Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Pasadena Public Library - Library Assistant - Applications due August 8

Pasadena Public Library
Library Assistant
Full Time & Part Time
$2,873.78 - $3,863.43 monthly
Application deadline 08/07/08

For more information click the link above or go to:

Saturday, July 26, 2008

When A Book Is Challenged - An Example of A Response

I want to refer folks over to Mylibog for an example of how a librarian responded to a parent's concern about a children's book "My Uncle Bobby's Wedding."

In Library 101 there were discussions about the rights of parents to challenge materials and library workers knowing the existing guidelines of the library in regard to challenges to books and materials.

This also touches on collection development issues raised in Library 104. One of the issues the letter brings up is can you deny services to one group while honoring others who feel offended by the material?

What are the stated policies for a patron to respond to a book that they really object to being in the library? This post is an essential read.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Medpedia Project - Verified Medical Wiki

File this one under "Well if you can't beat 'em join em." The Medpedia Project is a collaboration between four leading medical schools, Harvard Medical School, Stanford School of Medicine, Medpedia Project ScreenUniversity of Michigan Medical School and the Berkeley School for Public Health.

The project is currently asking for content from health organizations, health professionals and others in the health care industry.

The goal is to provide open source but vetting medical information that would be available to all users around the globe.

According to the web site Medpedia will serve as "a catalog, database and learning tool about health, medicine and the body for doctors, scientists, policymakers, students and citizens that will improve medical literacy worldwide."

As always there are questions and the FAQ does answer some of mine. Unlike Wikipedia the editors will be selected and approved.

From the FAQ's:
Only M.D.s, Ph.D.s in a biomedical field and people with medical credentials will be allowed to contribute to Medpedia. Although only M.D.s can edit pages on Medpedia, anyone with an interest in health, medicine and the body is invited to be a Member of the Medpedia professional networking community.
The editors will not be paid, it is a voluntary participation. The site eventually hopes to support itself via text advertisements.

One of the questions that hasn't been answered in the FAQ's is whether alternative medical practices such as Acupuncture, Naturopathic medicine, Oriental Medicine practices and similar treatment options would be permitted on wiki.

Angioplasty Example
My List of Questions

A question I have is what is to stop a doctor who has an relationship with a pharmaceutical company to write content in favor of a company that might provide a gratuity to support his/her promotion of certain treatment options? What mechanism is in place to find out if the medical editor's hands have been greased with "special consideration?"

Would the medical community rat 'em out or would it be considered free speech? What would be the controls on the type of content a doctor could or could not post? For example, if the information is counter to what the American Medical Association accepts but the doctor has verifiable information would it be posted or blocked?

My other questions involve reading and comprehension accessibility by average users. What about health care literacy issues? Is it going to be accessible for vision and hearing impaired users? Multiple languages? Video, is there going to be video of certain procedures? Captioned video of course.

Forgive me, I'm greedy. But if this is going to be a global information repository it has a lot of work ahead of them. Some of that work has been paved by web sites like WebMD

What will Medpedia bring to the party and why would library folks use this instead of PubMed or go directly to some of the medical school library/resource web site?

I look forward to having another tool to help folks make health care decisions. I hope it is up to the challenge. Time will tell.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Copyright Slider

If you're like me, you have questions about copyright. Well, in the same e-mail that I learned about the "Day in the Life..." wiki, I also read about this terrific tool. It's a Copyright Slider. You just slide the pointer on the right along the correct year, and the applicable copyright info appears in the windows on the left. Nifty!!

Interesting Wiki: "A Day in the Life of..."

I came across this wiki through one of the several e-mails I get from ALA. Basically, for one week, librarians and other library staff describe their day at work. It's kind of more like a blog in that respect, but there are many people who are posting. It's a good chance to get idea of what it's like to work in various libraries in different positions, especially if you're considering going on to library school. Check it out:

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Interview with Mrs. Joanne Kim

Mrs. Joanne Kim graciously agreed to let me interview her before she exited the doors of the PCC Shatford Library one last time as a teacher and director for the Library Technology Program. Sitting in her office, amidst boxes as she had been packing for the last couple of weeks in preparation for her retirement, it was nice to chat with her about her life and career as a librarian and more.

Mrs. Kim's Pathway to Librarianship
Surprisingly, I found out that she didn't originally plan on becoming a librarian. She had been working on her Ph.D in Linguistics but at some point realized that teaching jobs in that field are scarce. Mrs. Kim said, "I like to meet and teach people so that's why I decided to go into the library field."

