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For decades, psychedelic drugs have been associated with “turning on, tuning in, dropping out” and the countercultural baggage of the 1960s. But what if they hold the key to treating a series of health afflictions? Are they safe? Are they effective?

Michael Pollan Photo by Fran Collin

Michael Pollan
Photo by Fran Collin

Six-time New York Times best-selling author Michael Pollan will explore these ideas March 20 in a Q&A session led by Rhonda Phillips, interim dean of Purdue University Libraries and School of Information Studies. “What If Psychedelics Could Heal?” is set to start at 6 p.m. in Stewart Center’s Fowler Hall. The lecture/presentation is open free to the public. The presentation will be followed by a book signing outside Fowler Hall at 7:15 p.m.

Pollan is author of the recent “How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence,” as well as other books including “The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals.”

This Ideas Festival presentation is among many events celebrating Purdue’s sesquicentennial celebration, 150 Years of Giant Leaps, which acknowledges the university’s global advancements made in a variety of fields. This event aligns with one of the celebration’s Giant Leaps themes, Health, Longevity and Quality of Life.

What IF Psychedelics Could Heal? Featuring Michael Pollan, Purdue University LibrariesPollan has dedicated the last 30 years to exploring and writing about the many ways in which the human and natural worlds intersect. He is the author of eight books, six of which have been New York Times best-sellers, including “Cooked,” which served as the basis for the 2016 Netflix miniseries of the same name; and “The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s-Eye View of the World” and “In Defense of Food,” both of which have inspired PBS documentaries. Pollan also appeared in the Oscar-nominated documentary “Food Inc.,” which was partially based on another of his books, “The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals.” His work has led him to be chosen by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, and has earned him many accolades within his field.

“How to Change Your Mind,” an immediate No. 1 New York Times best-seller, explores the revolutionary potential psychedelics hold in relieving depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction — afflictions that have been characteristically difficult to treat. Today, as scientists and researchers worldwide reevaluate hallucinogens and their potential healing powers, Pollan strives to provide some clarity on the safety and effectiveness of these substances.

“As the world of medicine continues to evolve, psychedelics and their role in treating mental illness have become a huge area of research interest,” Phillips said. “Given Purdue’s longstanding dedication to seeking out innovative solutions to improve the quality of life, we are very excited to hear Pollan’s take on an unconventional method of healing, as well as the medical and societal implications it may have.”

This event is sponsored by Purdue Libraries and School of Information Studies and Purdue Archives and Special Collections – which is home of the Betsy Gordon Psychoactive Substances Research Collection – and is co-sponsored by the Department of Chemistry, the Honors College, the College of Pharmacy, the College of Science, Purdue Graduate Student Government, and the Ideas Festival Committee.

Writer: Jaclyn Lawmaster, jlawmast@purdue.edu

Media Contact: Amy Patterson Neubert, 765-494-9723, apatterson@purdue.edu

Building Purdue - Aug. 27-Dec. 14 - Purdue Archives and Special CollectionsPurdue University Archives and Special Collections (ASC) latest exhibit highlights the physical growth and evolution of Purdue‘s West Lafayette campus since the University was founded in 1869. “Building Purdue: 150 Years of the West Lafayette Campus” will be on display from Monday, Aug. 27–Friday, Dec. 14 in the ASC (located on the fourth floor of the Humanities, Social Science, and Education, or HSSE, Library in Stewart Center). Exhibition hours are 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, and it is free and open to the public.

According to Digital Archivist Neal Harmeyer, who curated the exhibit, the display will include selected maps, photographs, documents, and artifacts that tell the story of campus—with a focus on its construction—as Purdue nears the sesquicentennial.

“Prominent topics are the fire of Heavilon Hall that inspired ‘One Brick Higher,’ the creation of the Purdue Memorial Union, the University during and after the World Wars, and the ever-changing nature of the campus all Boilermakers call home,” Harmeyer noted.

