Ideas for Improvement

You may have noticed that there’s a survey going on in the library – there are table tents, flyers, and images on the digital displays (those TVs that hang from the walls everywhere) telling you to take the survey and share your opinions with us. Why should you?

A puppy implores you to win a $50 gift card.

The puppy wants you to share, and the puppy wants you to win.

Improving Library Services

One reason you should take the library survey is so that we know what’s working for you and what isn’t. If the answers we receive on the survey tell us that something we’re doing is helpful to most people, we can make sure we keep providing that service successfully. If the answers we receive tell us that something needs to be fixed or improved, we can work on making it better based on what you tell us. There are lots of other ways you can share your opinions with us – like this feedback form, or messaging us on Twitter – but if you use this survey, we can have everyone’s answers to standardized questions in one place, and that makes it easier to make decisions!

Union Bookstore Gift Card

The other reason you should take the survey is that your participation puts you in the running for a $50 Union Bookstore gift card. Fifty whole dollars! What can you buy with $50? That will get you:

Or anything else you can think of that’s available in the Union Bookstore (maybe a textbook for next semester?).

All your library and sweatpants dreams can come true, but you have to take the survey to get there. We appreciate everyone who takes the time to share their opinions and we look forward to seeing what you have to say.

 

 

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April is National Poetry Month!

Fellow UGL’ers, it’s April and spring is finally here! That means—it is also National Poetry Month! In honor of all that is poetic, the UGL’s own graduate assistants will share their favorite poet, poem, or collection of poems.

Cover Art of "Annabel Lee" by Edgar Allan Poe

“Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allan Poe

“Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allan Poe © All Rights Reserved
“This poem was the very first one that caught my attention in elementary school and it’s been on my favorite ever since.” -Quetzalli

I was a child and she was a child,
In this kingdom by the sea,
But we loved with a love that was more than love—
I and my Annabel Lee—
With a love that the wingèd seraphs of Heaven
Coveted her and me.”

Looking for more works by Edgar Allan Poe? Click here!

“Reflections on Ice-Breaking” by Ogden Nash ©  All Rights Reserved
“My favorite poem is Ogden Nash’s ‘Reflections on Ice-Breaking.’ Known for his pithy and witty poems, Nash uses wordplay to create comedy with some innate truth to it.” – Zoe

“Candy
is dandy
But liquor
is quicker.”

For other works by Ogden Nash, be sure to check out the library catalog.

Cover art of A Light in the Attic

A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein

“Overdues” by Shel Silverstein © All Rights Reserved
“I’m not really a poetry person, but I do loves me some Shel Silverstein. Here is an excerpt from A Light in the Attic.” -Angeline

“What do I do?
What do I do?
This library book is 42
Years overdue.
I admit that it’s mine
But I can’t pay the fine-
Should I turn it in
Or hide it again?
What do I do?
What do I do?”

Like what you see? Check out the whole book, A Light in the Attic.

“Having a Coke with You” by Frank O’Hara ©  All Rights Reserved
“This poem is a frank and clear exploration of the giddiness of being in love (especially with someone new) and the ways that every little aspect of a person can take on a grandiose shining light in the wash of love.” – Tad

“Having a Coke with You
is even more fun than going to San Sebastian, Irún, Hendaye, Biarritz, Bayonne
or being sick to my stomach on the Travesera de Gracia in Barcelona”

Check out the author, Frank O’Hara, reading this poem here.

Cover art of Loose Woman

Loose Woman by Sandra Cisneros

Loose Woman by Sandra Cisneros © All Rights Reserved
“An American writer, she is also the author of The House on Mango Street. She is just great!”- Christina

You bring out the Mexican in me.
The hunkered thick dark spiral.
The core of a heart howl.
The bitter bile.
The tequila lagrimas on Saturday all
through next weekend Sunday.

Check out other works by Sandra Cisneros in our catalog.

