide access to improved library services through the cooperation of all types of libraries and media centers within the counties included in each System area. Each system offers a variety of services such as regular newsletters, meetings of library staff, workshops, consulting, and planning reflective of the needs within the region. The systems help the Nebraska Library Commission meet its goals on a more localized level.

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Nebraska Library Commission Awards CARES Act Grants to Advance Digital Equity

NLC Logo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 11, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Christa Porter
402-471-3107
800-307-2665

Nebraska Library Commission Awards CARES Act Grants to Advance Digital Equity

Today the Nebraska Library Commission announced the recipients of $175,105 in COVID-19 response grants to 64 libraries across the state and the Central Plains Library System. Provided by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the grants will be used by local libraries to address digital inclusion and related technical support in the context of workforce development and broadband availability, including: 

  • COVID-19 PPE Response Supplies – Disinfectant sprays and wipes; masks; gloves; sneeze guards for desks and counters; hand sanitizer stations; touchless soap/paper towel dispensers; keyboard covers.
  • Virtual Summer Reading Programs – statewide, year-long subscription to Reader Zone; virtual programming; craft bag supplies.
  • Wireless hotspots, laptops, and tablets to lend to patrons
  • Wi-Fi extenders to expand broadband access beyond the library facility
  • Digital Content: Fee to join the Nebraska OverDrive Group; additional purchases of other ebooks and audiobooks.

“Nebraska libraries have been resourceful and responsive during the COVID-19 pandemic. Acting within public health safety guidance and restrictions, libraries have sought to extend services outside of library walls.” said Nebraska Library Commission Director Rod Wagner. “Library grant funding provided through the CARES Act support libraries in acquiring needed supplies, paying for technology upgrades, purchasing digital content, and more.”

Grant recipients include:

Central Plains Library System
Albion Public Library
Arapahoe Public Library
Arcadia Township Library
Axtell Public Library
Bayard Public Library
Beaver City Public Library
Bellevue Public Library
Bennington Public Library
Broken Bow Public Library
Butler Memorial Library
Central City Public Library
Chadron Public Library
Columbus Public Library
Crawford Public Library
Dakota City Public Library
David City, Hruska Memorial Public Library
Dodge, John Rogers Memorial Library
Elmwood Public Library
Fairmont Public Library
Falls City Library & Arts Center
Franklin Public Library
Fremont, Keene Memorial Library
Friend, Gilbert Public Library
Gering Public Library
Grand Island Public Library
Grant, Hastings Memorial Library
Harrison, Sioux County Public Library
Hartington Public Library
Hemingford Public Library
Kimball Public Library
La Vista Public Library
Leigh Public Library
Louisville Public Library
Lyons Public Library
Madison Public Library
Neligh Public Library
Norfolk Public Library
North Bend Public Library
Oakland Public Library
Omaha Public Library
Ord Township Library
Oshkosh Public Library
Pender, House Memorial Library
Lied Pierce Public Library
Plymouth Public Library
Ponca Carnegie Library
Ralston, Baright Public Library
Lied Randolph Public Library
Ravenna Public Library
Sargent Township Library
Schuyler Public Library
Lied Scottsbluff Public Library
Shelby Community Library
Sutton Memorial Library
Taylor Public Library
Valentine Public Library
Verdigre Public Library
Walthill Public Library
Waterloo, Agnes Robinson Waterloo Public Library
Wausa, Lied Lincoln Township Library
Wayne Public Library
Western, Struckman-Baatz Public Library
Lied Winside Public Library
Wood River, Maltman Memorial Library

The Nebraska Library Commission received the funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to support the role of museums and libraries in responding to the coronavirus pandemic. In March, Congress provided the federal agency a total of $50 million in the CARES Act to distribute to states and territories.

