Alderman, Swem, Cabell, McConnell, Wilder, Johnson, Newman, Tompkins-McCaw, Boatwright, Lyman Beecher Brooks and Claude Moore are among Virginia academic libraries.
Now, they share a new commonality.
Any member of the VCU community--student, faculty or staff--can walk into any of these participating libraries and others, prove affiliation with VCU and enjoy immediate borrowing privileges. This convenience might prove particularly helpful for traveling researchers or students visiting their hometowns on school breaks.
The pilot program for the 2013-14 academic year is through the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA) consortium.
VCU borrowers at other participating libraries will be asked to login to
An update on our plans from University Librarian John E. Ulmschneider, Associate University Librarian for Administration and Policy Development Jeanne M. Hammer and the VCU Libraries Office of Communications and Public Relations.
Last week, the VCU Libraries community tangibly heard and felt our near future: The rat-a-tat-tat of jackhammers at dawn. A crew was exploring how the concrete aggregate panels are attached to Cabell Library in order to finalize construction specs for the new library on the Monroe Park Campus.
Experiencing the exploratory demolition, the reality of a new library came into clearer focus. We are on schedule to break concrete - literally - in March, 2014 with construction ramping up during the summer. The new building will be complete for fall semester 2015.
And, in answer to the most common question we hear: Cabell Library will remain open, offering full, around-the-clock services to VCU students and faculty during the construction. And, we'll also make earplugs available.
Updates and details
- Virgina's Department of Planning and Budget and Bureau of Capital Outlay Management have approved a budget of $50,800,000. Following that approval, the Virginia College Building Authority last week successfully concluded a bond issue that provides the actual funds. That means the money for the building is now available, and will be transferred to VCU very shortly.
- The Boston/Richmond team of Shepley Bulfinch/Moseley/KSA/AEI are our designers, architects and engineers. W.M. Jordan will provide construction management.
- 90 percent of the new space is for users, not staff or materials.
- See all the details and drawings of the design.
Design decisions and highlights
Concepts for configuring the new and old buildings were carefully considered. Our choice maximizes every nook in the old building and offers exciting new spaces in the new.
The new building entranceway faces Shafer Court and opens onto The Compass--the psychic center of Monroe Park campus. The trees and green space on the Cathedral side of the library will be preserved. More details:
- A dedicated space for faculty and graduate students will enjoy an inspirational view, looking east from the fourth floor.
- Media creation space on the lowest level will provide access to state of the art and experimental audio and video content, visual and graphic design and production tools, 3D printers, and other advanced media resources to support academic projects, including high-end computers for video manipulation and data visualization, along with advanced immersive technology spaces.
- An expanded Starbucks will remain integrated with the library.
- A large, flexible, media-rich presentation and event space will provide a stage for many academic programs and VCU events.
- Artwork, exhibits and event space will showcase VCU's arts programs.
- Instructional spaces will incorporate robust technology and flexible furnishings.
- Expanded space for Cabell's Special Collections and Archives will allow easier access and more use of these rare materials.
- Glass facades will reveal interior activity, creating a welcoming beacon that draws the VCU community into the library.
- Street levels will provide pedestrian-scaled facades that welcome the campus into the building and engage with adjacent outdoor space.
- Pedestrian flow into and around the new building will be flexible, open, and free-flowing. The design minimizes obstacles to pedestrian traffic from the new classroom building north to Shafer Court, and from The Compass west, north, and south. The east pedestrian traffic approach should not be affected.
- The building design is targeting LEED Silver certification at a minimum.
Research data has unrealized potential. It is often relegated to lab notebooks or isolated computers. It is often inaccessible beyond personnel working on a research project, whether basic scientist or social scientist. As our world has become more networked, more funders require that scientists present a plan for data management as a condition of funding and peer reviewed journals often require authors to make the data behind a publication accessible on request. These are among the factors that influenced the VCU Libraries to create a new professional position of Director for Research Data Management.
Margaret E. Henderson is taking on that new role. As an adjunct faculty member for several years at Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences, Henderson has served as a research and education librarian. Since 2006, she has worked part-time for VCU School of Medicine's Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology on digital asset management for scientific data and images, among other activities.
With that work and her previous service as the director of the Cold Springs Harbor Laboratory Library and Archives, Henderson brings to the new position deep knowledge about the research process, managing data, informatics and the VCU research community.
"Research data management is a dynamic area of growth for VCU Libraries and we are establishing a framework for the integration of knowledge management into the research data lifecycle," said Associate University Librarian and Tompkins-McCaw Director Teresa L. Knott.