“Brown Penny” by William Butler Yeats © All Rights Reserved
“The major symbol in this poem is the ‘brown penny.’  To find out whether or not he is in love, the man flips a penny. He takes a chance. As with flipping a penny, the young man doesn’t know how it will land or what the future holds. But he risks it for love.” – Linsy

I whispered, ‘I am too young,’
And then, ‘I am old enough’;
Wherefore I threw a penny
To find out if I might love.

Explore more of William Butler Yeats in our library catalog.

“Self-Portrait at 28″ by David Berman © All Rights Reserved
“David Berman is probably best known as the gravel voiced songwriter behind the (now-defunct) band Silver Jews, but he’s also a damn good poet on paper. His excellent book of poetry, Actual Air, contains one of my favorite poems, ‘Self-Portrait at 28.’ The last couple stanzas get me every time.” – Ira

“You see,
his mind can only hold one thought at a time
and when he finally hears me call his name
he looks up and cocks his head
and for a single moment
my voice is everything:
Self-portrait at 28.”

There you have it, folks! All of these wonderful poems are available through the library catalog. Happy Poetry Month!

 

Note: These works are not owned by the library

© All Rights Reserved

 

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Inclusive Illinois Week

By this time of the academic year, you’ve probably heard about Inclusive Illinois on campus. Inclusivity is a pretty big deal around the University of Illinois. It’s so central to the University as an institution that campus events are scheduled each semester to demonstrate the University’s commitment, celebrate its achievements, and educate the campus and community about diversity and inclusivity.

Sticky notes describing how students are committed to an Inclusive Illinois

Inclusive Illinois Day installment in September at the School of Social Work

If you missed Inclusive Illinois Day last semester, you can check out our blog post explaining exactly what Inclusive Illinois is all about. Also, take a look at photos of Inclusive Illinois Day events across campus.

This week, there are a lot of great events to raise awareness and celebrate inclusivity and diversity here at University of Illinois. From the FashionAble Fundraiser at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts to the Celebration of Women art exhibit or the Illini baseball tailgate and game, there is an Inclusive Illinois event for everyone! Be sure to check out the next installment of the Chancellor’s Lecture Series on Diversity and Cultural Understanding given by best-selling author and activist Zach Wahls.

Today, you’re invited to join the first #ManyVoices Conversation at locations across campus and share what an inclusive community means to you. The #ManyVoices organizers will be waiting to hear your story at the following locations and times:

  • 9am-11am: Business Instructional Facility
  • 11am-2pm: Henry Administration Quad Side
  • 11am-1pm: Beckman Cafe
  • 3pm-5pm: Activities Recreation Center

For more information and a full calendar of events, go to the Inclusive Illinois website. You can also sign the online pledge to make your commitment to an Inclusive Illinois.

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Mom Movies

This weekend (April 4-6) is Mom’s Weekend! Are you ready for all moms, all the time? Here’s a round-up of official Mom’s Weekend resources, as well as some mom-themed movies you can watch in your downtime, whether your mom is visiting this weekend or not.

Keep calm and have fun with mom.

The UGL can help!

Your first stop in Mom’s Weekend planning should be consulting the official Mom’s Weekend site. It’ll give you an overview of what’s happening, so you can get an idea of what kind of events you want to attend. When it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty and plan your agenda, the Mom’s Weekend calendar will provide you with more details about times, locations, and prices. It has every single campus event you and your mom could possibly dream of.

Those will give you all the basic information you need. For extra credit, you can dig into the Daily Illini’s Mom’s Weekend Guide, for interviews and background on the scheduled events (as well as potential alternative plans). You can also find more information about the U of I Mom’s Association, who help plan and coordinate Mom’s Weekend, on their new official site.

The events that are lined up will be a lot of fun, but your mom (and you!) will probably want to rest at some point. For when you’re just hanging out, here are some movies and shows about moms that you can watch together. And if you don’t have a mom visiting you this weekend, grab a friend’s mom. They like to watch movies, too.

