Monday, August 18, 2008

Professional Presentations

My co-worker, Mary Kelly, and I have submitted a few articles for publication. Under review right now is an article about the idea that tech support IS reference.

To get a little more mileage out of these topics, we submitted them to several library associations as program proposals for their conferences. So far, the American Library Association has accepted both topics as programs for their annual conference next July. This is very exciting! We also submitted them to the Michigan Library Association (who passed on both topics...) and the Rural Libraries Conference (who has not chosen their programs for their April conference yet).

Hopefully our idea that tech support is reference won't scare the crowd too much. We're taking a somewhat radical approach, saying that librarians shouldn't be afraid to touch patrons' personal hardware and should dole out tech advice freely, using tech support questions as an opportunity to learn AND to show the world that librarians are tech savvy and relevant.

On the topic of Adult Summer Reading Programs, our unique message is that it is NOT about reading, but about promoting and marketing a variety of library services. We believe that ASRP's should cater to non-users and "less-users" of libraries and entice them to come back. The idea that a certain number of books must be read for a prize is not as exciting as trying out various library services and feeling like a participating member of the community. Hopefully, again, our audience will accept the message as it is intended and go away inspired to re-examine their ASRP's.

So far, Chicago here we come! Hopefully the Rural Libraries Conference will be interested in our ideas too!

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