Welcome Back UIUC!

Welcome back fellow UGL’ers! Here at the UGL, we hope that you had a great summer filled with sunshine and spending time with friends and family. As you come back to UIUC, whether you are a returning student or a freshman, you’ll see some changes around campus. The UGL got a makeover over the summer, and we hope you like our new and improved look. Let’s take a tour – first, we have the brand new hard-wood floor and carpet on the upper-level.

The newly renovated UGL. Photo Courtesy of the UGL Media Commons

The newly renovated UGL. Photo Courtesy of the UGL Media Commons

Next, the tables on the upper level now have power hubs on top. This way, you’ll have no problem connecting all your devices. They even have usb ports to help charge your phones.

The new power outlets at the tables. Photo Courtesy of the UGL Media Commons

The new power outlets at the tables. Photo Courtesy of the UGL Media Commons

The carpet has been replaced and our large tables are ready for students and all their homework and project needs.

The newly renovated carpet at the UGL. Photo courtesy of Q. Barrientos

The newly renovated carpet at the UGL. Photo courtesy of Q. Barrientos

Be sure to check out the UGL’s Loanable Technology Desk. Students can check out Chromebooks, calculators, digital cameras, and much more for your class and group project needs. Be sure and browse our list of items available.

One of our student workers at the Loanable Technology Desk. Photo Courtesy of Janelle Sander.

One of our student workers at the Loanable Technology Desk. Photo Courtesy of Janelle Sander.

Are you in the mood for a movie marathon or binge watching of your favorite TV show? The UGL’s lower level has a media collection for all your watching needs. All you need is your I-Card to check them out.

The changes at the UGL have not only been physical, but there have also been changes with the hours.  Also note that library hours will vary for the first 2 weeks of classes:

-August 25-28th, Open 8 AM to midnight.
-August 29th, Open from 8AM to 10PM
-August 30th, Open from 10 AM to 10PM
-August 31st, Open from 10AM to midnight
-Closed September 1st. (Labor Day)
-September 2nd-4th, Open 8AM to midnight
-September 5th, Open 8AM-10PM
-September 6th, Open 10AM to 10PM

And finally, starting September 7th, the UGL will be open at 8AM for regular semester hours and be open 24 hours a day until Friday at midnight. on Saturdays, the UGL will be open from 10AM to midnight.

Be on the lookout for upcoming posts about the services and items the UGL has to offer. Come visit us and remember that if you have any questions, let us know. We are here to help you.

 

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Finals week is here!

It’s that time of the semester again. Yup, finals week is here. Here at the UGL, we know you’re scrambling to finish last minute papers and projects. People are starting to get a bit anxious, but no worries. The UGL is here to help, always. And by always we mean we’re not closing until finals are over.

The UGL is open at night. All night.

We’re open forever. Never leave us.

Beginning today, May 8th, the UGL will be open 24 hours – no closing between 2 AM and 10 AM like usual, so you can do that last-minute cramming. We’ll be open all the way through May 17th, when we will close early at 7 P.M. and start our summer hours. That’s right folks. We’re open that whole time. Take advantage of it and come in and be productive.

This, too, shall pass. Finals will come to an end. Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

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Return of the Dogs

They’re back! Rejoice! Therapy Dogs will be returning to UIUC libraries during finals week to soothe all your exam woes (or help you celebrate any impending graduations). We’ve also got a guest star this semester. Who’s excited about…therapy cats?

Library Therapy Dog Program, May 8th, 12th, and 13th

If you haven’t attended a therapy dog event before, allow us to inform you about what they are. Many studies have shown that interacting with animals can reduce stress levels (and, in turn, improve academic performance). Based on this, the UIUC libraries work with CU Canine Connection, a local therapy dog group, to bring animals to you in places where you are often stressed (ie the library – sorry about the stress).

Sam, Tycho, and Raven, friendly doggies from past semesters, will all be returning to various libraries during finals week so you can reconnect and get your snuggles. Neo regretfullly cannot make it this semester, but sends his love from afar and will catch you next time. To refresh your memory on who’s who (or to get a primer before you meet them for this first time) you can revisit our previous blog posts about therapy dogs. We also have three new visitors this semester: Darby the English Springer Spaniel, and Wyatt and Herbie the Therapy Cats. Learn more about them below!