IMLS Director Crosby Kemper III said, “COVID-19 has not only created a public health emergency, but it has also created a deep need for trusted community information, education, and connection that our libraries and museums are designed to provide. Access to and use of all kinds of health, job, government, educational, and community resources are necessary to weathering the current situation, beginning efforts to reopen, and sustaining our institutions.”

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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United for Libraries Virtual: Trustees – Friends – Foundations

Registration is now LIVE for “United for Libraries Virtual: Trustees – Friends – Foundations,” August 4-6!

Visit www.ala.org/united/virtual to register.

This interactive three-day virtual event, free for United for Libraries members (including Statewide Group Members), will feature expert speakers on current topics facing library Trustees, Friends, Foundations, and staff who work with them.

  • Participate in live Q&A sessions with presenters.
  • Network with colleagues across the country in roundtable discussions.
  • Enjoy exclusive access to keynote speakers and authors.
  • Receive a certificate of attendance (for live participation or on-demand viewing).
  • Access the recorded programs for 12 months following the virtual event.

Program topics will include:

  • Advocacy and Equity: How Library Boards Can Create Lasting Impact through Compelling Cases and Outreach
  • Understanding Donor Data Analytics: Why it Matters and What You Can Do With It
  • Strategies for Solving Board Problems
  • Great Boards Don’t Happen by Accident: A Proactive Approach to Building an Effective Board
  • Working with Friends and Foundations: Playing for the Same Team
  • Ask, Listen, Plan: Engaged Planning for Trustees, Directors and Other Library Leaders

…and more!

Keynote speakers include:

  • Jim Taylor, Vice President of Leadership Initiatives, BoardSource [Integrating Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity into Your Board Culture]
  • Jan Masaoka, CEO, California Association of Nonprofits

…and more!

Visit www.ala.org/united/events_conferences/virtual for details, registration form, and schedule.

United for Libraries
The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations
A division of hte American Library Association
312-280-2160
www.ala.org/united

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Free ALA webinar: “Last Chance for a Complete Count”

ALA is offering a webinar for library staff: 2020 Census: Last Chance for a Complete Count, on July 8 at 2 pm ET. Registration is free. After the session, the recording will be posted at ala.org/census.    

New guide on adapting census outreach in response to COVID-19:  
ALA released a new publication, “Libraries and the 2020 Census: Adapting Outreach in Response to COVID-19 (PDF).” The free guide explains changes to the 2020 Census process and highlights opportunities for libraries to adapt census outreach activities.    

Check your community’s response rate:  
How does your area compare in its response rate to date? Which neighborhoods are lagging behind? Find current data to inform your outreach and messages on the 2020 Census Response Rate Map or the Census 2020 Hard to Count Map.    

Share your event on the Census Counts calendar:  
Is your library planning a 2020 Census event (including virtual events)? Submit it to the national Census Counts calendar. Check the calendar for other events from partners in your community.
Posted in Books & Reading, Census, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Public Relations, Technology, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Tagged | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: Nebraska Libraries in the Time of COVID: Planning for Reopening

Join us on NCompass Live next Wednesday, July 1 at 10am CT, for ‘Nebraska Libraries in the Time of COVID: Planning for Reopening’.

Public libraries are major hubs of activity in our communities, so staff must take extra precautions when they start offering more in-person services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Join us to hear what ‘reopening’ looks like in some Nebraska libraries. Library staff will share their planning processes, strategies, experiences so far, and lessons learned as they ensure that their libraries are safe for both their staff and patrons.

Presenters: Cecelia Lawrence, Director, North Platte Public Library; Steve Fosselman, Director and Celine Swan, Youth Services Librarian, Grand Island Public Library; Denise Harders, Director, Central Plains Library System.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • July 8 – Here’s What Python Does for Us: What Can it Do for Your Library?
  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It
  • July 22 – Creating Accessible Materials for Library Instruction
  • July 29 – Pretty Sweet Tech

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Enter Your Library to Win the 2020 Jerry Kline Community Impact Prize

Deadline: July 15, 2020 (Submissions close at 11:59 p.m. EDT.)