Gilmore Girls Seasons 1-7 starring Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel
Brave starring Emma Thompson and Kelly MacDonald
The Namesake starring Tabu and Kal Penn
Terms of Endearment starring Shirley MacClaine and Debra Winger
Mommy Dearest starring Faye Dunaway
Stepmom starring Susan Sarandon and Julia Roberts
The Waterboy starring Adam Sandler and Kathy Bates
Freaky Friday starring Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan

What’s your favorite mom movie to watch? By that we mean your favorite movie to watch with mom, or your favorite movie with a mom in it. Let us know in the comments, and have a good weekend!

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An Excuse to Play with Your Food

It’s no joke – the annual Edible Book Festival is happening again on April 1st. This is your chance to show your creativity in culinary codex* crafting – read on to find out how.

A huge brownie decorated to resemble a book cover.

A tasty rendition of an Encyclopedia Brown(ie) book by Christine Jenkins

The Edible Book Festival is a worldwide celebration that brings food and books together. It’s observed every year on or around the April 1st birthday of famed French food philosopher/ writer Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin. He made books out of food by writing about food, and the Edible Book Festival puts a twist on this: participants make books out of real, actual food. That’s why they’re called “edible!” Books made for the festival can be inspired by books, or resemble a book physically by having text or pages.

If you’re wondering what kind of creations people make for this festival, you can look at the UIUC Library’s gallery of festival entries from past years. The UIUC Library has held an Edible Book Festival event every year since 2006, and their galleries are full of artfully created reproductions, re-imaginings, and puns on popular books. After the galleries inspire you to participate in this year’s festival (which they undoubtedly will), use this online form to register and bring your skills to the table. A panel of judges will determine winners in many different categories, and you might win a prize!

If you don’t have time to register for the festival, you can still bring an entry; preregistration just helps the library plan the event. And if you don’t have time to make an edible book this year, all Champaign-Urbana folks are welcome to participate by admiring and eating the books that do get made!

The details of this year’s events:

Schedule for the Edible Book Festival on Tuesday, April 1, 2014

  • 8-10 am - Participants drop off edible entries at the University YMCA (located at 1001 S. Wright St., Champaign)
  • 10-11:30 am – Judging and photography
  • 11:30 am – Public viewing begins
  • 12:15 pm – Welcome and judges’ commentary
  • 12:45 pm – Eating of books!
Cookies shaped and decorated to resemble illustrations from a children's book

Mary Dubb’s ‘Extra Yarn’ illustration cookies

More details of the UIUC festival can be found on the official UIUC festival website.  There’s also a Facebook page, for more inspiration and updates. We can’t wait to see what you make!

*A codex is a specific form that a book can take. Librarians use a lot of different words for books. It’s kind of our thing.

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Spring Break Hours!

Now that it’s officially spring, we can’t wait to say goodbye to any mention of a polar vortex and say hello to spring break! Whether you’re heading south for some sunshine or sticking around C-U, you’ve earned a well-deserved week off. The UGL will be taking some time off, too, with shorter hours over spring break.

Photo of vacationers on Semaphore Beach, South Australia circa 1950

Well, this looks like fun! Semaphore Beach, South Australia. Photo courtesy of State Library of South Australia via Flickr

Here are the UGL’s hours over spring break. You can also check out when other campus libraries are open over break:

  • Friday, March 21: The UGL closes at 7pm
  • Saturday, March 22: All campus libraries are closed.
  • Sunday, March 23: All campus libraries are closed.
  • Monday, March 24-Friday, March 28: The UGL will be open daily from 8:30am to 5pm. Please note that the media collection closes at 4:30pm.
  • Saturday, March 29: All campus libraries are closed
  • Sunday, March 30: The UGL opens at 1pm, then resumes regular semester hours.

From all of us here at the UGL, we hope you have a safe and relaxing break!

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St. Patty’s is here!

Hello UGLers, as you can tell by the seas of green today, it is St. Patrick’s Day! Are we all wearing our green today? You bet we are! There are many ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s day, so here at the UGL we decided to find all things Irish for your celebration.

