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Can We Stop Preaching to the Choir and Expand Our Base? By Innocent Awasom Texas Tech University Libraries.

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Presentation on theme: "Can We Stop Preaching to the Choir and Expand Our Base? By Innocent Awasom Texas Tech University Libraries."— Presentation transcript:

1 Can We Stop Preaching to the Choir and Expand Our Base? By Innocent Awasom Texas Tech University Libraries

2 Preaching to the choir or telling our stories within and without? My story – Zoologist / Environmental Scientist – Mix of Biological and LIS conferences ( before 2004) Post 2006 has been exclusively LIS related conferences February 2014 Publication Division of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) sponsored 30 Science Librarians to its annual conference in Chicago AAAS preaches to the public - Family open/citizen science day and exhibit What about the LIS community? Any non library world attendees here?

3 They saw it coming ! In 2000 Denise Davis et al, of the ALA Office of Research and Statistics sounded an alarm on the effect of impending retirement of baby boomers to the LIS profession In 2005 Stephen Tordello corroborated the above at the SLA Annual conference opining that the greatest retirement wave would occur between 2010 and 2020, creating a potential deficit of LIS grads between 2015 and 2020 In 2006 a Special Issue of Science and Technology Libraries was dedicated to Recruitment and retention of STEM Librarians

4 Retirement by Decade among Credentialed Librarians DecadeRetirees 1980 – , – , , ,200 (Source ALA Office of Research and Statistics 2000)

5 STEM Librarians affected the most? Stem job adverts always add academic background in the sciences preferred or experience in an academic library equally desirable STEM Librarian Search committees not having it easy.

6 Where do we go from here: Fire on the mountain …. Catch them young – Science majors working as student assistants Where do we Publish our works ? LIS publications only and why? Marketing and outreach through our stories, our narratives Attracting feral librarians – our narratives too may certainly help STEM librarian advocacy “Librocacy / Libravocacy” Advocate for competitive remuneration to keep STEM librarians from migrating to greener pastures

7 Catch them Young ACRL Brochure 2006/07! Science Majors Needed Great careers A Science Library Near You

8 Publish or Perish but where ? In exclusively LIS Publications ? Certainly Not. Let us diversify and publish in all STEM journals to bring more visibility to our works and efforts. Let our various faculty see what we can do for them in Information Literacy, Collection development, bibliometrics, embedded in research teams etc. Collaborate and publish with Faculty members in journals specific to their disciplines thus bringing visibility and recognition to STEM Librarians

9 Marketing and outreach through our stories – our narratives Narratives are non fictional personal stories about matters relevant to STEM librarianship such as our experiences in helping faculty and grad students draft their data management plans, use a bibliographic software to manage citations or review literature or search for that lost book or elusive article We tell stories around and through the products and services we offer such as Bonnie Swagger and John Dupuis who blog about science Librarianship (the undergraduate science librarian and confessions of a science librarian respectively) Bonnie SwaggerJohn Dupuis We provide metrics for scholarly productivity of our institution to the VP for Research

10 Attracting Feral Librarians into the STEM Librarianship There are quite a number of people with post graduates science degrees who are post docs and not getting faculty positions out there? Some institutions are offering Project Management certificates/degrees that they are enrolling into. What about a fellowship or library residency with PM certificate as a perk and who knows how many may end up staying as the tenure process is what it is Our colleague from Baylor gave us tips on how to work with Feral Librarians.

11 Library Advocacy – Libravocacy/Librocacy ? Advocate for competitive remuneration to keep STEM Librarians especially Bioinformaticians, Engineers and Computer scientists from migrating to greener pastures. Promotion and Tenure ranked journal list – LIS journals only ?

12 Parting Thoughts on question to the list serve A science degree doesn’t necessarily make you a good science librarian! May help to get a job (chemistry as few of them in the market).. Helps to speak their language, nomenclature, structures etc and grabs questions quickly. Outreach is the key. Embedded, active on curriculum committees, research teams, reinventing/shifting our expertize to scholarly communications, OAI, tenure metrics, data curation, Information literacy etc. (Ben Wagner)

13 Thank You Questions ?


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