August Library Office Notes




ANNOUNCEMENTS: University Librarian Note
Check back next month for a new Note from Dean Wilkin.
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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Library Building Project Update
Tom Teper, Associate Dean for Collections and Technical Services

Phase One Architect/Engineer Selection

After many months of negotiations, the University received final approval to proceed with the Architect/Engineering firm for phase one of the Library Building Project. Officially assigned the pro9ject number and name “U20118 – Undergraduate Library Redevelopment,” the project begins with a team jointly led by Champaign-based RATIO Architects and Boston-based Shepley Bulfinch. These firms will lead a team that will embark on transforming the current Undergraduate Library building into a facility that will house the University Archives, the Illinois History and Lincoln Collections, and the Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

The winning firm’s selection culminated a rigorous competitive process. The University Library issued a Request for Proposals on October 22, 2020. We received and evaluated a total of twenty-five proposals. After narrowing the pool down to seven, and after reviewing presentations by the finalists, members of the University Library and the F&S project team strongly endorsed the selection of RATIO and Shepley Bulfinch.

This architectural and engineering team was chosen for their collective expertise and experience with similar projects, their understanding of the project requirements and schedules, their proposed approach to working with project stakeholders, their approach to designing a space that will incorporate accessibility and universal design principles, and their experiences working with similar library and archives materials. The evaluation team also devoted attention to the expertise of preservation consultants engaged by the firms and the experiences of the firms in designing and renovating facilities intended to house special collections materials.

Kick-Off Meeting and Initial Activities for July and Early August 2021

Representatives from the University Library, University Administration, and Facilities and Services met with members of our Architecture/Engineering Team for a kick-off meeting on July 15, 2021. This meeting is used to set ground rules for communication throughout the project, provides an opportunity for participants to review the project overview, scope and deliverables, and schedules for the coming months’ work. During that meeting Library personnel received a schedule of initial meetings for July and August 2021. These include the following initial meetings:

  • July 20-21, 2021 – During this 1.5-day session, project team members received facilities tours and participated in a set of meetings involving the majority of the Special Collections Division’s members. These meetings primarily focused on reviewing background information that the Special Collections Division compiled and the Library provided as part of the selection process, reviewing the vision, program (proposed square footage needs, and temperature and humidity criteria for the project. 
  • July 28, 2021 – This session will center on providing additional tours, reviewing shelving and storage needs, reviewing site programming and conditions (loading, utilities, access needs), and reviewing benchmarking.
  • August 4, 2021 – This final session will consist of a presentation to team members on the verified program (e.g., now that they confirmed the data provided over the last couple meetings, we will make sure that both parties are on the same page), and get a sign-off from UIUC on Gross Square Feet (GSF) and Assignable Square Feet (ASF) as well as shelving quantities.

Proposed Project Schedule

The kick-off meeting included a review of the proposed project schedule from the point that “conceptualization” began on July 21, 2021 through what is called “substantial completion” of construction work. Those dates in the future become increasingly speculative. At present, the schedule is as follows:

A. Conceptualization

07/21/2021 work session
08/12/2021 submission date
08/26/2021 est. Concept review meeting

B. Schematic Design

11/09/2021 submission date
11/23/2021 est. SD review meeting

C. Design Development

01/22/2022 submission date
02/04/2022 est. DD review meeting-BOTPreparation

D. Construction Documents 50%

03/31/2022 submission date
4/14/2022 est. 50% CD review meeting

E. Construction Documents 95%

07/04/2022 submission date
07/18/ 2022 est. 95% CD review meeting
08/18/2022 100% CD completion

F. Bidding/Award

08/18/2022 Advertise for Bids
08/25/2022 Pre-bid /Pre-pricing meeting
09/30/2022 Bid Opening – To be confirmed
01/04/2023 Notice Proceed

G. Board of Trustees approval (required on if individual contract is over $2,500,000.)

H. Construction – Start/End * 01/05/2023 – 05/29/2024

Communications – Website

On June 29, 2021, the Library released a new project website at:

Once the website became public, a news item was released, and the information was also communicated out to the following locations:

  • Added to Library’s News page (see post).
  • Submitted to Library trade journals, including C&RL News, American Libraries, Library Journal/, Library Journal Academic Newswire, International Leads (ALA), Advanced Technology Libraries, the Illinois Library Association Reporter, Smart Libraries Newsletter, D-Lib Magazine, Library Media Connection, and School Library Journal. Also the following: the Illinois State Library, Illinois Heartland Library System, and Reaching Across Illinois Library System. And, last but not least, the Association of Research Libraries and the Chronicle of Higher Education.
  • Submitted to local media, including:  the News Gazette, Daily Illini, WILL-AM-FM-TV and The 21st, WDWS-AM, WCIA-TV, WICD-TV, WAND-TV, and Smile Politely.
  • Submitted to July 4 editions of Eweek and GradLINKS. (iNews resumes sending to undergrads on August 22.)
  • Posted to social media, including the Library’s Facebook (see post), Twitter (see post), Instagram (see post), and reddit (see post). Shared with the social media managers of other Library accounts and with the campus social media team to amplify.
  • Shared with Jodi Heckel at the campus News Bureau and with Robin Kaler and Chris Harris at Public Affairs.

