Every Monday in April, we will be offering our drop-in research assistance sessions–Sources, Citations & Cookies– from 2:00 – 6:00 pm. If you are working on a research paper or project, and would like a bit of help from one of our research experts at ZSR, here’s your chance! Our drop-in research assistance sessions will be held in the Mandelbaum Reading Room on:
Monday, April 6th from 2:00-6:00 pm
Monday, April 13th from 2:00-6:00 pm
Monday, April 20th from 2:00-6:00 pm &
Monday, April 27th from 2:00-6:00 pm
We will have librarians available to help with any aspect of your research project from selecting a topic, to finding resources, to setting up Zotero or citing tricky sources. Delicious spring refreshments will also be on hand to help keep everyone fueled!
There is no need to sign up for a time, but if you would like to, you can reserve an available appointment time from our online appointment calendar.
After each Humans v Zombies event, I like to write a Gaz post on the event just to keep a record of the event, but this time I’m writing to talk about what looks like a tipping point in the event. The Spring 2014 HvZ had 120 participants, this year we had 158 (and last Fall we broke our record, surpassing 200 participants at an event!) While those numbers are great, what caught my attention was the participation by students from UNC, (they brought 40 students) UNC Central, (they brought 12 students) UNC-G, and NC State, each with just a few participants. While UNC has joined us in the past for the Spring event, we have never had this level of participation from this many schools! We consumed 20 pizzas, said goodbyes to two senior student leaders of the event, Brandon West from WFU and Tanner Fadero from UNC, and found volunteers to lead next year’s events. We also had door prizes (donated Nerf blasters) and a visit from the event’s creator, WFU alumnus John Walsh!
One unexpected cool addition to the event was a student with a Go Pro camera mounted on them to capture footage of the event! I hope ZSR can purchase some Go Pro cameras for student checkout in the future!
I want to thank the faithful volunteers who help with this event every semester! Susan Smith, Mary Beth Lock, Tim Mitchell, David Link and Chris Burris! And a shout out to Le’Ron Byrd who has not missed one of these events since he became the ZSR fellow! We now offer HvZ to our students in the Fall, Spring and Summer, and we host a joint event each summer for the LENS and Ben Franklin Fellows and another joint event for SPARC and the participants in the International Student Orientation. These hard working volunteers, along with the Student Activities Funds we apply for each year, make it possible for us to host these events for large numbers of students with very few staff and very little money!
Here is a link to Susan Smith’s amazing photos of the event!
If you’re like me, researching your family history has been one of those fascinating pastimes that has always seemed just out of reach. There are about a million different places to start and just as many different ways to get overwhelmed. Without a little guidance, it’s easy to write off genealogy as one of those projects that are just too big for one person.
We in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library wanted to change that. We wanted to convert hesitant researchers like me into knowledgeable, confident family historians. To do this, ZSR collaborated with the fantastic librarians at the State Library of North Carolina to create a free online genealogy course, RootsMOOC, which is now open for enrollment to the first 5,000 learners who sign up.
Through video interviews, tutorials, discussions, and structured learning activities, we’ll learn the very basics of genealogy research, such as the best places to get started, how to stay organized, and what kinds of documents and search tools you’ll encounter along the way. We’ll all share our research progress and help each other overcome roadblocks as we share our best tips and tricks in the online discussion forums. Librarians, archivists, and other experts from North Carolina and around the United States will be participating right alongside us, answering questions and pointing us all in the right direction.
If you’ve been looking for a place to get started on your family history research, RootsMOOC just might be the thing you’ve been waiting for. We can’t wait to get started!
When does the course start? How long does it last? RootsMOOC will run from March 23 to June 1, 2015.
How much does it cost? Nothing! RootsMOOC is 100% free!
How much time will I need to devote each week? That depends. We feel that the best way to learn is by doing, so we encourage all participants to do their own research concurrently with the course. This might involve calling up family members, visiting physical libraries, and diving into online repositories, all of which can take some time. There are no grades, however, so you’re free to spend as much or as little time on this course as you like.
What if I find I can’t keep up with the course? No worries. Life is busy! If you find that you’ve fallen behind, you’ll always be able to go back to the course later. The discussions might be closed by then, but all of the content should still be there. If you want to drop the course altogether, it’s easy to do that, too.
