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Jun 07 2022 - 07:00 PM
Affirming the Collective: Public Services+, Spring Report 2022

Landscape_Ukrainian.jpegIn Spring 2022 the Gottesman Libraries experienced renewed opportunity and growth; we built offerings and resources with increased collaboration and integration, while maintaining services still impacted by the pandemic. We kept the Library open, robust, and vibrant for our patrons, onsite and off, despite staffing shortages across units. Thanks to our dedicated team, and with appreciation for our campus colleagues who supported us in new endeavors, this report highlights key areas of public service, as it affirms our collective spirit.

Education Program

EDProgramLogo.jpgThe Semester opened with instructional offerings. We conducted select physical tours and a New Student Orientation in coordination with the Office of Graduate Student Life and Development. Throughout the semester we provided timely workshops on germane topics to assist users with numerous library resources and services: Research Reboot, Advanced Searching (2/8, 4/12), Cited Reference Searching, Introduction to Course Resource Lists (2/23, 3/23, 4/20), News and Law Databases, Zotero (3/29, 4/28), Biodesign Workshop, Systematic Reviews, Copyright, Scoping Reviews, and Resources for Alumni. And we highlighted research resources in broad areas of education to promote the collections: K-12 Databases (January); Celebrating Libraries (February); Women in Education; (March); National Poetry Month (April); National Bike Month (May).

Conversation and discourse remained strong, allowing us to host talks by leaders in education, psychology, and the applied health sciences. Talks, whether artist, book, or special guest, shared a common theme in a time of pressing global concern for health, peace, and justice: how can we ultimately create a better society through exploration and application of the latest thinking about education, in ways that engage members of the community with one another and with a broad range of educational experts? Learning and Growing at the Intersection of Art and Science, a biodesign panel, was moderated by Isabel Correa, 2021 Myers Art awardee for Human-Nature Entanglements: Explorations in Creativity Beyond Human. Artivists opened the exhibition, Art for a Purpose on May 10th, the culminating event of the second annual Artivism program, a collaboration with Adelphi University and Sing for Hope, with fourteen talks this Spring relating to art and activism: Art Unites, with Yiannis Kaminis; America Divided, with Charles Herman; The Power of Artmaking Towards Transformation, with Melissa Fernandez; Reimagining Fashion and Art Education, with Hyunsoo Alice Kim; The Earth Singing Project, with Katarzna Sadej; The Ground Beneath Our Hearts, with Trebbe Johnson; Gender and Design, with Melanie Levick-Parkin; Freeing up the Windup Dolls, with Desiree Navab; Art for Life, with Madhura Dutta; Hidden Mothers Project, with Tereza Buskova; Multilingual Artivism, with Carlos Aguasaca; Instilling Hope, with Christina Lisi, et al.; The Veggera Project, with Irini Ampoumogli; Towards a More Inclusive Culture, with Stela Anastasaki and Christina Vlachou.

Additional guest talks addressed Raciolinguistic Ideologies and Transatlantic Language Policing, with Ian Cushing, co-sponsored by the Program in English Education; Secondary Schooling Before, During, and After the Pandemic, with Felicitas Acosta, co-sponsored by the Department of Curriculum and Teaching. Book talks celebrated the publications of alumni, faculty, and our institution's publisher: "Auto-Ethnography & the Diasporic Experience", stemming from Correctional: A Memoir, with Ravi Shankar, Neni Panourgiám, and Carlos Ivan Calaff, sponsored by the Society of Fellows; Heyman Center for the Humanities; and Justice-in-Education Initiative at Columbia University, among others; Women and the Challenge of STEM Professions, with Marie Miville and co-authors, co-sponsored by the Department of Counseling and Clinical Psychology; and How the Arts Can Save Education, with Erica, Halverson, co-sponsored by Transformative Learning Technologies Lab and Program in Communications, Media and Learning Technologies Design, with support from Teachers College Press.

Sliding Doors, a new program co-sponsored by TC's Digital Futures Institute and Graduate Student Life and Development, comprised lively, pop-up talks given by and for members and affiliated members -- often student leaders of Teachers College: Whats App Is the New Black, with Lauryn Duncan; Wordle... and Other Games That Helped Us Through the Pandemic, with Elliott Hu-Au; Visual Explanations and a New Theory of Learning, with Josh Friedman; and The Downfall of Kimye: What the Uncoupling of Kim Kardashian West & Kanye West Tells Us About Gender, Class & Society, with Tara Kirton.


We continuously presented book, news, and art displays. Curated and designed each month Staff Picks comprised Hidden Treasures, curated by Natali Constanza; Arabian Night, by Rania Abdelqadar; Challenged Books, by Rachel Altvater; and Self Care for Finals and Beyond, by Patti O'Meara. Everett Cafe book displays on current affairs and learning, focused on Carbon and Climate; also featured on the website of the TC Center for Sustainable Futures; and Artivism: Inventing Vision, Taking Action, complementing Artivism. Daily News from Around the World featured in Everett Cafe, inspired by the curation of Newseum's front pages. Historical news displays, drawn from Proquest Historical Newspapers, were posted to the Library Blog, highlighting interesting topics and relevant library holdings. Among the historical news curations for Today In History were: Four Freedoms; Thomas Paine Publishes Common Sense; Winter Olympics; WHO Declares COVID a Pandemic; Ruth Winifred Howard Is Born; Google Launches Gmail; Notre Dame Catches Fire; High Level Signature for Climate Change; Margaret H'Doubler Is Born; Children's Crusade Against Segregation; Florence Nightingale Is Born.

