The University of Holy Cross in New Orleans, LA, is a Films On Demand subscriber. We recently talked with Diana Schaubhut, director of library services at UHC’s Blaine S. Kern Library, about how her library handles technophobes, encourages usage among faculty, and more.
Tell us one way you’re helping users who may be hesitant to embrace technology take advantage of your library’s online resources.
We will walk them through it step by step. We also let them know that it is not always easy for us, either, the first time we use new technology, so they need not be frightened by it.
What is your favorite part of being a librarian?
In a library, something is always changing. You can’t really get bored. New technology, new products, new faces on the other side of the counter. As soon as you get the hang of a product, it upgrades. There is always something new to learn. I like that. I like helping others learn.
What have you done that has most impacted usage at your college?
We try to develop relationships with faculty. When faculty suggest resources to students, the students will use them.
How do you alert faculty to the new resources that your library acquires?
I am on both Academic Council and Graduate Council, so I spread the news to department chairs at those meetings. We announce new products at Faculty Assembly, and the librarians are sometimes invited to attend other department meetings. A “new acquisitions” list is sent out monthly via email.
I like to do three types of email with faculty. I used to send these monthly, but in the past few years, they have been few and far between. My plan is to start doing them regularly again this summer. “In Case You’re Interested” targets individual faculty members about products or websites that might appeal to them or their students. “Did You Know?” is a one-liner about a product or service. “Spotlight on” presents an overview of a database. I know it sounds hokey, but I’ve always gotten positive feedback from it.
Our school is small, so spreading news by word of mouth works well for us, too.
Tell us how you are making the most out of your library budget in these uncertain economic times.
We like products that multiple departments can use. We are fortunate to have a great state consortium, LOUIS. Developing good vendor relationships also plays a major role.
What role does social media play in your relationship with your patrons?
The director of marketing and communications handles social media at our school. We will sometimes send announcements to her. Our relationship with our patrons is face-to-face or by email.
What do you think is the library’s most important responsibility to your institution?
Our responsibility as stated in the library’s mission is to provide “materials, instruction, and services that meet curriculum needs and promote lifelong learning.” Our most important responsibility is to do that in accordance with the Marianite tradition and UHC mission, which is to educate the heart as well as the mind.
Tell us about your favorite YouTube video/LibGuide, etc., your library has created to promote a resource.
It might be the library tutorial if I ever finish it. In the meantime, I like Jenny’s UHC Gryphon Book Club LibGuide.
I am passionate about promoting reading for pleasure. I put “reading is fun” tabs on all my LibGuides. I have added “at the movies” for people I cannot convince to read the books.