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Hal Kirkwood, Purdue University Libraries

Hal Kirkwood, Purdue University Libraries

Hal Kirkwood, associate professor and business information specialist at the Roland G. Parrish Library of Management & Economics at Purdue University Libraries, was recently elected the president of the Special Libraries Association; he will serve as the SLA’s president in 2019.

Since joining SLA in 1992, Kirkwood has held several leadership roles within the association, including serving as president of the Indiana Chapter, chair of the Business & Finance Division, and director on the SLA Board of Directors (2012-2014). He will rejoin the SLA Board of Directors January 1, 2018, and serve as president-elect in 2018, president in 2019, and past president in 2020.

According to Kirkwood, the Special Libraries Association is an international and interdisciplinary organization representing information professionals in academic, corporate, government, intergovernmental, and other areas often not fully represented by the American Library Association, the other national organization that represents information professionals.

“As SLA president, I hope to influence its role, services, and mission by seeking creative solutions, developing unique collaborations, and listening to the members to fulfill their expectations and needs,” he noted.

For more information, see the official SLA release at www.sla.org/hal-kirkwood-lead-sla-2019/.

From the Archives: The Tuba Player

September 10th, 2017

It’s football season, which means it’s band season. The “All-American” Marching Band has been a Purdue tradition since the 1880s and has seen thousands of proud Boilermakers join its ranks. This young member of the band went on to become one of Purdue’s most recognizable graduates, but can you identify him before he was famous? Share your theories in the comments and check back on Friday for the full story!


Our mystery tuba player is Purdue class of 1928 graduate Orville Redenbacher, best known for revolutionizing the popcorn industry.  Redenbacher was a very active student, part of Alpha Gamma Rho, Agricultural Society, Agricultural Editor Society, Press Club, Band, Union Work, Class Track, Class Cross Country, Debris Yearbook Editor, and Exponent Editor.

Redenbacher didn’t slow down after graduation.  He worked in various agriculture-related positions across the state of Indiana until 1951, when he turned his full focus to the perfect popping corn.  Orville Redenbacher Popcorn launched in 1970 with its namesake front and center in all advertising.  The Purdue grad has been a recognizable face ever since!

Purdue Archives and Special Collections houses Redenbacher’s papers, including a selection of his personalized bow ties, donated by his grandson Kevin Fish.

Please join us again on September 25 for our next From the Archives post.

10th Archivist of the United States David S. FerrieroThe Archivist of the United States, David S. Ferriero, will share the many information preservation challenges and opportunities faced by the nation in the Inaugural Hiler Theater Lecture sponsored by the Purdue University Libraries.

Ferriero, confirmed as the 10th archivist of the United States in November 2009, will deliver, “Preserving the Past to Inform the Future: The View from the National Archives,” in the Hiler Theater, located in the Wilmeth Active Learning Center, at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28. The lecture is open free to the public.

At the entrance to the National Archives building in Washington, D.C., the monumental statues declare: “Study the Past” and “What is Past is Prologue.” According to Ferriero, in 1934, when Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the legislation that created the agency responsible for government records, he had in mind a vision of the power and responsibility of the American people to use those records in the ongoing work of creating a more perfect union.

“At the dedication of his Presidential Library, FDR stated, ‘It seems to me that the dedication of a library is itself an act of faith. To bring together the records of the past and to house them in a building where they will be preserved for the use of men and women in the future, a Nation must believe in three things. It must believe in the past. It must believe in the future. It must, above all, believe in the capacity of its own people so to learn from the past that they can gain in judgment in creating their own future.’ Now, 83 years later, the world is a very different place,” Ferriero noted. “The government has grown, the methods of creation and dissemination of information continue to multiply, the attitudes toward privacy and secrecy shift, citizen expectations for access and participation in their government increase, and the veracity of information available is under attack. This view from Washington will share the challenges and opportunities before us as we strengthen FDR’s original vision of the mission of the National Archives.”

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) preserves, and provides access to, the records of the U.S. Government and has 43 facilities across the country, including 14 Presidential Libraries, containing approximately 13 billion pages of textual records; 42 million photographs; miles and miles of film and video; and an ever-increasing number of electronic records. The Rotunda of the National Archives Building in downtown Washington, D.C., displays the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence.

Before his 2009 confirmation as the 10th U.S. Archivist, Ferriero served as the Andrew W. Mellon Director of the New York Public Libraries and held top library positions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Duke University. Ferriero earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English literature from Northeastern University and a master’s degree from the Simmons College of Library and Information Science. He also served as a Navy hospital corpsman in Vietnam.