A Springer Spaniel reclines on a sofa.

Darby!

Darby

Darby is a 6-year-old English Springer Spaniel. She lives with her people-mom and -dad in a 36-foot motor home. Traveling is a way of life for her, and she has become very adaptable to long trips on the road and different campgrounds. Darby is also a service dog, helping her hearing-impaired dad at home.  She enjoys flying at her humans’ feet on frequent flights between Illinois and Florida.She likes people of all ages as long as they will provide lots of loving and affection (so she’ll fit right in at the UGL!) This will be her first appearance in the library, but her second  at the U of I: the first was the Smoke Out event last year.
A relaxed orange cat lays on a mat.

Herbie!

Herbie

Herbie is a 15-year-old British short hair mix. Adopted from the Champaign County Humane Society, he is a laid back orange tabby that loves attention, string toys, catnip, and wrestling andplaying with his 3 cat brothers. He visits Clark-Lindsey retirement village every week, where he visits with residents and staff. He is registered as a therapy cat with Love on Leash, and his “mom” is involved in I-CAT, International Cat-Assisted Therapy.

A soft-looking cat, also on a mat.

Wyatt!

Wyatt

Wyatt is a five year old Ragdoll. He has long silver and white fur. He loves for his friends to give attention to him, and will purr and flex his paws if you pet him. Wyatt is very laid back and loves his people to visit, and he works every week at a nursing home in Champaign County. He is registered with Love on a Leash.

Here’s the schedule for spring semester 2014, showing which dogs (and cats) will be at which libraries on which days:

  • Grainger Engineering Library on Thursday, May 8th, from 2-4 PM: Sam and Darby
  • UGL on Monday, May 12th, from 2-4 PM: Tycho, Wyatt and Herbie
  • Funk ACES Library on Tuesday, May 13th, from 2-4 PM : Raven

We hope to see you there!

 

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A Day in the Life: Angeline

Have you ever wondered what a librarian’s job looks like? Or what exactly the staff members, faculty, and graduate assistants do at the Undergraduate Library during the day? Here’s your chance to find out! Meet Angeline, a graduate assistant at the UGL.

"A Day in the Life."

Q: So, Angeline, what do you do here?
A: Well, I’m a graduate assistant, so I get to do a lot of different things! Most often, I work at the research desk on the upper level of the UGL, and I also answer your questions through the Ask A Librarian chat. I teach library instruction classes for CMN 101/111, Rhet 105, and ESL 115 classes, so you may have had me as your instructor in one of those sessions. I’m here early to open the UGL on Saturday mornings, so if you really want to make my day, feel free to bring me tea! One of the projects I get to work on that I’m really excited about is digitizing video games.

Q: That sounds awesome. What’s your favorite part about your job?
A: Definitely the people I work with. Between having a lot of classes together and working together, all the graduate assistants here are pretty close. I really like how we all support each other, both in this job and as we have started looking for full-time employment after graduation.

Q: What’s your favorite part of the UGL?
A: Hmmm…the staff area! If you haven’t been back there–and, of course you haven’t, you’re probably not staff–it’s like Narnia. I mean, literally, I have to wear a jacket because it’s so cold.

Q: Besides working at the UGL, what do you do for fun?
A: I enjoy reading comics, mostly from the UGL because we have a really great collection. I’m a big Captain America fan, so I requested the comics we don’t have here from other libraries through I-Share so I could read them ALL.

Q: Nice! Now, let’s talk about something really important. Where is your favorite place to eat in town?
A: Black Dog! I love me some BBQ.

Q: Yum. What’s your favorite part of working with students?
A: Helping students find the information they need. There’s nothing better than having a student ask you for help, then being able to work with them to find what they’re looking for. It makes me feel like a superhero…but with less explosions. Although I did have to call an ambulance once.

Q: What do you wish students knew about the UGL?
A: That so many people who work at the UGL are here to answer your questions and help you with whatever you might need. So, come visit me on the research desk, I’d love to help!

Photo of Angeline

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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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A Day in the Life: Jake

Have you ever wondered what a librarian’s job looks like?  Or what exactly the faculty and staff members at the Undergraduate Library do during the day? We’d like to give you a behind-the-scenes look at the inner workings of the UGL in our new blog series “A Day in the Life.”