The Green River in Chicago

The Green River in Chicago. Photo courtesy of bhenak via Flickr

You can start off your day by heading over to Crane Alley for some Irish-inspired food. They are having that especially for today! Located in downtown Urbana, Crane Alley is a great restaurant to share a meal with your friends.

If you’re feeling like staying in tonight, why not make a night of it with a movie (or movie marathon) and some friends. The UGL has their media collection in the lower level and we have found some titles that will be sure to give you different perspectives on Ireland without having to leave your comfy couch.

First, we have “Angela’s Ashes.” A movie that was based off the memoirs of Irish writer, Frank McCourt. It is the story of his family’s struggles with poverty and his childhood in Ireland and New York.

Angela’s Ashes

If this is not your style, fear not! we have other suggestions. Such as “P.S I Love You.” OK, we admit, this is not related to St. Patrick’s day, but you cannot beat the Irish scenery in this movie. Also, Hillary Swank and Gerard Butler are in it, so you pretty much have to watch it.

P.S I love you movie

P.S I love You

Other movies that you might find interesting are “Leap Year” and “The Commitments.”

Sometimes, you just want to stay in with a good book, so of course, the UGL has recommendations for those as well! Our first recommendation is a cookbook! because there is no better way to spend the holiday than to cook up some great Irish food with some friends. How about “The Irish Heritage Cookbook” or “Rachel’s Irish Family Food: 120 classic recipes from my home to yours.” Gather your friends, turn on some Celtic music, and try your hand at these recipes.

Rachel's Irish Family Food cooking book

Rachel’s Irish Family Food

Want to travel to Ireland without having to pay all that airfare? Try “Travelers’ Trails in Ireland.” Read about 20 trails that will guide you on a tour of all the culture and beautiful scenery that Ireland has to offer! Other titles to check out might be “Silver Linings: Travels around Northern Ireland“, and “Memory Ireland.”

Travellers' Travels in Ireland  book

Travellers’ Travels in Ireland

The UGL and the other libraries on campus have tons of more books for you, so, what are you waiting for? Check it out and have a great St. Patrick’s Day!

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Spotlight On…CQ Researcher

You’ve got a paper coming up, and you don’t have a topic yet. The paper has to be about a current issue that’s controversial, or maybe you have to debate the pros and cons of something – but there are so many issues in the world! How do you know what to choose and where to start? If you come to the UGL’s website, we have a resource that can help you solve all these problems. It’s called CQ Researcher.

What and where is CQ Researcher?

CQ Researcher is one of the many databases that the library provides for you to use. It’s a little different from other databases you may have used, because it’s designed to make it easy for you to browse articles by topic. The topics that articles in CQ Researcher cover range from education issues (like homeschooling) to disputes over international law (like the ethics of war), but all have been topics of intense discussion and debate in the recent past or present.

To get to CQ Researcher, start at the UGL homepage and click the Find Articles button that you see under the Easy Search box. That will take you to the Find Articles guide, where we list some of our databases by type. CQ Researcher is a general database, so you can find a link to it in the first section that’s labelled “Starting Points (Multi-Subject Databases).”

CQ Researcher should be the third database listed under Starting Points.

What can I find in CQ Researcher?

Every topic covered in CQ Researcher will be explained in a report – a long article that provides an overview of the topic,  including background information, current controversies or problems, and potential outcomes. An editorial piece from each side of the argument – a “pro” and a “con” position – are also provided by an expert on the topic. Other helpful features include timelines of major events, and lists of suggested sources for further research. This information could be used to help you figure out what specific aspects of a general topic you’re most interested in, where you should look for more information, or how a specific issue fits into a larger issue or trend.

You can navigate through the different kinds of information provided using the menu on the left side, or explore related issues using the Issue Tracker menu on the right.

How can I use CQ Researcher?

If you already have an idea of what you’re interested in, the main page of CQ Researcher has a search feature in the upper-right hand corner of the screen. If you don’t have an idea yet, don’t worry – it also has options to browse through information by what’s been added most recently, or by general area of interest (like the ‘education’ and ‘international law’ areas we mentioned above). As you browse or search, CQ Researcher will offer suggestions for related topic in a menu on the right-hand side of the screen.