For more information, contact Teresa Koltzenburg, director of strategic communication, Purdue University Libraries, at (765) 494-0069 or via email at tkoltzen@purdue.edu.

Electronic Resources Alert

September 5th, 2017

LibGuides and the Databases A-Z list are currently experiencing an outage. Springshare, the company that makes these products, is aware of the issue and expects a resolution soon.

The newest issue of the Journal of Purdue Undergraduate Research, Volume 7 (2017), debuts this week online and in print. This volume, like all previous volumes, is available online and open access. Below is a first-person account of an experience with undergraduate research and the subsequent publication process via JPUR with the student featured on the cover, Jack VanSchaik, who investigates spatial soundscape ecology on page 65 of the volume. The open access version of his article may be found here.


What is undergraduate research? I first heard about it at a Purdue summer biology camp during high school. Immediately, I knew it was something I wanted to pursue in college. After being accepted to Purdue, I was determined to participate in research my freshman year. However, it proved more difficult than I imagined, and at first, I was rejected due to lack of experience. Then it was hard to find a project that was compatible with my interests and coursework.

However, halfway through my freshman year I received a call from Dr. Mark Ward of the Statistics Department encouraging me to apply to his Sophomore Statistics Living Learning Community (LLC). I did and was accepted into what turned out to be a vital experience of my undergraduate career. Dr. Ward collaborated with professors from a variety fields and disciplines to create undergraduate-friendly research opportunities for LLC students. One professor’s project fascinated me. It was Dr. Bryan Pijanowski and his idea of soundscape ecology. Dr. Pijanowski introduced me to his lab, the Center for Global Soundscapes, where I found my undergraduate research project! I applied my newfound knowledge of big data from my LLC courses to my areas of interest: sound and the environment. I spent a year and a summer at Purdue completing my research project. This experience opened up doors for me to be involved in other projects at the Center, working on statistics, education, and community outreach. I ended up staying after my sophomore year at LLC to continue work on other projects.

When my research neared completion, I submitted it to the Journal of Purdue Undergraduate Research (JPUR). I was extremely excited when my project was selected for a full article! It was reassuring to know that after so many hours, my research was worth publishing. However, there was still a lot of work to do. I had to format, edit, and finalize my article. Working with JPUR gave me the opportunity to experience something I had only heard about from Dr. Pijanowski, Dr. Ward, and so many graduate students—paper writing. Participating in the writing and publishing process gave me a glimpse into academic research and ultimately helped me decide to attend graduate school.

Not only did working with JPUR help me decide my future path, but there are several benefits to being published as an undergrad. Graduate schools notice an applicant’s research experience, and it demonstrates his or her capacity to produce publishable work. Similarly, it demonstrates to a company an applicant’s ability to see a substantial project through to its end. Moreover, getting one’s work published also can be a personal milestone. However, I think the most important benefit for publishing one’s research is for the science itself. Every piece of new knowledge, regardless of the field, academic standing, flashiness (the list goes on…), is important. Science is constantly driven forward by humanity’s pursuit of knowledge. Every pursuit of knowledge pushes science forward. When that pursuit stops, science stops, and that cannot happen!

Purdue Libraries to host the prominent EDC Program for GIS Research

Purdue University has recently been designated an Esri Development Center (EDC Program) by Esri, the developer of the ArcGIS mapping and spatial analytics software. According to Esri, the program provides special status and benefits “to a select few leading university departments that challenge their students to develop innovative applications based upon the ArcGIS platform.” The opportunity to participate in the EDC program will augment GIS (Geographic Information Systems) research and activities currently conducted at Purdue University.

As an EDC Program, faculty and students gain special access to Esri’s training and support application platform, which connects users from any field of academic research. As a member of the program, Purdue University students and faculty can benefit from exclusive professional development in data integration and geospatial analysis and training.

This fall, Purdue Libraries will sponsor the EDC GIS Development Contest, in which students participating in the EDC program will have the opportunity to compete for Purdue University’s EDC Student of the Year Award.

According to Assistant Professor and GIS Specialist at Purdue University Libraries Nicole Kong, the winner will have the chance to be internationally recognized at the annual Esri Developer Summit. All Purdue students are eligible to participate in the EDC Program and GIS contest, and the winner will be announced on Purdue Libraries’ annual GIS Day event, which is set for Thursday, Nov. 9 in Stewart Center, room 214.

“Purdue University was selected to participate in this prestigious program based on outstanding teaching and research in GIS. The EDC Program provides a centralized place to connect developers and GIS users across disciplines, which will promote many fruitful collaborations,” Kong noted.

More information about the EDC Student of the Year Award Contest will be forthcoming. For more information, contact Kong at (765) 496-9474 or via email at kongn@purdue.edu.