Due to high student use of the Media Commons and the recent media attention of the sound booth, we thought we would introduce you to Jake, our Media Commons Technology Support Specialist.

 

Jake is responsible for connecting students, staff, and faculty at UIUC to all the technology the Media Commons has to offer. When he isn’t working at his desk, you can find him all over the UGL, teaching students how to effectively use technology to create, edit, and produce quality digital media. Whether you want to use high end media editing software, need help shooting a video project in front of the green screen in the video production studio, or want to record a podcast in the sound booth, Jake is your guy.
Jake has a fancy-ass computer.

Need help? Ask Jake.

The best part about working in the Media Commons, Jake says, is that it offers everyone–undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty, and staff– the opportunity to create their own digital media on professional-quality technology.
Recently, Jake has been working hard to move, test, and set up the equipment in the sound booth to get it up and running for you. When asked about his favorite technology in the Media Commons, Jake replied that he is pretty pumped about the sound booth set- up and is excited to collaborate with students to take their audio projects to a higher level.
Jake’s passion for audio recording carries over into his work outside of the Undergraduate Library. Check out what Jake does on the weekends by visiting UrbanaBasement.com, a web series highlighting the live music scene in the Champaign-Urbana area.

 

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UGL 101: New Collab Room System

Have you studied in one of our incredibly useful group rooms yet this semester? If you have, you may have noticed that the system you used to snag your reservation is a little different than it was before. Read on for a tour of the new system and how to get collaboration rooms when you need them.

To get to the room reservation system, follow the same route you’ve taken before: start on the UGL homepage, then click on the button in the middle menu that says “Group Rooms.” From the group rooms page, look for the heading that says “How Do I Reserve a Room (Call D1bs?)” – underneath that heading is where you’ll find a link to the new reservation system.

When you first click in, you’ll be asked for information about what kind of room you need. How many people are in your group, how long do you need it, and when do you need it? Think generally – “morning,” “afternoon,” or “now” rather than “9 AM.” There’s time to get sepcific later.

Three drop-down menus let you specify your room needs.

For information about how many people can fit in a room, check the group rooms page or the subject guide linked below.

Next, it’ll show you which libraries have rooms available that fit all your needs. Click on the library you’d like to get a room in. If the library is grayed out and you can’t click on it, that means that library doesn’t have rooms that meet your time and space needs.

Information about the location of the rooms within the library is also provided on the second screen.

The “available times” number lets you know how many options are available at each library.

Next, pick a more specific time. The reservations that you see available should be for the same length of time that you specified in the first screen. Remember that rules about how many reservations you can make still stand – 2 hours at a time, twice a week, for a total of 4 hours a week. Click the time period that works best for you.

A list of reservation by time range is visible after selecting your library.

The number to the right shows you how many rooms are available for each specific time slot.

Finally, it’s time to actually reserve your room! On the final screen, put in your name and your @illinois.edu email address – and your phone number, if you’d like text updates – and click the button that says “Call D!bs!” See how clever we are? An email will be sent to your Illinois email address with the details about your room reservation. If you end up needing to cancel your reservation, the email will also contain a link that you can follow to cancel it.

So…tada! That’s the ins and outs of our new group room system. If you need further help with the system or if you have questions about room policies, we have a handy group room subject guide for you. You can also Ask a Librarian, as always. Happy collaborating!

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Springing into Action!

Even in the darkness of winter nights…we’re here.

Well…it’s actually still winter here in Illinois, and there’s still snow everywhere, but the UGL is still ready to spring forward into a new spring semester, helping you with all your reference, research, and information needs. Read on to find out when you can come see us during Spring 2014.

We’re super pumped to resume our usual 24-hours-during-the-week non-stop library party, but this first week will be a little different. Here’s how it’ll go:

  • Tuesday, January 21st – open at 8 AM and stay open until…
  • Friday, January 24th – close at 10 PM
  • Saturday, January 25th – open from 10 AM to 2 AM
  • Sunday, January 26th – open at 10 am and resume standard hours

Standard hours means we’re open 24 hours Sunday through Thursday, and then close at 2am on both Friday and Saturday nights (re-opening at 10 am on Saturday and Sunday mornings). That’s what we mean by ‘non-stop party.’