Later this year, Archives and Special Collections will launch the Campus Buildings and Facilities Project, a searchable database documenting the full history of the physical West Lafayette campus.

The exhibit helps Purdue Archives and Special Collections, a division of Purdue Libraries, kick off Purdue University’s Sesquicentennial Campaign, 150 Years of Giant Leaps. The campaign is a yearlong celebration of Purdue, its remarkable people, its unique history, and its visionary drive to meet the world’s future challenges. From Homecoming 2018 through Homecoming 2019, the Purdue community will spend the year celebrating its unique legacy, which has included giant leaps across every field of endeavor, and further advancing the mission set forth since its founding as a land-grant university in 1869. With the campaign serving as a springboard for a renewed commitment to growth, innovation, and discovery, Purdue’s call is simple: Whatever your pursuit, take Giant Leaps.

For more information about “Building Purdue: 150 Years of the West Lafayette Campus,” contact Harmeyer at harmeyna@purdue.edu.


A new exhibit, “The Sixties: A Decade of Triumph, Struggle, and Change” from Purdue University Archives and Special Collections, a division of Purdue Libraries, features a rich variety of artifacts, photographs, and documents, all from the Archives’ collections. According to Archivist for University History Adriana Harmeyer, the artifacts and displays spotlight the student experience at Purdue throughout the eventful decade.

The exhibit is free and open to the public from 1-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday in the Archives and Special Collections, located on the fourth floor of Humanities, Social Sciences, and Education (HSSE) Library, Stewart Center. An exhibit open house is set from 5-7 p.m. Wednesday, May 23 in the Archives and Special Collections, and the event will include light refreshments, activities for children, and a chance to meet the exhibit curators.

“Student scrapbooks, senior cords, and underground student newspapers appear alongside aeronautics textbooks, Rose Bowl tickets, and Grand Prix programs,” noted Harmeyer and Digital Preservation and Electronic Records Archivist Carly Dearborn, who both curated the exhibit. “Topics range from Purdue’s astronaut alumni to the 1969 centennial celebrations to student protests that marked the final years of the decade.”

“The Sixties: A Decade of Triumph, Struggle, and Change” is on display through Friday, Aug. 10 in Purdue University Archives and Special Collections.

For more information, contact Harmeyer at aharmey@purdue.edu or Dearborn at cdearbor@purdue.edu.

The Purdue University Libraries’ Virginia Kelly Karnes Archives and Special Collections (ASC) Research Center will be closed to the public Monday-Friday, Aug. 7-11 for inventory work. The ASC will re-open at 10 a.m. Monday Aug. 14.

For a comprehensive list of ASC and Purdue Libraries’ hours, please see www.lib.purdue.edu/hoursList.

“It is important to note the underlying search ranking algorithm is not changing, just the way those results are presented to the user.” — Dean Lingley, Chair, Libraries Search Oversight Committee

Purdue University Libraries SearchThis Friday, when searching for materials in and through Purdue University Libraries, you may notice a difference in the aesthetics of the search results’ display.

That’s because, as of Friday, July 21, “Libraries Search,” the large field on on the Purdue Libraries’ home page that instructs users to “Find Articles, Books, Media, Journals, Collections & Archives,” will take users to search results’ pages that display an updated interface based on a new, responsive web design — all done with the user experience mind.

At Purdue Libraries, a team of faculty and staff, the “Libraries Search Oversight Committee,” has been working on the update to the Libraries Search functionality, and Dean Lingley, chair of that group, provided a brief overview of the update to Libraries Search (see Q&A below) and explained how the update will affect users.

Q. What is “Libraries Search” at Purdue University Libraries?

Dean Lingley: Libraries search allows library patrons to not only search the local, physical and electronic holdings of Purdue University Libraries, but it also enables users to search millions more articles and citations from journal vendors and database providers–all in one easy-to-use interface. Libraries Search will link patrons directly to the electronic copy of the specific article, when available, licensed by Purdue Libraries. If the article is not available immediately in electronic format, the patron can request the material from another institution via a simple link to our Interlibrary Loan (ILL) service.