The search box is in the top-right corner, and the Browse options are in the main navigation menu under the heading.

So, if you’re trying to find an interesting, contemporary debate to explore for an assignment, or you’ve already got one and need ideas for how to approach it, find your way to the UGL homepage and try CQ Researcher. There’s also that helpful Ask-A-Librarian chat box on the UGL page, so if you should get stuck, a librarian is only a click away! We’ll be happy to help you use this or any other library resource.

Find other posts in the Spotlight On… series here.

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Warm up for Spring Break at the UGL

Hey UGL-ers! Here in Chambana, it’s finally starting to warm up. Which means there’s only one thing on our minds—spring break! Whether you’re staying in town to catch up on sleep or packing for an exotic adventure, the UGL has all the resources you need to make this spring break the best yet.

Cover of Foder's Los Cabos guidebook

Where can you snorkel in Los Cabos? Find out here!

If you’re heading out of town for spring break this year, check out the UGL’s collection of travel guides to read up on your favorite destination. Where is the best place to hike in Wisconsin? Which towns in Spain are must-sees? Where can you snorkel in Los Cabos? All your travel questions can be answered in these handy guidebooks.

Traveling out of the country? Learn a few phrases or brush up on your conversation skills in hundreds of languages for FREE using our Tell Me More language software. Take a look at our previous blog post to learn how to use this great resource.

Cover of The Globetrotter Diaries

Get inspired for an adventure of your own.

If your spring break plans look a lot like your pillow, the UGL can bring out your inner hitchhiker while you catch some Z’s right here at home. Check out our Pinterest board that highlights a few of our favorite books about travel writing and photography, as well as the guidebooks we mentioned above.

The Hobbit DVD cover

“Not all who wander are lost.”

As always, the UGL’s collection of movies, TV shows, and audio books are ready to cure your travel bug from the comfort of your couch. Need a European adventure? Live vicariously through every James Bond film. Feeling wanderlust? Trek through Middle-earth with a Lord of the Rings marathon. Or, get pumped for the release of the next Captain America film with your Avenger pals. Stock up on all your favorites before break!

If you’re looking for a thrilling page-turner to pass some time over break, be on the lookout for our up-coming display “Road Trip with a Book.” We’ll surprise you with a great new read!

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Celebrating Women’s History Month!

March is here and midterms are almost over, but March is also Women’s History month! Be prepared to learn about some amazing and inspirational women and some resources available from the library.

Sally Ride

Sally Ride. The First American woman in space

First, we have Sally Ride. Sally was a former astronaut and a physicist. She became the first American woman in space. Her accomplishments have paved the way for women in NASA and have inspired people around the world. Sally died in 2012 at the age of 61, but her legacy will forever live on. To find out more about her life and accomplishments, check out some books about her life available in our catalog.

Carol Moseley Braun

Carol Moseley Braun

Carol Moseley Braun is former representative of the Illinois senate. She was the first African-American woman to be elected to the United States Senate. Ms. Braun was also nominated by former President Bill Clinton to be U.S. ambassador to New Zealand. She currently resides in Chicago. For more information on Ms. Braun, be sure to check out her page on the congress website.

Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo is a Mexican artist from the surrealist movement in the 1930’s. She had a difficult but  exciting life, and most importantly, she was a creative person and painter who celebrated her Mexican culture and heritage. If you would like to know more about Frida and her life, Credo reference has more information.

Alice Paul

Alice Paul. American Suffragist

Alice Paul was an American suffragist who fought for a woman’s right to vote. Along with the help of other suffragists, Alice Paul’s activism led to the passage of the 19th amendment. Because of the 19th amendment, women were finally able to have the right to vote in this country.  To learn more about Alice Paul, be sure to check out the  Women and Social Movements in the United States database available through the UIUC catalog!

These are just a few of the many incredible women out there. For more information be sure to check out some subject guides on the topic such as women in politics or the official government website for Women’s History Month.

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