From the Archives: A Beginning

August 27th, 2017


The From the Archives photo series returns with the start of the new school year. On alternating Mondays throughout the academic year, we will feature a photo from Purdue Libraries Archives and Special Collections in conjunction with Purdue Today and give readers a chance to answer what’s taking place in the image. The full story behind the photo will be revealed on the following Friday.

To kick off a new year, we look at a beginning.  Can you identify this Purdue location and tell us what – aside from crowds of students – is missing from the finished space?  Share your theories in the comments and we’ll reveal the full story on Friday!


In 1954, construction began on Purdue’s Memorial Center, a new campus building that would incorporate the existing University Library, a newly reconstructed Fowler Hall, and new classroom and activity space.  Construction finished in 1958 and crowds filled the new space for its dedication ceremony.

When Memorial Center first opened it was missing its most striking feature, “The Spirit of the Land Grant College” mural above what is now the entrance to the Humanities, Social Science, and Education Library.  The mural was completed and dedicated on October 4, 1961.

In 1972, the building was renamed in honor of University Treasurer R.B. Stewart, becoming the Stewart Center we know today.

Congratulations to everyone who commented and recognized this building!  Please join us again on Monday, September 11, and on alternating Mondays throughout the semester as we present mystery photos From the Archives.

Electronic Resources Alert

August 25th, 2017

EBSCO databases are currently returning errors when attempting to search. We have a ticket into their support team. If you need assistance in the meantime, please Ask a Librarian.

The unification at Purdue Northwest (PNW) and the coming separation of Indiana University (IU) and Purdue at IPFW (Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne) are resulting in significant changes at those campuses. For the libraries at Purdue Northwest, soon-to-be Purdue Fort Wayne, and Purdue West Lafayette, these changes come at a time when libraries are in flux as more resources and services are available online. These circumstances create an opportunity to explore strategies to more fully integrate the three libraries.

As a commitment to positive change, the Purdue University Office of the Provost has created a Purdue System Library Working Group.

Principles for the work of this group are outlined below.

The goal—enhance the research and learning at each campus:

  • Libraries are crucial to the work of universities;
  • Faculty and students at each campus need quick and easy access to information and materials;
  • The campus members on this group are committed to collaboration;
  • The workloads of faculty and staff in the libraries will be considered and their input will be valued; and
  • Communication with faculty/staff/students is important.

Charge to the Purdue System Library Working Group

Members of the task force include:

  • Rebecca Richardson, Assistant Dean for Collections and Access (West Lafayette)
  • Scott Brandt, Interim Associate Dean for Research (West Lafayette)
  • Alexis Macklin, Dean (Purdue Fort Wayne)
  • Tammy Guerrero, Director of University Libraries (Purdue Northwest)
  • Rob Wynkoop, Managing Director Procurement Services will represent the Office of the Treasurer (West Lafayette)
  • Candiss Vibbert, Associate Provost for Special Initiatives, will represent the Provost Office (West Lafayette)

Candiss Vibbert and Alex Macklin will serve as co-chairs for the Working Group.

To see full charge, see Purdue System Library Working Group Charge on the Purdue Libraries’ website.

The Purdue System Library Working Group is asked to explore the following points:

  • What services or relationships are needed that would improve library services?
  • What are the potential benefits of a system-wide approach?
  • Are there any perceived disadvantages to operating as a system library? How might these issues be managed?
  • How can library faculty and staff benefit from the Purdue System Library?

After the data is provided to answer these questions, the larger more inclusive questions follow:

  • What would a system library look like in terms of organizational structure; shared services, IT backbone, and campus responsibilities etc.?
  • What investments, one-time and recurring, would be necessary to develop the Purdue System Library?
  • How does a steady state budget for the Purdue System Library compare to the current provision of library services (FY18) on the three separate operating budgets for the campuses?
  • If the Purdue System Library is pursued, what would be the timeline for actions and investments? What are the key milestones?

Questions and comments to assist the work of this group are encouraged. Contact one of the individuals below for comments or questions.

  • At PNW Tammy Guerrero @ tsguerre@pnw.edu
  • At IPFW Alexis Macklin @  macklina@ipfw.edu
  • At PWL Rebecca Richardson @ rarichar@purdue.edu

Starting Monday, Aug. 21, the Wilmeth Active Learning Center, which houses the Library of Engineering and Science, will be open 24 hours per day, seven days a week (most of the year) with Purdue University ID (PUID) swipe access. Hicks Undergraduate Library will provide 24/7 access through Sunday, Aug. 20.

For a comprehensive list of Purdue Libraries’ hours, visit www.lib.purdue.edu/hoursList.