The Jerry Kline Community Impact Prize, developed in partnership between the Gerald M. Kline Family Foundation and Library Journal, was created in 2019 to recognize the public library as a vital community asset. When libraries, civic entities, organizations, and the people they serve become close partners, their communities thrive.

Prize: One winning library will receive $250,000 in unfettered grant monies from the Gerald M. Kline Family Foundation. The winning library will also be profiled in the November issue of Library Journal and online.

The winning library will be identified based on the degree of its impact on the community in the following key areas:

  • Engagement – a) How do the local government and other civic institutions partner with the library—and vice versa—to support the service area’s defined civic goals? b) How does the library use deep engagement and co-creation with community individuals and non-governmental organizations to drive library services?
  • Recognition – What does the community recognize are positive outcomes from the library, and how is that recognition given? How is that reflected in support?
  • Inclusion – How does the library go the extra mile to meet the needs of marginalized or underserved populations among its community and to promote social cohesion and connection across differences?
  • Leadership development – How does the library ensure its own organizational strength and dynamism?
  • Environmental sustainability – How does the library lead on sustainable thinking for the library itself and the community at large to ensure future resilience?  
  • Inventiveness – How are the library services original, both strategically and tactically?

Application Requirements

  • Nominations will be submitted via an online form.
  • Nominations should include the following:
    • Nominee data: Library name, primary contact and contact mailing address, phone number, email.
    • Library data: population in service area, physical area served, per capita budget, number of patrons served, number of FTE, number of volunteers, days and hours open per week, types of existing funding sources with their relative percentages within total funding.
    • Multiple-author submissions are permitted. For submissions with multiple authors, please include the names and affiliations of all of the group members.
    • An overview summary of no more than 1,000 words pertaining to the goals and criteria listed above.
    • Detailed answers to focused answers on each of the criteria driven questions above (via fields in the online submission form).
    • Three letters of support from community partners and/or civic leaders, with at least one from a civic official.
    • Optional: Supporting materials such as photographs/images of the library and surrounding community; press coverage, brief videos (not exceed three minutes), etc.

Read about the 2019 winner, Sacramento Public Library.

Eligibility: All U.S. Public Libraries are eligible for the prize, whether in a single building in a small town or a multi-branch system serving an entire region. Previous winners are asked to take a ten year hiatus from submitting again for consideration.

Application Deadline: The deadline for consideration for the 2020 Community Impact Prize is July 15, 2020. (Submissions close at 11:59 p.m. EDT.)

Please submit nominations via the form found here.

Questions? Please contact Meredith Schwartz, Editor-in-Chief, Library Journal at mschwartz@mediasourceinc.com

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NCompass Live: Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons

Find out ‘Who are These People & Why are They in My Library?’ and learn about ‘Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, June 17 at 10:00am CT.

How often does your library make decisions about services offered without checking with library users first? Are library administrators or external agents making decisions on behalf of library patrons without understanding their needs? Are you puzzling over why some of your programs are poorly attended, or services under utilized? Do you sometimes feel like you are floundering in the dark, trying to make sense of patron behavior? Have you done usability testing, but need to go beyond that to learn even easier methods for assessing and improving library services? In this session we will discuss ways to know your users better through some powerful UX techniques like: creating user personas, diagramming user journey maps, conducting focus groups and surveys, field studies, and card sorting. This session, conducted by a librarian at a university and a UX professional from the private sector, will include demonstrations showcasing both qualitative and quantitative UX methods. Attendees will leave with ready models to put to work in their library.

Presenters: Jennifer DeJonghe, Reference and Instruction Librarian, Metropolitan State University; Rich Harrison, User Experience Consultant, Horizontal.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • June 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Leverage Online Learning to Build New Skills
  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Results From COVID/Cares Act Survey

As of this week, we have received 163 responses to the COVID/Cares Act survey sent to libraries, representing a 65% response rate. The input of libraries has been valuable to NLC planning for Cares Act funding. Stay tuned for more information about that, but for now, it might be helpful to summarize the survey results.