Librarians have long organized knowledge-based information for search, retrieval and sharing. "Now, by being involved at the beginning of the research process, librarians can assist in the research enterprise and share their expertise earlier in the research process." Knott said. "Ms. Henderson will help researchers develop strong data management plans for project proposals; recommend a process to assign metadata or an appropriate ontology to enhance data sharing; identify options for data storage and curation; and advise on author's rights."
Henderson holds a graduate certificate in biomedical informatics from Oregon Health and Sciences University, the master's in library and information science and the bachelor's of science from the University of Western Ontario.
A new self-serve kiosk in the lobby of James Branch Cabell Library should speed up laptop loans and returns.
Last year, VCU Libraries loaned laptops about 40,000 times, making these top-used items, said M. Teresa Doherty, head of Information Services. She played a lead role in bringing the new kiosk to Cabell, one of the few libraries in the nation to place one in a library building.
With the kiosk, students can avoid the service desk and get straight to work with the swipe of their VCUCard. The kiosk will shorten waits for other patrons who need to talk with information associates at the main desk.
The kiosk charges the machines while they are waiting to be checked out, so they can get back into circulation faster. It also makes it easy to see if machines are available.
"So far, students seem to have adapted very well to them," Doherty said, "Our students usually notice quickly when we introduce something to make their work easier and faster." During its first 24 hours of operation, more than 200 laptops were checked out through the kiosk.
Added Jimmy Ghaphery, head of Digital Technologies for VCU Libraries: "This is a pilot and we are all eager to see how well it works. It promises to be more convenient for students and has the potential, if successful, to be reproduced in other locations on campus."
The new checkout kiosk is part of an ongoing partnership between VCU Libraries and VCU Technology Services to provide free equipment for student use.
Another new service this semester is an express line for gadget checkins and checkouts.
The 2013 VCU Friends of the Library book sale will be held Oct. 21-25 at James Branch Cabell Library.
2013 Book Sale Hours
- Monday, Oct. 21: Noon-8 p.m.
- Tuesday, Oct. 22: 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
- Wednesday, Oct. 23: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
- Thursday, Oct. 24: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. **Special ½ price sale
- Friday, Oct. 25: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.**Special ½ price sale
- Preview sale for VCU Friends of the Library donors: Monday, Oct. 21: 9 a.m.-Noon
During the spring semester, a group of students from the Department of Interior Design and the Department of Crafts and Material Studies met in Cabell Library Special Collections and Archives to participate in a collaborative project inspired by Special Collections and Archives itself. The students worked in teams composed of two Interior Design graduate students and one Craft and Material Studies major, and each team selected a particular focus of Special Collections and Archives to serve as the catalyst for a design for a functional LED light fixture. With Cabell Library preparing for the construction of a major new building adjacent and attached to the existing structure, the teams also engaged with the vision for the new building, trying to imagine their completed light fixtures installed inside it and incorporated into the architecture.
The completed light fixtures will be on display on the first floor of Cabell Library from April 26 to May 10 for all patrons and visitors to see. An opening reception will take place on Friday, April 26, from 5 to 7 p.m. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet the designers and to discuss the project. Both the exhibit and the opening reception will be free and open to the public.
Member, Cabell Library Undergraduate Advisory Committee
- Edward L. Ayers, president, University of Richmond, pioneer in the digital humanities
- Amanda French, THATCamp (The Humanities and Technology Camp) coordinator, Center for History and New Media, George Mason University
- Emily Smith, executive director, 1708 Gallery, Richmond, curator and creator of InLight Richmond
- Moderator: Roy D. McKelvey, associate professor, Department of Graphic Design, VCU, co-founder of Loop: AIGA Journal of Interactive Design Education
- Ben Fino-Radin, digital conservator for Rhizome at the New Museum and manager of the Museum of Modern Art Digital Repository
- Francesca Fiorani, associate professor, History of Art and Architecture, UVA, director of Leonardo da Vinci and His Treatise on Painting
- Michael Poston, database applications associate, Folger Shakespeare Library
- Moderator: Joshua Eckhardt, associate professor, Department of English, VCU, and founding, general co-editor of British Virginia
Now, you can get help in real time no matter where you are--at home or at lunch, in the campus connector bus or on the quiet floor at Cabell with your backpack, laptop and notes scattered around you.
To access chat: Go to the "Ask Us" web page and click on the chat bubble. A chat "box" will open for you to type in your question. A research librarian will help you.
- Monday-Thursday 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.
- Friday 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
- Sunday 6 - 10 p.m.
VCU Libraries has been testing the new chat service for months and it now
makes its official debut. Chat, or instant messaging, is a fast track
for answers. VCU Librarians also take questions by email, phone and, of
course, face-to-face. Questions asked by email or left on voicemail are answered within 24 hours, except on weekends. Chat is anonymous: If you end the chat session before you're ready or get cut off, come back online.
Users are invited to give their feedback about the chat service by using chat.