An open call for artwork drew over one hundred submissions from around the world, allowing us to present Art for a Purpose in collaboration with participating institutions: Adelphi University, Performing Arts Center,, and Center for the Women of New York, Fort Totten. Our intent was to expand thinking "on how we care for ourselves as individuals, as a collective, and nature's influence in the process of seeking liberation." In collaboration with the Artivism Team, this exhibit was curated by Trisha Barton, Lead Designer, with assistance from Scarlett Cheng, Library Associate, Art and Design. It followed Human-Nature Entanglements: Exploring Creativity Beyond Human, by Isabel Correa, which opened in December and ran until March.

Additional special art projects included the Call for Proposals and granting of Myers 2022 awards to TC students Monben Mayon ("Peacing Shirley") and Lindsey Jones ("I Was Made in Shapes") with forthcoming installations (October, December, 2022); signage for framed art collections in renovated storage areas; framing of the Passow Collection of Israeli Children's Peace Art, Part 1 (30 works); framing of diptychs and triptychs (from the Ziegfeld Collection of International Children's Art); and completion of the Tudor Room, 271 Grace Dodge, where we hung eight historic portraits and a commemorative plaque, in appreciation of the philanthropic Myers Foundations; installed new furniture and furnishings; produced a high-end brochure; and mediated bookings with recommended guidelines.

Finally, the Everett Cafe Music Program offered live performances by TC student and affiliated musicians: Wadsworth Strings, our longest-running professional ensemble (2/16, 3/23, 4/20); TC students Vivian Phong Ngo, Jose Lomeli, Shane Bordeau and Paul Murphy, and the Dawud Rahman Trio who performed for the opening of Art for a Purpose. These performances brought an eclectic and happy blend of classical, jazz, swing, and Indie pop, livening the library in celebration of diverse musical talent.


Reference Services - Instruction


We welcomed the return of Senior Librarian, Allen Foresta, in mid-February, as well as new Research and Instruction Librarian, Becca Gates, in mid-March. Course-specific instruction, largely on hold, resumed in small capacity, while consultations (one-on-one research appointments with students) remained steady, particularly from January through April.

The annual archival session with the Program in Art and Art Education took an interesting direction, focusing this year on marginalized histories of individuals or peoples. Research called for a deep dive into the meaning and significance of relevant archival collections held at Teachers College, with special interest shown by participants in the Ukrainian Children's Art Collection and related resources.

  • A&HB 4140, Latina Narratives, Carmen Martinez-Roldan, Monday, March 21, 5:15-5:35pm, 10 attendees (Allen Foresta)

  • ORLN 5013, Informatics in Nursing, Dawn Aubel, Friday, April 22, 1-2:4pm, 4 attendees (Allen Foresta)

Among the consultation topics were:

  • research on factors associated with participation in school meals during emergencies
  • Black Education using S.C.A.L.E. as a means of theorizing
  • nutrition education design framework based on Contento & Koch's DESIGN Procedure and other established processes in the field
  • benefits of including a drama unit in the H.S. English Language Arts curriculum
  • whether kids'/teens' parental attachment style influences
  • how MFA (visual arts) program help prepare their students for teaching endeavors after graduation
  • solo artists
  • the learning impacts of COVID-19 learning disruptions for unhoused students in North Carolina from a human rights frame
  • experimental /pilot studies in art and art education
  • nonhuman animals depictions and taxidermy in art and art education
  • infusing climate change while teaching subjects like math, english, social science
  • STEAM and successful curricula
  • competence of young adults/Learning motivation
  • STEAM and effectiveness - creativity
  • how early career female, minority, and immigrant artist(s) in the United States embody their creative authenticity
  • how to use art to encourage shy people's participation in class/learning; how to let sensitive person or people who has special needs use art to express themselves?
  • re-designing the survey of art history courses required for art history majors at the college level
  • what might art teachers learn from the practice of artists
  • an archive related to LGBTQ+
  • Dorothy Dunn's Studio style and Native American art education
  • history of teaching art in prisons and concentration camps
  • evaluating the effects non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) on the upper limb in children with cerebral palsy (CP) and to examine the protocols for stimulation administration
  • relationship between sleep quality and sleep duration as associated with weight loss among Adults
  • Unit-Based Education and its effect on nurses' anxiety, self-confidence, clinical performance, and patient satisfaction.
  • content analysis of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Policies/Practices at US and Japanese universities
  • how school-based setting interventions have influenced eating habits and facilitate the increase in fruits and vegetables consumption among American students between ages 5 and 18
  • developing an auditing process for nurses and to measure perception and satisfaction among nurses audited
  • impact and benefit of Executive Coaching on Black employees moving into leadership roles
  • to what extent how experiences help students when they are writing stories in their playwriting class? How do teachers guide students in digging into their experiences and applying experiences to write good stories?
  • research on communication of earnings benefits of college attendance to students and their families

Becca Gates led the Twitter account to help promote library awareness and use, and teamed with Allen Foresta to produce a first set of Libguides, descriptive annotated bibliographies for the academic programs of the College. The new Springshare software launched in March, with an ambitious production goal of one research guide per academic program -- approximately 60 by the Fall. A recommended template, research into best practices (including accessibility), and consultation with faculty members are part of the process and key to successful delivery of a model collection of reference sources which will be available to the wider community of researchers.