In her early 30's, she started her Master's program at Indiana University but transferred and finished up at the University of South Carolina due to her husband getting a job in South Carolina.
Her first librarian job was at a small college in South Carolina for a period of 4 years. Once again due to a change in her husband's job, they moved to California. Her second job was with Modesto College for 5 1/2 years. After that, they settled down in the Los Angeles area. For the next 27 years, she served PCC's Shatford Library in various positions.

Mrs. Kim truly has worn many hats over the past 27 years. She first started out as an Acquisitions Librarian for 3 years. Later, she was the Library Director and then went back to being Acquisitions Librarian for 2 years again. From 1984-1990, Mrs. Kim was also a Dean. For the last 8 years, she has been the Program Director for the Library Technology Program.

In addition, she has taught classes in the Library Technology Program. I asked about how long the program has been around. Mrs. Kim said that it started back in 1964 but came to an end in 1982. Then it started up again in the early 90s. The second time they stopped offering the program was due to lack of time because of moving to our current library building. Then they started up the program again in 2000.

When asked what she liked most about working here at Pasadena City College, Mrs. Kim said, "I love PCC. It's an excellent school. We have good students, teachers, and staff here. I love the fact that it's ethnically diverse." She further explained that life in South Carolina wasn't ethnically diverse like it is here.

Advice to Students
When asked what advice she has for students, Mrs. Kim said, "Enjoy what you're learning and don't worry so much about your grades."

In response to the question of learning English, Mrs. Kim shared her experiences, "I majored in the English Literature at college in Korea. But that was not enough to survive and sustain my academic life here in the United States. I stayed every night to study much harder than normal American-born students. Within two semesters of studying at the University of Colorado, I lost twenty pounds of my weight. It could be a combination effect of stress and lack of sleep. There is no magic in learning English. One has to spend more attention and time to study constantly. I still have some foreign accent but my students all accepted me as your teacher."

She also talked about how PCC's Library Technology program is a good foundation for succeeding in a MLIS program. She pointed out that textbooks used in this program are the same level as those used in a MLIS program. Sometimes the very same books are used.

"Don't let anything get in the way of your dreams" Mrs. Kim emphasized. She also encourages students to apply for as many scholarships as possible.

Retirement Plans
Now that Mrs. Kim has plenty of time on her hands, she plans to paint, travel with her husband who is retiring as well, catch up on her reading and spend more time with her grandchildren-2 grandsons and 1 granddaughter. Their first trip will be to a cruise to Norway/Sweden in the late summer. In addition, they plan to go to New York to see their two grandsons. In the fall, they will be travelling to Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. Sounds like a wonderful way to start retirement!

Friday, July 18, 2008

At Your Local Library

If you're a die-hard baseball fan and just can't get enough of America's favorite pastime, head on over to the Pasadena Central Library or Los Angeles Central Library and check out the exhibits they have on view.

The exhibition from July 1-July 31, 2008 at the Pasadena Central Library features highlights of the Baseball Reliquary's exhibitions over the last ten years at libraries, galleries and community centers throughout Southern California. "Women in Baseball: There's No Place Like Home (Plate)," "Baseball's Time Machine: Photography at the Field of Dreams," and "Life after Baseball: From Espionage to Evangelism" are just a small portion of the samplings on display.

In addition to the exhibit is the Shrine of the Eternals 2008 Induction Day ceremony, to be held in the Donald R. Wright Auditorium at the Pasadena Central Library on Sunday, July 20, 2008. The doors will open at 1:30 pm, the festivities begin at 2:00 pm, and admission is open to the public and free of charge. The inductees will be Buck O'Neil, Emmett Ashford, and Bill Buckner. Terry Cannon, founder and Executive Director of the Baseball Reliquary (and graduate of the PCC Library Technology program) said it's always a standing-room-only event. So it's my recommendation that one arrive early to get good seating and the chance to mingle.

From July 12-November 9, 2008, at the Los Angeles Central Library on the first floor galleries, the "Play Ball! Images of Dodger Blue, 1958-1988" exhibit can be seen as well.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Library Technology Program Update

With the retirement of Joanne Kim, PCC Librarian Krista Goguen will assume the Program Coordinator duties for the Library Technology Certificate Program. Krista has served on the Program Advisory Committee, taught LIB 1 and LIB 10A and helped develop curriculum for the program courses. She will teach LIB 101 in Fall 2008. Krista will maintain the Library Technology Program webpages and the e-mail list. The Library Technology Blog will continue to be maintained by Gena Haskett and Evelyn Keolian.