The survey asked what libraries are doing to prepare for re-opening, and what the concerns are upon re-opening. This bar chart at the top illustrates the results, and note that libraries could choose more than one response. Cleaning, handling of materials, and programming topped the list. However, it is important to note that many libraries are concerned about the proximity of patrons in various areas of the library (e.g. meeting rooms, computer labs, etc.). Some noted a potential shift when re-opening to provide extended computer lab hours in order to accommodate needs, or providing more mobile devices for check out (inside or outside of the library) in order to provide social distance.

As far as staffing goes, we know that some libraries have experienced RIF’s (reduction in force), and layoffs, but this has not been the norm. Over 30% of respondents reported all staff reporting to work, and over 30% reported at least the director reporting to work. It is appropriate to note that many libraries only have one primary staff person (the director). Only 6% reported that no staff were coming to work. Numerous libraries are offering alternative services, as over 75% reported providing curbside circulations and over 40% reported providing virtual programming. 90% of survey respondents reported completing tasks associated with circulation and mail processing. This likely includes cleaning and quarantining items, and almost 75% reported maintenance, security, and cleaning tasks performed by staff.

The survey also asked about what the library’s needs are upon re-opening. Topping the list is an alternative to in-person summer reading events, and making sure items are clean and safe by providing adequate sanitizing and protective equipment. This chart at the right shows those results.

Finally, some of the open-ended answers give insight into longer-term needs of libraries to address community concerns and prepare for the future. Anecdotally, some of these responses include the following:

  • Expanding the range of Wi-Fi to areas outside of the library, allowing for users to be more spread out;
  • Device lending to community members that do not have their own (e.g. laptop, tablet computers);
  • Providing relevant information about COVID-19 to the community;
  • Online/virtual programming;
  • eBook and Audiobook availability and access;
  • Providing materials (clean and sanitized) such as books, puzzles, music, videos, games, and activity packs to quarantined or at risk groups;
  • Improve internet speed and infrastructure to handle increased demands;
  • Printing, copy, and fax services (providing with lower touch);
  • Reference and partnerships with organizations to support unemployment, economic recovery, small business, and other assistance; and
  • Hotspot lending.

Many libraries are now evaluating their technology, network infrastructure, and Wi-Fi (range, speed, etc.). Did you know that NLC offers FREE technology assessments and help to you? If you are interested, please check out our Better Broadband webpage for resources, and to move forward towards an assessment, contact ,Holly Woldt.

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2020 State Aid Information Has Been Posted

The 2020 state aid calculations are now complete. This year, we’ve transitioned from paper state aid letters to electronic distribution of information to public libraries. You should have received an e-mail notification about your aid if you are an accredited public library. Here is some general information about the state aid program and eligibility, and how it is distributed. There is also a posted list of the state aid distributions for 2020 (including this year’s formula, the payment amounts, and aid per capita). Finally, here is a link to a press release you can customize and use for your particular library.

This year, there were 46 libraries that will be receiving Dollar$ for Data payments. Those libraries are now eligible to apply for accreditation.

The next public library survey collection cycle (required to maintain accreditation for accredited libraries and required for unaccredited libraries to receive Dollar$ for Data payments) begins in November.

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CCC Library Information Services Classes

Central Community College announces classes for the Library and Information Services program for Fall 2020.

Registration opens April 14, 2020 for classes beginning August 17, 2020. All classes are online and can be applied to a Central Community College Associate Degree.

See details of classes and registration information at: https://www.cccneb.edu/library/

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Drinking Water Safe During COVID-19 Pandemic

LINCOLN – As Nebraskans are taking preventative measures against COVID-19, the Drinking Water division of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) would like to remind everyone that drinking water remains safe to use.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that COVID-19 has not been detected in drinking water, and that conventional water treatment methods of filtration and disinfection — which are in most municipal drinking water systems — should remove or inactivate the virus causing COVID-19.