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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Residence Hall Libraries’ Summer Reading Bingo
Enjoying your summer reading and other entertainment?  Why not get rewarded for it? Complete a BINGO on the Summer Reading Challenge card and bring it into the Residence Hall Libraries by Friday, Sept. 6th for your choice of a treat and to be entered in a raffle to choose an Advanced Readers Copy of a book from our stash.  Find out more about the Residence Hall Libraries, including our summer hours, here:

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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Task Force Updates
There were two meetings of the Task Force in the past month (July 8 and 21).

New DEIA Director Victor Jones, Jr. attended his first Task Force meeting on July 21. He is currently reviewing the Assessment Team’s survey report and the Vision Statement and DEIA definition drafts. The Task Force spent time reviewing Year One goals at this meeting.

All of the Task Force teams are drafting informal, mid-Year One reports.

DEIA Task Force Chairs Jessica Ballard and Joe Lenkart offered virtual Office Hours on July 23 from 11-12 to hear from colleagues in the Library. More are planned.
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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Did You Know? A Monthly Factoid from Library Assessment

  • 86% of staff are always or often attending Hangouts.
  • Almost half (47%) never watch the recordings.
  • Almost all (99%) strongly agree or agree that Hangouts provide important information.
  • 77% strongly agree or agree that Hangouts provide a virtual environment for employees to connect.
  • 87% strongly agree or agree that recaps shared via LIB-NEWS have been helpful.

There were 33 comments to improve Hangouts (from 58.9% of survey takers). Here are a few:

  • Hangouts seem targeted to faculty; make relevant to civil service and grad students.
  • Is there a way to submit topics in advance?
  • Send an agenda beforehand; share documents to be discussed ahead of time.
  • Assign someone to watch the chat as Qs sometimes get lost.
  • More notice for Hangouts.
  • More on what other committees are doing or a team or group spotlight.
  • Provide community guidelines or chat etiquette.
  • Consider adding structured social time or more informal discussion.

Stay tuned for more on improving future monthly Hangouts.
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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Digital Humanities Listserv
Spencer D. C. Keralis, Ph.D., Digital Humanities Librarian

Do you work with faculty and students who work at the intersection of the humanities and arts with technology? Are you interested in digital scholarship and pedagogy at Illinois? If so, then please join the university’s DH community email list. All subscribers are welcome to submit news, announcements, and queries to the list.
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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Collection Development Committee Notes
The most recent meetings minutes of the CDC are posted at:
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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Content Access Policy & Technology Meeting Minutes
The meeting minutes of CAPT (including workgroup reports) are posted at:
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ANNOUNCEMENTS: Recognizing Excellence

Please share your award, recognition, or grant! To initiate a request for publicity, employees (or their supervisors) should submit this Awards/Recognitions/Grants Publicity Request Form.
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HR NEWS: Filled Positions

  • Javonda Pelman – Assistant/Associate Director of Advancement – Advancement – 8/9/2021
  • Siobhan McKissic – Visiting Design and Materials Research Librarian – Ricker Library – 9/1/2021
  • Yungjin Shin – Visiting Project Conservator – Preservation Services – 9/1/2021
  • Sandi Caldrone – Research Data Librarian – Research Data Service – 10/16/2021
  • Evelyn Cordell – Dual Career E-Learning Librarian – Research Information Services – 10/16/2021

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HR NEWS: Departures 

  • Jim Dohle – Director of Library IT Production Services – Library IT – 7/16/2021
  • Donna Hoffman – Administrative Assistant – BHRSC – 7/31/2021
  • Andrea Black – Library Specialist – SSHEL – 8/6/2021
  • David Morris – Assistant Professor – Literatures and Languages Library – 8/15/2021

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HR NEWS: Searches Completed 

  • Assistant/Associate Director of Advancement, AP – Heather Murphy – chair 50/50 split with OVCIA 

Virtual interviews held June 8, June 14, and June 15. Offer extended. Javonda Pelman start date will be August 9, 2021.

  • Visiting Design and Materials Research Librarian – Ricker Library, FAC – Kirstin Dougan Johnson, Chair 

Kick-off meeting scheduled for April 14, 2020. Vacancy Suspended until further notice. Kick-off meeting held Nov 2, 2020. Awaiting for EC to approve JD. EC approved JD. 

Live on the job board. Search closed Jan 29, 2021. Phone screenings held Feb 22, 23, and 24. Virtual interviews held March 29, April 2, April 5, and April 9. Offer extended. Siobhan McKissic start date will be September 1, 2021.

  • Visiting Project Conservator – Preservation Services, AP – Tom Teper, Chair

Kick-off meeting held Nov 5, 2020. JD approved by EC. Live on the job board. Search closed Jan 22, 2021. Virtual interview held March 23, 2021. Offer Extended. Yungjin Shin start date will be September 1, 2021.