Please feel free to contact Krista Goguen or Mary Ann Laun at the following:

Krista Goguen
Office: LL303
Phone: 626-585-7832

Mary Ann Laun, Library Dean
Phone: 626-585-7833

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

City of Burbank Library Clerk Position

I realize that this won't leave folks much time to apply for this position but I just found out about this library position at the Burbank Public Library.




Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of a City of Burbank application. Applications must be completed, signed and in the City of Burbank's Human Resources Office no later than 5 p.m., on the last date to apply. Postmark dates are not acceptable.

SALARY: $15.32 - $19.13/hr

DEFINITION OF THE POSITION: Under general supervision, to provide basic library services to the public; to perform a variety of clerical tasks; and to do related work as required.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS OF THE POSITION: Interacts effectively with the public in person and over the telephone, responding to routine procedural and directional inquiries; performs circulation procedures, including checking out books and other library materials to the public; computes fines and assesses charges for overdue and/or lost library materials; makes change, and counts and balances money; assists public in completing various library forms and issues library cards; resolves patron problems and concerns regarding circulating issues; operates computers to input, modify, or retrieve data; prepares new library materials for public use; mends damaged library materials; receives, sorts, and distributes incoming and outgoing correspondence; operates various types of office and library equipment; assists with various library programs; assists in training page, clerical, and volunteer staff; locates and retrieves materials from shelves at various height levels; organizes and maintains filing, indexing, and record keeping systems.


EDUCATION/TRAINING: High school graduation or equivalent. Ability to type 35 net words per minute. NOTE: Clerical experience may be substituted for education on a year for year basis for a maximum of one year.

LICENSE & CERTIFICATES: Applicants may be required to possess a valid California Class “C” Driver’s License at time of appointment. A typing certificate must accompany City application to be considered.


EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS: Knowledge of telephone etiquette; basic mathematics; basic alphabetizing and filing; simple decimal numbers. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with supervisors, staff members, and the public, both in person and on the telephone; work effectively with people of all ages; work in a multicultural environment as a team member; communicate clearly and effectively both orally and in writing; effectively use English spelling and grammar; do effective problem solving; understand and apply library classification systems; operate computer terminals and PCS to input and retrieve data; effectively perform tasks requiring attention to detail; work independently under general supervision; work a flexible schedule; stand for long periods of time; manipulate library materials from shelves at floor level to a height of eight (8) feet; operate library, office, and audio-visual equipment; maintain a safe working environment.

THE COMPETITION FOR THE POSITION: Applications will be reviewed. Admission to competitive examination may be limited to those whose applications show the best combination of qualifications in relation to the requirements and duties of the position. Any part of the examination process may be qualifying only.


JOB CODE: 080489B1

Apply in person at: Human Resources Division, 301 East Olive Avenue, Ste. 101, Burbank, CA 91510-6459. Questions? You can reach them at (818)238-5021.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Opening A Closed Mind - My Own

Well, my toe bones are starting to recover. I wore the poor things out trying to hit every exhibit in the Anaheim Convention Center in one day. Evelyn was there the whole time and it is amazing what she saw and witness. She wall all over the joint.

We both are going to try to give you the highlights of the convention and draw upon some of the resources we packed away. We have got stuff. Bags of stuff. But not as much stuff as we could have had if we had my rolling supermarket cart (the vertical, not the horizontal kind.)


At some point we won't necessarily say we learned or had an experience the convention but it might take a month or two of sorting and reviewing what we have snagged.

The One That Got Away

Yes, about the photo. This is my reminder about preconceived notions and bias. This was one of the first tables I saw as I entered the Convention Center. I looked at the table and read some of the titles. They appeared to be Christian focused. My guard went up. I kinda, sorta read the title and the sub-title, "America's Addition to Porn."

I backed away from a free book. I should not have done that. The more I thought about it afterwards the more I regretted it. But not enough to try to find that table again. I gave up an opportunity to understand a different perspective on how some folks feel about the public and semi-private displays of the time honored YouBangHe or Her discussions.

As I moved though the convention there were all kinds of vendors and exhibitors. Some I gravitated to, some I questioned and others I had heard of via the media. Others vendors I kept my distance. I flat out did not trust them or their content. No need for names.

Lessons Learned

Whatever my believe system or my feeling about commercial displays of carnality, I should have at least flipped it in my bag for a later review.

For the record, I backed away because I was fearful. I'm not sure what being a Christian means (and please don't try to tell me. That is not the point of the post.) so I had an image of what mainstream media tells me and that is kinda scary to me.

I also have my feelings about erotica, sexual information and individual rights. If I plan to work in libraries I have to find a better way to balance the fears with the pursuit of knowledge.

It is not as easy as it sounds. I am still taking the logs out of my eyes.