New Role for Searing

Sue Searing has been appointed as the new Interim Associate University Librarian for User Services for the University Library.  She will serve in this position for three years.

“These are such exciting times for academic research libraries,” Searing said.  “Changes in the higher education and publishing environments have inspired us to rethink our service models.   I’m enthusiastic about my expanded role in readying this Library for the opportunities that the near-term future will bring.”

Searing started at the University Library in 1997.  Since then, while serving as the University Library’s subject specialist in library and information science, she has also served at various times as the head of research & planning (user services), the interim women & gender resources librarian, and coordinator of the social sciences division.  Her experience also includes positions in the libraries at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Yale University.  Searing holds a B.A. in Russian language and literature from the State University of New York at Binghamton and an M.A. in library science from the University of Michigan.  She has earned several awards, most recently the Distinguished Service Award from the Library Science Alumni Association at Illinois.  In addition, Searing has authored numerous articles, books, and book chapters.

Searing takes over the position from Scott Walter who joined the Library in 2006.  Walter has accepted a position as university librarian at DePaul University in Chicago.

The Library’s Office of Services provides coordination and leadership for a variety of Library-wide programs and initiatives, including information literacy and instruction, staff training and development, and library assessment.

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).

Investiture of Hotchkiss

Professor Valerie Hotchkiss, director of The Rare Book & Manuscript Library at the University of Illinois, will be honored as the second Andrew S.G. Turyn Endowed Professor at an Investiture ceremony hosted by Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Dean of Libraries and University Librarian Paula T. Kaufman on April 27, 2012.

The Andrew S.G. Turyn Endowed Professorship was established through a generous gift from the estate of alumnus, former librarian, and longtime Library Friend Andrew S.G. Turyn.  Offered on a five-year rotating basis, it is open to full professors of library administration at the Urbana campus who are pursuing innovative research in any scholarly area, including library/information science, the humanities, the sciences, the social sciences, area studies, the arts, or other fields.  The professorship enhances the Library’s services, programs, and reputation by recognizing and fostering significant research contributions of Library faculty.

At Illinois, Valerie Hotchkiss has focused on making its collections more accessible through archival processing and cataloging projects.  She is deeply committed to furthering the profession and training new special collections librarians through the Midwest Book & Manuscript Studies program, which she founded and directs as part of the Graduate School of Library Science.  Hotchkiss is also passionate about public programming in special collections libraries and has organized lecture series, workshops, international exhibitions, friends groups, book collecting contests, and other cultural events to attract visitors, students, and researchers to special collections libraries.

“I am thrilled to receive this honor, and I intend to use the support to bring more students into the world of special collections and to inspire them to use primary resources in their research,” said Hotchkiss.  “The Rare Book & Manuscript Library already plays an important role in the undergraduate curriculum of the University of Illinois—and through our digitization efforts and value-added e-books, we hope to broaden our reach to the wider world of education.”

In addition to leading The Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Hotchkiss serves as professor of medieval studies, religious studies, and library science.  She has a B.A. in Classics, the M.L.S. degree, and a Ph.D. in Medieval Studies from Yale University.  She is the author of numerous books and articles on medieval cultural history, theology, and topics in the history of books and printing.

Jane Block, head librarian of the Ricker Library of Architecture and Art at Illinois, was the inaugural recipient of the Turyn Endowed Professorship in 2007.

Andrew Turyn (1928-2004) was born in Warsaw, Poland.  He and his parents immigrated to the United States in 1941.  His mother, a professional librarian, worked at the University Library as a cataloger and his father, a professor of classics, conducted research in the Library as a Byzantine scholar.  Turyn earned an accounting degree from Illinois in 1952, and returned to earn a master’s degree in library science in 1962.  He went on to become an academic librarian at the University of Rhode Island, but returned to Urbana after retiring.

The Turyn family legacy is documented at Illinois.  The papers of Andrew Turyn’s parents, Felicia L. Turyn and Alexander Turyn, are located in the University Archives.

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).

BEL Closing

The Business and Economics Library at the University of Illinois will permanently close to the public at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 11, 2012.  While the familiar space is going away, the core services and relationships with library personnel will remain or be extended. The Library will continue to support business-related research and information discovery through a program of Business Information Services that will include both “embedded librarian” service programs and participation in the online Ask-A-Librarian services.  The Library will continue to acquire new print and digital materials in business, economics and related fields and the existing liaison relationships for the department will remain unchanged.   Specifically, users will still be able to find the following assistance for their research needs:

  • Becky Smith ( ) will continue to offer consultation hours for faculty and doctoral students in the new College of Business Digital Research Library (DRL), located on the first floor of Wohlers Hall across from the North elevator.  Going forward, Becky will also have office consultation hours in the Main Library, participate in the Ask–A-Librarian virtual reference services, and coordinate the business online resources and web presence in consultation with other BIS librarians. Becky remains the Library’s contact person for any students and faculty in Organizational Design, Strategic Management, Corporate Governance, Business Process Management, and Marketing, and for studies in real estate, insurance, and taxation.  Faculty or students who have worked directly with Becky in the past may continue to seek her assistance on any topic.
  • Yoo-Seong Song ( ) will continue to offer embedded services within the School of Labor and Employment Relations.  He remains the Library’s contact person for Labor and Employment Relations, Business Career Services, programs in Technology Management and International Business, and studies in industrial relations and human resources management. Going forward, Yoo-Seong Song will also be offering reference and consultation hours as a member of the new Social Sciences, Health, and Education Library (SSHEL), which will be located in the Main Library, Rooms 100 and 101 (the site of the former Business and Economics Library) as well as contributing to the Library’s virtual reference services. He will also become the Library’s contact person for students and faculty in the Department of Economics.  Faculty or students who have worked directly with Yoo-Seong in the past may continue to seek his assistance on any topic.
  • Carissa Phillips ( ) will continue to offer consultation hours in the Market Information Lab in the Business Instructional Facility.  She remains the Library’s contact person for students and faculty in the Department of Finance and in Entrepreneurship, as well as experiential programs such as Illinois Business Consulting and the Global Consulting Program. Going forward, Carissa will be contributing to the Library’s virtual reference service as well as offering reference and consultation hours as a member of the Data Services group within the Main Library’s Scholarly Commons, which is located in Main Library, Room 306. She will also be the Library’s contact person for students and faculty in the Department of Accountancy and for Information Systems/Information Technology.  Faculty or students who have worked directly with Carissa in the past may continue to seek her assistance on any topic.

The University Library appreciates the support of the College of Business, the School of Labor and Employment Relations, and the Department of Economics, and looks forward to continuing to serve its patrons’ teaching, learning, and research needs on campus through continued financial support for the physical and virtual collections that support their academic activities.  The University Library would also like to acknowledge the Business and Economics Library staff who have delivered excellent service. Their hard work is especially appreciated during this transition.

Individual questions about this transition may be directed to Sue Searing ( ), Interim Associate University Librarian for User Services.

Users can still access the BEL portal or BEL’s resources at during this transitional period.

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).

Home for ArchivesSpace

News release courtesy of New York University :

ArchivesSpace project partners are pleased to announce that LYRASIS , the largest regional membership organization for libraries and information professionals in the US, will serve as the organizational home for the ArchivesSpace open source archives management system.  Supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the ArchivesSpace project is focused on developing the next generation archives management system, including a sustainable governance and support structure. Leading this effort are the libraries of New York University, the University of California San Diego, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, working in close collaboration with the archives community. More…

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).

Supercomputing Award

News release courtesy of I-CHASS :

The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Library in collaboration with the Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts and Social Science (I-CHASS) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign was awarded a 30,000 Service Units (SU) start-up allocation grant on the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) Blacklight shared memory system at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC). In addition to the award of supercomputing time, the project was allocated 12 months of XSEDE technical support to assist them with optimizing their code and visualizing the results. The project team of principal investigator Harriett Green, English and Digital Humanities Librarian and assistant professor of library administration; Kirk Hess, Digital Humanities Specialist; and Economics Ph.D. candidate Richard Hislop also will be supported by XSEDE database experts and other consultants.

The project, entitled “Bandits and Browsing: Data Mining and Network Analysis for Library Collections,” will build a scalable system for library collection analysis and recommender system development. More…

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).

National Archives Conference at UI

The Archives’ Student Life and Culture Archival Program at the University of Illinois will sponsor and host to its second National Archives Conference for Fraternities and Sororities on June 21-23, 2012, on its Urbana-Champaign campus.  Building on the success of the 2010 conference, this event will bring together experts on archival management, planning, preservation, and outreach with an emphasis on fraternity and sorority records.

One purpose of the conference is to provide archival training and support to headquarters staff members who are charged with their organization’s archives.  Speakers will include Josh Harris , University of Illinois audio-visual librarian, and Angela Waarala , digital collections project manager; Noraleen Young , archivist at Kappa Alpha Theta and archival consultant for Past to Present; and Michele Christian , associate professor and records analyst in Iowa State University’s Special Collections Department.  Featured speaker Diana Turk , a professor from New York University, has written extensively on fraternity and sorority life and will discuss the importance of these groups and their records to the study of education and campus history.

“I found the speakers extremely knowledgeable and very informative about a wide range of subjects.  Perhaps even more importantly was the opportunity to meet so many of our fellow archivists/curators/historians who toil so often without much in the way of resources to preserve the rich history of our fraternal organizations.  The time spent swapping ideas and sharing problems and solutions was invaluable,” said Bob McCully, Sigma Nu historian and 2010 conference participant.  “There is no way I’ll miss the upcoming conference—it’s just too valuable to pass up.”

The Archives’ Student Life and Culture Archival Program at Illinois documents national fraternity and sorority life.  Program Benefactor Stewart S. Howe ’28 provided publicity and record keeping services for fraternities and sororities across the country and created and collected fraternity publications and materials from over 300 American colleges and universities in the process.  His collection, the collection of William Levere of Sigma Alpha Epsilon and the Program’s national holdings, including the archives of the National Panhellenic Conference, North-American Interfraternity Conference, Alpha Tau Omega, and the Fraternity Communications Association, among others, have made the Program a research center for the study of the national fraternity and sorority.

“It was Howe’s deep desire to foster the study and preservation of fraternity and sorority history,” said Ellen Swain, the Program’s archivist for student life and culture.  “This conference is one of the best ways to accomplish this objective.”

The conference is open to all who are interested.  Registration deadline is May 18, 2012.

For more information and to register, visit the conference website at or contact Ellen Swain, archivist for student life and culture, at or 217/333-7841.

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).