Last week, as part of my responsibilities as an Instruction and Outreach Librarian at ZSR, I was planning a variety of outreach events for Spring 2015. As I planned these events, I realized that many of these events happen away from ZSR or after hours, and I thought it might be worthwhile to take a minute and post about some of my favorite events! Most everyone at ZSR knows about events like “Capture the Flag” and “Humans v Zombies,” but you may not know about many of the other programs. For example, we do a brief session with the new students and transfer students who are starting at WFU mid-year. Just yesterday I met with seven new students, introducing them to ZSR, the Library website, and personal research sessions, making sure they were aware of the services at ZSR designed to help them succeed! We also work with local students in the International Baccalaureate (along with Bobbie Collins and Meghan Webb, shout out to them both for leading this charge!) Each semester I schedule session a session with the LGBTQ Center on campus to host one of their Thursday afternoon “Coffee Hours” (thanks to Angela Mazaris and Rob Powell) and talk about research resources. I do the same with the Office of Multicultural Affairs (thanks to Wesley Harris, Celina Alexander, and Darlene Starnes) and attend one of their weekly “Friday Morning Breakfasts” reminding students that the ZSR Library is there to help with research assistance and other services. Additionally, I team up with Faculty Fellows in the Residence Halls and attend “Drop-in Research Sessions” in some of the first-year residence halls! I’ll also be participating in a Wake Alternative Break over Spring Break 2015, traveling with a group of students and working the DC Central Kitchen (the model for the Campus Kitchen.) This trip is along the same lines as the South Course from a few years ago where our own Susan Smith and Lynn Sutton were embedded librarians.
As you can see from these examples, at ZSR we all do outreach everyday, it’s just the nature of librarianship in an academic library, so if you have any outreach ideas, please pass them along! I’m always open to new ideas and happy to collaborate! Some of the best outreach ideas have come from my fellow librarians! (Wanda Brown connected me with OMA several years ago to start that outreach event!) It was our former student assistant, John Walsh, who came to ZSR with the idea for “Humans v Zombies” as an outreach event!
Last Monday, ZSR held the last drop-in research session of our Sources, Citations & Cocoa series. This semester’s series started fast and furious, with twenty students stopping by within the first hour of the first session on November 10th. The following three sessions were also well attended, and overall, we had 90 students participate in Sources, Citations & Cocoa program this semester (compared to 35 last Spring, and 47 last Fall). We are excited to see these numbers grow, and are looking forward to offering more drop-in sessions in the Spring.
A follow-up survey was sent to participants to gather additional information about their experience with the drop-in session, and collect suggestions for future drop-in sessions. Based on the survey responses received:
53% of responding participants “strongly agreed” that the help they received in the session made their research paper or project better (an additional 40% agreed with this statement).
60% of participants who responded to the survey received assistance with citations during their drop-in session.
67% of respondents are “very willing” to attend other ZSR-sponsored events, based on their experience at the drop-in session.
87% of respondents were “very satisfied” with the overall experience of their drop-in session.
100% of participants who responded to the survey agreed that they were “very willing” to recommend drop-in research sessions to a friend or classmate.
A special thanks to all the ZSR librarians, staff, and student assistants that assisted with, and helped to promote, this event! I look forward to offering these drop-in sessions again next semester.
In an effort to help our students who remained on campus for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, the ZSR Library served lunch for student in the atrium on Saturday, November 29th, from 12-1:30pm! Sarah Jeong and I hosted the event, and thanks to the support of the ZSR Library, we were able to feed 52 students. Instead of pizza, we had sandwiches from Jimmy John’s, better allowing us to serve the dietary requests of everyone attending! Two faculty fellows, Professors Ana Wahl and Steve Gunkel, also attended the event.
While the event was primarily marketed to international students, all students were welcome! The majority of the students arrived between 12:00 and 12:30pm, but we had students continue to slowly trickle in until about 1:35pm. Around 1:45pm we took the leftover sandwiches to the lobby of Babcock Hall for the students.
Last year we tried hosting “Dinner and a Movie” on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, but only 34 students attended the pizza dinner, and only 6 stayed for the movie. We learned valuable lessons from that event, and this year we focused on the food and skipped the movie.
The students had nice comments about the event and appreciated our efforts!
ZSR Ambassador and Student Assistant, Megan Franks, reports on the Z. Smith Reynolds Library’s recent participation with Project Pumpkin!