Q. How does it work to find materials in the libraries and at other library institutions?

Dean Lingley: Materials held locally are indexed locally, and articles and citations from journal and database vendors are stored in a central index. When a user performs a search, the results from our local collection and central index are blended to give the patron the search results most relevant to the search terms.

Q. Why is the interface being updated/changed?

Dean Lingley: The interface is being updated to keep up with web design changes that have been occurring over the past several years.

Q. How is the new interface different from the one that is replacing? What are the benefits of the updated interface to users?

Dean Lingley: The new interface is different in the fact that it features a responsive web design. This allows patrons to have similar search experiences whether they are searching from their desktops, tablets, or phones. The interface was redesigned by our vendor with user experience in mind, and the new interface should provide an easier-to-navigate set of search results for our patrons. It is important to note that the underlying search ranking algorithm is not changing, just the way those results are presented to the user.

Purdue University Libraries Search Interface Before July 21, 2017

Purdue University “Libraries Search”: Default Results Display Before July 21, 2017

Purdue University Libraries Search Interface On and After July 21, 2017

Purdue University “Libraries Search”: Results Display On and After July 21, 2017










Q. When will Purdue Libraries switch to the new interface permanently?

Dean Lingley: The new interface will become the default search interface this Friday (July 21). There is a feedback link available at the top of the new interface, so please feel free to use it for any comments or questions you might have.

Courtesy of Megan Huckaby, Purdue University Marketing and Media

The “Missing You” exhibit features many letters, photographs and this telegram, which is the last communication from Earhart before her departure for Howland Island. (Purdue University Photo/Megan Huckaby)

The “Missing You” exhibit features many letters, photographs and this telegram, which is the last communication from Earhart before her departure for Howland Island. (Purdue University Photo/Megan Huckaby)

A new exhibit from Purdue Libraries, Archives and Special Collections (ASC), explores Amelia Earhart’s last adventure through letters, telegrams, photographs, and logs sent during her famous 1937 world flight attempt.

“Missing You” opened on June 29 to mark the 80-year anniversary of Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan’s world flight. It will remain open through Dec. 8.

“The mystery surrounding Earhart’s disappearance often overshadows her legacy as a pioneer aviator, vocal advocate for women’s opportunities in the workplace, as one of the first equal partners in a power-couple marriage and as a role model for young women,” says Tracy Grimm, Purdue’s Barron Hilton Archivist for Flight and Space Exploration. “‘Missing You’ explores Amelia Earhart’s last adventure through letters, telegrams, and logs sent home during the 1937 world flight and examines the unique role Earhart played to promote women’s rights during the 1920s and 1930s.”

The exhibit includes never-before-seen letters that Noonan sent home during the flight, photographs Earhart took with her own camera, and a telegram, Earhart’s last communication, sent from Lae, New Guinea, prior to their departure for Howland Island.

A new exhibit from Purdue Libraries, Archives and Special Collections, will explore Amelia Earhart's last adventure through letters, telegrams, photographs and logs sent during her famous 1937 world flight attempt. (Purdue University Archives Photo)

A new exhibit from Purdue Libraries, Archives and Special Collections, explores Amelia Earhart’s last adventure through letters, telegrams, photographs, and logs sent during her famous 1937 world flight attempt. (Purdue University Archives Photo)

The exhibit, located in the Purdue Archives and Special Collections on the fourth floor of the Humanities, Social Science and Education (HSSE) Library in Stewart Center, is open free to the public.

Its summer hours are 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 1-4:30 p.m. on Friday. Fall hours will be 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. on Monday-Friday. Please note the ASC will be closed for inventory Monday-Friday, Aug. 7-11.

The exhibit is made possible through the support of Purdue Libraries’ Susan Bulkeley Butler Women’s Archives and the Barron Hilton Archives for Flight and Space Exploration.

Throughout the history of Purdue, its students have created and participated in many long-running traditions. What tradition is shown in this photo, and where did this activity occur?