“Common disinfection methods used in water and wastewater treatment are expected to be effective for inactivation of coronaviruses when executed properly,” said Sue Dempsey, administrator of the DHHS Drinking Water Division.

Dempsey advises water system operators to continue monitoring drinking water disinfection processes for systems with upstream wastewater impacts both during and after the outbreak for infectious coronaviruses.

Although drinking water from the tap is safe for public consumption, federal guidance also recommends that the public consider maintaining a supply of bottled water. If people are ill and have to isolate in their own homes, it is easiest to use bottled water rather than sanitizing water glasses that might be shared with the rest of the household.

Stay up to date on the latest news regarding the Coronavirus with the World Health Organization, CDC and DHHS.

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Nebraska Library Commission Awards Grants for Youth Library Service

NLC Logo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 3, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:                            
Sally Snyder
402-471-4003
800-307-2665

Nebraska Library Commission Awards Grants for Youth Library Service

The Nebraska Library Commission recently awarded $18,500 in grants for Excellence in Youth service. Of the grants awarded to twenty-two Nebraska libraries, several addressed the need for materials like LEGO®, STEAM, and other activities to encourage creativity in young people. The Nebraska Library Commission congratulates the public libraries listed below as they develop new and innovative programs to ensure excellence in library service for Nebraska young people.

The recipients are:

  • Atkinson Public Library, Preschool learning materials, books, and activities
  • Battle Creek Public Library, LEGO®  kits and STEAM kits
  • Bayard Public Library, ten group activities and programing, and Makerspace equipment
  • Bellevue Public Library, iPads for youth patrons for hands-on learning opportunities including Spanish, Photography, and Music Composition
  • Blue Hill Public Library, Teen Nights at the Library
  • Burwell, Garfield County Library, Teen Space renovations and Teen Advisory Board creation
  • Central City Public Library, Summer Reading Program presenters
  • Columbus Public Library, Coding Clubs and Teen Game Nights
  • David City, Hruska Memorial Public Library, Imagination Play Area supporting STEM learning for young children
  • Franklin Public Library, LEGO® Club, Teen programing, and Summer Reading Program
  • Genoa Public Library, Youth materials, and programming for afterschool and summertime
  • Hastings Public Library, STEAM focused activities, Mega-Brain Kidz Club, and Summer Reading Program presenters
  • Kimball Public Library, Expanding STEAM at the Library, Makerspace technology, and supplemental equipment
  • Madison Public Library, 1000 Books before Kindergarten
  • Mead Public Library, Summer Reading Program
  • Minden, Jensen Memorial Library, expanding diversity at story time using multilingual materials
  • Neligh Public Library, Teens After Hours program
  • Ord Township Library, afterschool activities for youth
  • Plattsmouth Public Library, Golden Sower Awards programs
  • Lied Randolph Public Library, STEM activities, Youth programs, Learning toys & stations
  • Superior Public Library, themed Reading kits (backpacks) for young children
  • Wausa, Lied Lincoln Township Library, STEAM kits for youths

Youth Grants for Excellence are made available by the Nebraska Library Commission with funding from the State of Nebraska. As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020 is tomorrow!

Small libraries! Awesome ideas! FREE!

Join us tomorrow for the Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020 online conference. Registration is still open, so head over to the Registration page and sign up!

We have a great agenda for the day, with seven 50 minute sessions plus five 10 minute lightning round sessions. You can log in and out of the conference as you like throughout the day, based on your interest and availability.

Topics range from technology to programming to new roles for the library. This event is a great opportunity to learn about the innovative things your colleagues are doing in their small libraries.

And, Nebraska library staff and board members can earn 1 hour of CE Credit for each hour of the conference you attend! A special Big Talk From Small Libraries CE Report form has been made available for you to submit your C.E. credits.