  • Research Data Librarian – Research Data Service, FAC – Carissa Phillips, Chair 

Kick-off meeting held February 16, 2021. Live on the job board. Closed April 9, 2021. Phone screenings scheduled April 21, April 22, April 26, April 27, and April 29. Virtual interviews held May 17, May 18, May 27, and June 1. Sandi Caldrone start date will be October 16, 2021. All documents are with BOT for next approval meeting in September.

  • Dual Career-E-Learning Librarian – Research Information Services, FAC – David Ward, Chair

Kick-off meeting held May 24, 2021. Virtual interview held June 4, 2021. Offer Extended. Evelyn Cordell start date will be October 16, 2021. All documents are with BOT for next approval meeting in September.
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HR NEWS: Searches in Progress or Pre-announcement

  • Associate Director for Fiscal Operations – Business & Human Resources Service Center, AP – Skye Arseneau, Chair

Kick-off meeting held June 7, 2021. EC approved JD. Awaiting IHR approval. IHR approved JD 6/29/2021. Job live on job board. Closed July 16, 2021. 

  • Metadata Librarian– Acquisitions and Cataloging, FAC – Dan Tracy, Chair

Kick-off scheduled for June 22, 2021. EC approved JD. Job live on the job board. Closing date August 20, 2021. 

  • Visiting Research Specialist, Slavic Reference Service (grant funded) – International and Area Studies Library, AP – Kit Condill, Chair

Kick-off scheduled for August 9, 2021.
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HR NEWS: Searches Approved but on Hold

  • ACS Cataloging Coordinator – Acquisitions and Cataloging Services, AP – Mara Thacker, Chair

Kick-off meeting scheduled for May 13, 2020.  EC approved position. IHR approved JD Oct 7, 2020. Live on job board. Closed Nov 6, 2020. Phone screenings held Jan 4, Jan 5, Jan 6, and Jan 7, 2021. Virtual interviews held Feb 17, 23, and 26. CLOSED WITHOUT HIRE.
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EVENTS AND TRAINING: Staff Events Calendar
To see the most up-to-date staff events calendar, please visit
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EVENTS AND TRAINING: Fostering Community and Students’ Creativity with Online Library Programming
August 3 at 1 PM

This is a CARLI-sponsored Professional Development Alliance (PDA) event. 

While college libraries have had to limit public spaces and hours in the last year, staff members at NC State Libraries adapted quickly to offer engaging programming for students online. This has included streaming over Twitch, virtual tours of the newly renovated Hill Library, virtual Makerspace workshops, the State of Sound sessions, and various exhibits to showcase student work. Learn about how they reimagined programming during the pandemic and what tools they’re using to host events. 
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EVENTS AND TRAINING: OEC Article Reading Group
August 9 at 11 AM

Please join OEC member Shelby Strommer to discuss the following readings about assessing outreach programming. Discussion will be inspired by the featured articles, but everyone is invited whether or not they have had a chance to complete the readings. All are welcome!

Farrell, S. L., & Mastel, K. (2016). Considering Outreach Assessment: Strategies, Sample Scenarios, and a Call to Action. In the Library with the Lead Pipe.

Santiago, A., Vinson, E., Warren, M., & Lierman, A. (2019). Evaluating academic library outreach to determine return on investment for student success. Journal of Library Administration, 59(4), 359-372. doi:10.1080/01930826.2019.1593709

Zoom information shared via LibNews email from Shelby Strommer on July 15.
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EVENTS AND TRAINING: NISO Webinar – Audits and Assessment
August 11 at 10 AM

Organizations, small- and medium-sized enterprises, academic and governmental institutions all have mechanisms and plans for auditing and assessing their activities. But just thinking about what’s involved in such processes can be stressful for those involved. Where should your organization start? What data might be useful? What are the meaningful metrics needed to establish best practices and how should your organization be thinking about them as applied to productivity or workflows? Accountability is fraught with sensitive issues like these. This event will bring together a group of experts from across the information community to share their ideas and experiences regarding what works and what doesn’t.  

Please email for login credentials or recordings
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EVENTS AND TRAINING: August SoTL Discussion 
August 12 at 3 PM

Continuation of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning series. 
Zoom information will be shared via LibNews closer to the event date.
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EVENTS AND TRAINING: New Graduate Assistant General Orientation
August 16-19

Sessions are available for registration through the Library staff calendar:

Day one includes sessions that will apply to all GA’s working in the Library. The sessions on the other days may or may not be relevant. GA supervisors – please work with your GAs to guide them to the sessions that are appropriate for the work they will be doing (e.g., if they will not be answering questions via LibChat, let them know they should not register for the chat reference session). Supervisors can sign the GAs up individually, or ask GAs to sign up themselves. As with prior years, all of these sessions are also open to anyone whose work relates to these areas and who would like to develop/refresh their skills. 
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If you would like to submit content for the September issue of Library Office Notes, please submit it to Heather Murphy or Tom Teper by August 20, 2021.