Our hours will be different over spring break – we’ll update you about that when the time comes, but in the mean time you can always check hours for any library on the appropriately named library hours page.

Stay tuned later this week for a round-up of helpful start-of-semester info. Happy spring! If you study hard, summer will come sooner.

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Winter Break: See you later!

As much as we’d love for you to stay with us at the UGL forever and ever for the rest of time, you need a break, and we need a break. The UGL will be closing at 7 PM on Friday, December 20th, and remain closed until next year – specifically, until Thursday, January 2nd. Limited hours will go into effect after that; read on to get the details for the UGL and other campus libraries.

The snowy UGL

Here’s a timeline of library hours over the break.

  • Saturday, December 21st – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Sunday, December 22nd – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Monday, December 23rd – the Main Circulation and Info Desks are open 8:30 AM – 5 PM; all other libraries are closed.
  • Tuesday, December 24th (Christmas Eve) – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Wednesday, December 25th (Christmas Day) – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Thursday, December 26th – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Friday, December 27th – the Main Circulation and Info Desks are open 8:30 AM – 5 PM; all other libraries are closed.
  • Saturday, December 28th – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Sunday, December 29th – all campus libraries are closed.
  • Monday, December 30th – the Main Circulation and Info Desks are open 8:30 AM – 5 PM; all other libraries are closed.
  • Tuesday, December 31st (New Year’s Eve) – the Main Circulation and Info Desks are open 8:30 AM – 5 PM; all other libraries are closed.
  • Wednesday, January 1st (New Year’s Day) – all campus libraries are closed.

Limited hours begin Thursday Januray 2nd – the Undergraduate Library will be open Monday through Friday, 8:30 AM – 5 PM, starting on that day. For a complete list of holiday hours for all libraries, check the library hours page. If you need us on a day we’re open, please do stop by! We’ll be happy to see you once we’re all rested up. Happy holidays!

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Get Some Doggone Hugs!

The UGL has gone to the dogs – therapy dogs, that is. Two therapy dog events are scheduled in the library during finals week to help you de-stress and finish this semester strong. Read on to find out the details and to meet the hard-working pups who make it all happen!

Malamute being petted by many hands

Sam will accept your adoration.

Sam the Alaskan Malamute has been to events at the UIUC libraries before, but he keeps coming back to see all his favorite people, and to please his loyal fans. Sam is a master of chilling out and napping, and will be pleased to teach you his stress-free ways, which he has been working on quite diligently for all of his 8 years.

Poodle licking lips in a silly way

Raven thinks the UGL is delicious!

Raven the Standard Poodle is also a library event veteran. Though her schedule is very busy with catching Frisbees and chasing tennis balls, she’s always happy to make time and come to the libraries for some petting. She’s 7 and a half, and prefers the company of adults like herself, since they are the best at the aforementioned petting.

Black Labrador retriever with soulful eyes

Neo looks expectant because he hears you give belly rubs, which are his favorite.

Neo the Labrador Retriever is 7 years old, and he hasn’t been to the UIUC libraries before, but he spends a lot of time at Carle Hospital and helping children in schools through the R.E.A.D. program. He’s also been given the Helping Hand award by the Champaign Fire Department for his help with crisis response. We’re sure he’ll be a big hit with all our students as well.

Boxer dog looking friendly on a couch

You don’t need a telescope to see how cute Tycho is.

Tycho the Boxer is a 9-year-old lover of cat food and new friends. He spends his days encouraging violin students by singing along, and playing with two Cornish Rex cats (from whom he steals the cat food). He also accompanies the violin students to performances at nursing homes, other libraries, and fundraisers.

These wonderful canine companions will be available on the following days:

  • Thursday, December 12th, from 2-4 PM in Grainger Engineering Library (Raven, Sam, and Neo)
  • Monday, December 16th, from 2-4 PM in the Undergraduate Library (Raven, Sam, Neo, and Tycho)

While you wait for the big dog days to arrive, you can follow the UGL’s  Therapy Dog Pinterest board to read up on therapy animals and how they help various people. The dogs (and the library!) look forward to seeing you there!

 

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