On October 29th, the ZSR Library participated in a longstanding Wake Forest tradition, Project Pumpkin, for the first time. Project Pumpkin is a frighteningly fun time on the Upper Quad of the Wake Forest campus. Children from the Winston-Salem community are invited to go trick-or-treating at dozens of booths set up by student organizations and campus departments. Besides the pure joy of candy, there are also activities and games at each booth for the children to participate in. This year, over 900 children were brought to Wake Forest to participate! Of course, ZSR had to get in on the fun.
Hallo-Read book marks are ready for young readers to decorate with spooky stickers and art supplies.
ZSR staff members collaborated with members of the ZSR Ambassadors group on a Project Pumpkin booth. The Ambassadors are a group of students who plan fun events year-round in the library and promote the library’s services to the wider community. The staff members and the Ambassadors decided on a book-tacular “Hallo-Read!” theme. The ZSR booth was scattered with stickers and markers so the children could make their own bookmarks. There was also a handful of spooky Halloween books from the Education library on hand, in case anyone wanted a quick scare!
The President of the Ambassadors, Heidi Gall, and the Vice President, Madison Cairo, expressed their excitement in having a chance to serve the Winston-Salem community and also in getting more involved with the Wake Forest community of organizations. The volunteers at the booth throughout the day were all smiles as the kids approached in their cute costumes. The bookmarks were a hit – the kids loved being able to create something of their own to use in their books at home! And of course, the handfuls of candy weren’t a bad deal either.
All in all, everyone had a blast on this windy Fall day, celebrating the holiday and the community. The Ambassadors look forward to participating in more campus traditions, as well as giving back to the campus itself – with Wake the Library! Every year, the Ambassadors collaborate with ZSR staff to bring fun and food to the students studying hard for their final exams in the library. This year promises to be a great, grand time. And fear not, for there will be candy galore at this event as well!
Megan Franks is a senior from Kernersville, North Carolina. She is a psychology major. She works at the circulation desk and absolutely loves the library, and loves having the opportunity to flourish!
Starting November 10th, we will be offering our drop-in research assistance sessions– Sources, Citations & Cocoa! If you are working on a research paper or project, and would like a bit of help from one of our research experts at ZSR, here’s your chance! Our drop-in research assistance sessions will be held in ZSR Room 476 on:
Monday, November 10th from 3:30-7:30pm
Monday, November 17th from 3:30-7:30pm
Monday, November 24th from 3:30-7:30pm &
Monday, December 1st from 3:30-7:30pm
We will have librarians available to help with any aspect of your research project from selecting a topic, to finding resources, to setting up Zotero or citing tricky sources. Delicious winter bevvies and snacks will also be on hand to help keep you fueled!
There is no need to sign up for a time, but if you would like to, you can reserve an available time in our appointment calendar.
Thanks to some heavy marketing of Humans v Zombies during orientation (an OG&B ad, a mention at Project Wake: Civility, and a mention at Faculty House Calls) along with our huge HvZ event in mid-August for Worldwide Wake and SPARC, there was quite a large group of students eager to participate in Friday night’s Humans v Zombies event in ZSR! We had over 200 students attend!
I want to thank the volunteers, Susan Smith, Tim Mitchell, David Link, Mary Beth Lock, Le’Ron Byrd, and Chris Burris (for Tweeting!) We were excited that Dr. Adam Goldstein, who had come to an earlier HvZ with is kids this summer, returned and spoke to the students! Additionally, a few other staff brought their kids to join in the event! I also want to thank Brandon West, our student leader, who took over this year from HvZ founder, John Walsh! We started around 7:30pm, played three fast games and ended by 9pm!
As always, a big thanks to the Student Activities Fund for supporting these events! These events are truly a team effort! Check out the wonderful photos from the event (courtesy of Susan Smith) on the Library’s Flickr site!
Last summer, the Library began hosting “Humans V. Zombies” and “Capture the Flag” events for the LENS summer program, the new students who attend Summer II, and both the SPARC and International students who come to campus early! This year, we continued those programs, with a June “Capture the Flag” event for the 51 LENS students, a Humans V. Zombies event for the LENS and Ben Franklin Fellows, which totaled just over 100 students, and a Humans V. Zombies event on July 18th for the new student athletes and new Bridge students, a group of about 50 students!
On Monday, August 18th, we will host a Humans V. Zombies event for the SPARC students and Worldwide Wake students, and on Friday, August 29th, we will host HvZ for the new students as one of the last orientation events! Thanks to Le’Ron Byrd, who has already worked two of these events with me this summer, and to Mary Beth Lock who worked last Friday’s event! Thanks to everyone in ZSR who makes it possible for us to sponsor these events!