Product Updates: New In Context content for 09/29/14

Gale is continually updating and adding new content to our In Context products, ensuring that they offer timely, authoritative, useful information. The items below were added or updated during the week of September 29, 2014.

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It’s In the Family

By Mark H. 

I grew up in a library, literally. Not long after I was born, my mother got her degree in library sciences along with a teaching credential for elementary school. From as early as I can remember, I was at my mom’s side as she filed the card catalog, re-shelved books, and managed the rudimentary computer lab in the library of the elementary school I attended. When my class visited the school library regularly throughout the week, I called the librarian “Mrs. Martin” instead of “mom” so that the other students wouldn’t find out about our relation. This was partly to deter favoritism, but it helped me feel like less of a square by all my classmates knowing my mom was our librarian.

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Why Libraries Matter

By Frank Menchaca

Libraries, it seems, are under attack everywhere. Schools are eliminating librarians. College libraries receive less than three cents of every dollar spent on higher education. Marketing guru Seth Godin— and a chorus of others—has questioned the relevance of libraries in particularly stinging terms.

But there’s good news too. Ninety-five percent of Americans believe that public libraries play an important role in helping people live more successful lives. Students who visit their college libraries even once a semester are much more likely to return to school the following semester than those who do not. According to the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, “the vast majority of readers aged 16-29 have read a print book in the last year.” And 60 percent of Americans under the age of 30 have used a library within the last 12 months.

The message is clear. Libraries—whether academic, municipal, or special purpose—are essential to the health, wealth, and education of the communities they serve. There’s no doubt libraries are challenged by funding cuts and bad press or that they need to beef up their marketing efforts, but the rumors of their death have been greatly exaggerated.

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Libraries Provide Educational (and Creative) Resources for All

By Farah F. 

I was listening to an interview on NPR with Regina Spektor one summer, where she stated that libraries are sort of a level playing field for everyone. Everyone deserves the opportunity to learn, to enjoy books and film, music, and research. Libraries help keep our communities educated, and allow these resources to ALL.

When I was a kid, we didn’t have a decent internet connection. Our house was on 5 acres of land. But we were required to use the internet for our projects in school. Needless to say, the library helped me with this. Even in college, I would look up my grades, pay my tuition, and more, at the library if I was back home for break.

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Finding a New Job

By Aaron C. 

I was in my 2nd year at GMI / EMI which is a school that had a calendar of 3 month CO-OP engagement, 3 months of schooling, 3 months CO-OP, and 3 months of schooling as a 5 year program. My CO-OP sponsor was in California and my family was in Michigan. I tried to lobby for a new CO-OP sponsor with the school but was told that in order to change sponsors I would need to find my own. I walked out of that office and straight to the library.
During the library introduction at the beginning of the semester I remembered them showing us the various company registries and how you could find any company in them. I spent hours pouring over the listings and creating a mailing list of the companies that worked in automation which is not only what I wanted to do but it applied to my degree program.

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Home Away From Home

By Sarah S. 

Growing up my parents were both avid library users. As time went on Mom started working full-time and couldn’t always pick us up after school everyday. We ended up walking to the local library and staying to close (our choice) whenever we went there. We each would find a corner to curl up with our homework and latest personal reading book. Mom would have to search the building for us if she wanted to leave any earlier than closing time.

In high school nothing changed in my love of the library, except for adding a new favorite library. During study hall I would race to be the first one in class so that I would be granted a library pass. It was my hour of bliss during the day; my sanctuary within the school grounds. I did all of my studying either at the town library or in this brand new high school library.

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The Unexpected Roots of National Hispanic Heritage Month: Part One

Each year from September 15 to October 15, Americans celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Begun in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week, this celebration of the histories, cultures, and contributions of Americans of Hispanic ancestry was expanded in 1988.

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