On May 1, 1913, Purdue held its first May Day festivities as part of Gala Week, a celebration of spring and the end of the academic year.  Young female students and children from the community wore sandals and white dresses as they danced for crowds on the Oval, the open area of campus now known as Memorial Mall.  The May Day performances emphasized the arrival of springtime, so most included elaborate floral arrangements and may poles.  Here are a few more views of the 1913 festivities:

May Day celebrations occurred annually at Purdue until the 1920s, but Gala Week lived on until the 21st century.

Congratulations to all who figured out what was happening in the picture!  Check back for our next From the Archives photo on May 8!

In association with Purdue Today, we introduce our new From the Archives series, sharing glimpses of Purdue’s past through photographs from the Purdue Libraries Archives and Special Collections.  On alternating Mondays during the academic year, this feature will allow readers a chance to view a historical photograph and guess what is taking place in the image.  On Fridays, we will reveal the story behind the photograph, allowing readers to learn more about Purdue history and see if their guesses were correct.

To start the series, here is a moment in Purdue history related to another beginning.  What is happening, and, for an extra challenge, who is this person?


On Nov. 25, 1922, David Ross, Purdue trustee and co-namesake of Ross-Ade Stadium, laid the cornerstone for Purdue Memorial Union, a structure dedicated to the memory of those who fought and died in World War I.

The official groundbreaking for the Memorial Union building was held earlier that year on June 13, 1922, during Gala Week. Ross broke ground with a shovel, then the task was continued with a horse and plow in front of an excited crowd. Three months later came the cornerstone ceremony, with speakers including Indiana Gov. Warren T. McCray; Charles W. Morey, president of the Purdue Alumni Association; and Purdue President Edward Elliott.

Purdue Memorial Union officially opened two years later on Sept. 9, 1924.

Purdue Memorial Union shortly after construction

Congratulations to those of you who correctly identified the Purdue Memorial Union and David Ross! Our “From the Archives” photo series will continue to share views of Purdue history on alternating weeks throughout the spring. Our next photo will be online on April 10.

Welcome to Database of the Week, a feature from the Parrish Library. Each of these weekly snapshots will give you a very brief introduction to the basic features of one of our specialized subscription databases. This week’s database is AGRICOLA from the National Agricultural Library, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Link: http://guides.lib.purdue.edu/businessdatabases is the alphabetical list of the databases specially selected for those in a business program of study. Access the databases off-campus with your Purdue login and password.

Focus: AGRICOLA serves as the catalog and index to the collections of the National Agricultural Library, as well as a primary public source for worldwide access to agricultural information.

Search: AGRICOLA allows you to search using limits such as language, target audience, type of publication, and years of publication. It also offers a Full Text option; be aware that AGRICOLA offers few full test articles. Another useful feature of this database is that you can see your search history and combine searches.

Click here to see the basics of searching AGRICOLA or try our Guide on the Side with this link.

Why you should know this database: ARGICOLA covers materials in all formats and periods, including printed works from as far back as the 15th century. Topics covered by this database include all aspects of agriculture and allied disciplines such as animal and veterinary sciences, entomology, plant sciences, and forestry.

Why students should know this database: The AGRICOLA list of results shows an option to Find Similar for each title. The filters and tools provided by AGRICOLA simplify the search process making it easier for students to find what they need.

Cost: $2807.00 paid annually by the Purdue University Libraries.

Database of the Week comes to you from the Roland G. Parrish Library of Management & Economics. If you would like more information about this database, or if you would like a demonstration of it for a class, contact parrlib@purdue.edu.  Also let us know if you know of a colleague who would benefit from this weekly feature.

Since usage statistics are an important barometer when databases are up for renewal, tell us your favorite database, and we will gladly promote it. Send an email to parrlib@purdue.edu

Purdue Libraries links from Google Scholar are currently unavailable. We are actively working on resolving the issue. At this time, we have an estimated resolution date of 3/23/16. In the meantime we suggest using Libraries Search.