So, come join us for a day of big ideas from small libraries!

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Public Relations, Technology, Youth Services | Tagged | Leave a comment

Only One Week Until Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020!

Small libraries! Awesome ideas! FREE Online Conference!

There’s only one week until Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020!

Check out the full schedule and register to join us next Friday, February 28.

Sponsored by the Nebraska Library Commission and the Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL), this free one-day online conference is aimed at librarians from small libraries; the smaller the better! Each of our speakers is from a small library serving fewer than 10,000 people. This event is a great opportunity to learn about the innovative things your colleagues are doing in their small libraries.

Everyone is welcome to register and attend, regardless of how big or small your library. But, if your library serves a few hundred to a few thousand people, this is the day for you!

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$24,500 in Internship Grants Awarded to Nebraska Public Libraries

NLClogo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
February 3, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:                            
Christa Porter
402-471-3107
800-307-2665

$24,500 in Internship Grants Awarded to Nebraska Public Libraries

Nebraskans will once again reap the benefits of the energy and creativity of Nebraska young people as they serve as interns in their local public libraries. The Nebraska Library Commission recently awarded Nebraska Library Internship Grants totaling $24,500 to twenty-two Nebraska public libraries. These internship grants will support public library interns, who will contribute to the scope and value of the diverse programs and activities in Nebraska’s public libraries.

“The internships are a great opportunity for students to get involved in library work. Beyond earning money and gaining valuable work experience, the student is exposed to the broad range of library services and programming. Internships provide an opportunity for the student to view the library as a viable and satisfying career choice. In addition, interns bring a fresh perspective and their own unique talents to the library,” said Nebraska Library Commission Director Rod Wagner.

Student interns will learn about library work as they shadow staff, assist with day-to-day library operations, and implement special projects. Some of the activities that students will participate in include:

  • plan and implement programs such as summer reading programs for all ages, storytime sessions, book discussions, and teen/tween activities;
  • implement a Young Adult Book Group or a Teen Summer Reading Program;
  • organize Makerspaces and Maker Clubs, as well as other STEAM learning activities;
  • create a Local History Collection;
  • assist with outreach events outside the library;
  • update the library’s website and social media sites (Facebook, Pinterest, blogs, etc.) or in some situation designing and coding a new website;
  • assist with circulation activities, book selection, and collection management;
  • create flyers, newsletters, newspaper articles, and other promotional materials; and
  • work with Summer Youth Outreach Services to provide Bookmobile services at locations throughout the city and county.

The following Nebraska public libraries were awarded 2020 internship grant funding:

Alma, Hoesch Memorial Library
Atkinson Public Library
Axtell Public Library
Bassett, Rock County Public Library
Bayard Public Library
Bellevue Public Library
Columbus Public Library
Falls City Library & Arts Center
Grant, Hastings Memorial Library
Kimball Public Library
Lincoln City Libraries – Three branches (Bennett Martin, Loren Corey Eiseley Branch, Charles H. Gere Branch) and the Lied Bookmobile/Youth Services Department
Orleans, Cordelia B Preston Memorial Library
Oshkosh Public Library
Oxford Public Library
Plainview Public Library
Shelby Community Library
York, Kilgore Memorial Library

Additionally, five public libraries participating in the Library Innovation Studios: Transforming Rural Communities (LIS) project have also received 2020 internship grant funding. The interns hired in these libraries will primarily be working with this LIS makerspace grant. These libraries include:

La Vista Public Library
Lied Pierce Public Library
McCook Public Library
Nelson Public Library
Superior Public Library

Funding for the project is supported and administered by the Nebraska Library Commission, in partnership with the Nebraska Library Systems.

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, “bringing together people and information.”

Nebraska’s Regional Library Systems consist of four non-profit corporations governed by boards representative of libraries and citizens in the region. The four systems were established to provide access to improved library services through the cooperation of all types of libraries and media centers within the counties included in each System area.

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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