In addition we planned the development of the children's literature and K-12 curriculum collections with Library Associate, Rachel Altvater, and Head of Technical Services, Kalli Mathios. We reviewed the final selection by Becca Gates of new e-books in Computing in Education -- fulfilling obligations to New York State for the Coordinated Collection Development Grant (2020-2022).


Reader Services - Circulation

From January 1st until May 19th, Library Associates checked out 3,624 books (In-House and Not In-House), including those borrowed on interlibrary loan and processed by Technical Services. We checked in 4,125 items, including books and other materials having extended loan dates due to the pandemic. We anticipate substantial returns of library books as we move into the Summer term.

We regularly reviewed patron accounts with regard to fines and replacement fees, informed by weekly reports from Columbia University Libraries and our Alma Spring Term reports. We negotiated a substantial number of library accounts due to the conclusion of extended due dates on February 18, 2022 and the grace periods allowed in our system. On May 4th, 2022 a new New York State law was signed, granting amnesty to indebted students for records and transcripts -- thus involving coordination with the TC Office of the Registrar to ensure gracious review of library accounts and issuance of documents.

We partnered with New York Public Library to facilitate the issuing of library cards for Teachers College students wishing to expand privileges for access to materials, particularly for leisure, and to reader programs, for engagement beyond books. We assisted with processing 10 applications -- coordinating with the George Bruce Library, located at 518 West 125th Street, to deliver scanned paperwork and arrange the pick up of library cards from the Gottesman Libraries' Services Desk.


Library Associates tackled shelf reading of the circulating collections in the Tower and reading rooms; scanning materials for Course Reserves; curating daily news in Everett Cafe, as well as monthly Staff Picks; receipt and packaging of loaned materials; troubleshooting technology, often printers and scanners; monitoring library use in public areas; sampling of patron counts (by floor, by hour, over 2 week periods); and work in other areas, as needed. We kept current with scheduling / staffing for 89 opening library hours per week, plus extended hours until 1:00am during finals. Joining the Associates team were TC students Vikas Tadad and Patti O'Meara.

Special and Digital Collections

In March, Conrad Lochner became Special and Digital Collections Librarian, a new position. We collaborated on creating a reading room brochure to encourage best practices; servicing of archival queries, online and onsite (including requests by TC Trustees); and planning the migration of materials to a new digital repository through careful analysis and organization of scanned collections. Work began on the subbasement inventory, aimed at reviewing, upgrading, and displaying catalog records of historical resources for accuracy and consistency.

The electronic transfer of the David Long archive in K-12 school finance and finance education reform was completed in March, and we reviewed the status of other archival collections, with plans for summer projects: the Institute for the Philosophy and Politics of Education and Joan Hollobon letters. We corresponded with donors, including faculty, alumni, and relatives of alumni with regard to gifts that fit within our collecting scope.

Spring_Night_Ziegfeld.jpegAdministrative - Other

Additional accomplishments are:

  • recruitment for a new Circulation and User Experience Librarian, Web Services Librarian, and additional Library Associates, with a focus on unit work

  • gathering and submission of annual services' statistics to the Association of Academic Libraries (ARL) and IPEDS, in coordination with Columbia University Libraries and the TC Office of Institutional Research

  • sunsetting Vialogues, with migration of select content to Yuja, in coordination with TC IT and with communications to users

  • successful transition to Cashnet from Paypal, in coordination with TC IT and the Bursar's Office (for storefront)

  • full launch of Course Resource Lists, powered by Exlibris Leganto, in coordination with TCIT and Digital Futures Institute, with communications to users

  • library website migration to College's T4 platform (in process, nearing completion)

  • preparation of the library calendar for 2022-2023

  • implementation of LibCal, our new room reservations system powered by Springshare, in coordination with TC IT and with communications to the community

  • streamlining of digital signage (event posters and news' curations) using slide decks on e-boards, in coordination with TC Media Services

  • upgrading of technology (workstations, monitors, scanners), in coordination with TC Media Services

  • continuing service on Columbia library committees: Access Services, Planning, and Strategy (weekly); Collections Forum (monthly); Learning and Reference Support Strategies (bi-monthly); and Directors (occasional)



"Spring work is going on with joyful enthusiasm."

-- John Muir, Scottish American Naturalist, Father of National Parks (1838-1914)

Posted in: ReportsLearning at the Library|By: Jennifer Govan|246 Reads