Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Soliciting Silent Auction Donations

On Tuesday, December 7, 2010, the St. Kate’s Special Library Association Student Group will host a Silent Auction fundraiser at the Holiday Party event sponsored by MALL and SLA at St. Kate's to raise funds for a scholarship. This scholarship will help to send a St. Kate’s MLIS student to the SLA Annual Conference being held in Philadelphia in June 2011.

We would love your help with donations!

Some of the most popular items include:
  • Gift certificates – Gas Stations, Restaurants, coffee/tea shops, movie theaters, video stores, book retailers, pet stores, craft stores, Home Depot, Best Buy – any place you frequent.
  • Gift baskets – wine/liquor, bath items, BBQ tools
  • Tickets to sporting or cultural events – MN Wild, Vikings, Guthrie
  • Memberships – museums, cultural
  • Hand-crafted items – jewelry, purses, scarves, quilts, knitted items
  • Photography or Artwork
  • An invitation to dinner or a home-cooked meal
  • An hour of housecleaning service or some babysitting
Anything YOU WOULD like to bid on!

Do you have a friend or relative with a creative flare, or deep pockets who would like to contribute something?

Donations may be dropped off at St. Kate’s in a box in the MLIS office near the reception desk. If you would like to schedule a pickup or have questions, please contact Carol Lynn O'Gara by either telephone at 612-986-3143 or e-mail at carollynnogara - at -

Please submit donations by Thursday, December 2, 2010.

Don’t forget, your donations are tax-deductible and greatly appreciated by the St. Kate’s SLA student group and the MLIS students at St. Kate’s.

Students, not able to donate an item?  The student group can also use help organizing the silent auction.  Please email Carol Lynn or the student group if you would like to help!

Thank you!!

Successful Fall 2010 Events

The student group sponsored two events in October, the Plymouth Library Tour and Speed Networking event and Salon #4 – How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All.  Both events were in collaboration with the MN chapter and it was great to see so many students and MN chapter members at the events.

On October 15, the student group hosted its first Salon series event for the Marilyn Johnson lecture, How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All, held at St. Catherine University.  Ms. Johnson spoke of how once she lost her research and IT department at Time magazine, she discovered the myriad of services available to her at her public library and how they have saved her personally and professionally.  She spoke the praises of librarians far and wide!

Afterwards, the dinner, drinks and discussion at Geordies 454 Bistro was well attended by MN Chapter members and St. Kate’s students and faculty.  And, the best surprise of all, Marilyn Johnson joined us for dinner!  For the first Salon hosting by the student group, it was great to see so many of you at the lecture and enjoy your conversation over a nice meal.  Thank you so much to all who attended!

Then on October 18, the student group and the MN Chapter hosted a fascinating tour of the Plymouth Library.  Jonathan Strand, the building’s architect, explained the technical green design details of the building and the many design considerations for meeting the needs of the Plymouth librarians and the Plymouth community.  After the tour, several students and MN chapter members stayed for an experiment in speed networking.  It was fun getting to know new people 4-5 minutes at a time!

The Student Group thanks the MN chapter for joining the St. Catherine University MLIS students for these events.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Salon RSVP Deadline Extended to October 13

There is still time to RSVP for MN Chapter's Salon 4:  Librarians to the Rescue, dinner, drinks and discussion following Marilyn Johnson's lecture.  Please RSVP by sending an email to by Wednesday, October 13.

See our original blog post for details, Salon 4 - Librarians to the Rescue

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Plymouth Library Architectural Tour + Speed Networking

The St. Catherine University’s Special Libraries Association invites you to attend:

Plymouth Library Architectural Tour + Speed Networking

Tour the new Plymouth Library with architect Jonathan Strand of Bentz/Thompson/Rietow and one of the Plymouth librarians.

The Plymouth Library opened this past spring in the city of Plymouth.  It is one of the latest public libraries to open in the Twin Cities area and it exemplifies some of the most cutting-edge ideas about what a contemporary library should be.  A feasibility study that evaluated options for remodeling the existing facility and constructing an all-new building resulted in the decision to design a new building to overcome the constraints of the existing facility.  This resolution opened the door for rethinking the library from the ground up.  It also coincided with Hennepin County’s making a new commitment to sustainability, particularly to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels.  With these decisions in place the stage was set and it was clear that this would not be library as usual.

Early on many far-reaching ideas surfaced regarding what a library could be in terms of programming and experience for patrons, and operational efficiency for staff.  In addition, designing for sustainability heavily influenced the outcome. The design team and owner/user teams evaluated many sustainability strategies to find the best value for energy-efficiency and enrichment of the library users’ experience. All of these ideas, themes, and strategies fueled innovation and resulted in a modern and flexible facility that transcends any one agenda.

Take a sneak peak:

Then stay for casual, speed-style networking with members of the Minnesota SLA Chapter.

Monday, October 18, 2010
6:00 – 7:00 p.m. Library Tour
7:00 – 8:00 p.m. Speed Networking

Plymouth Library
15700 36th Ave. N., Plymouth, MN 55446

Free for all

We don’t need a firm commitment, but we’d love to know if you intend to be there so we have an idea of how many to expect.

Please email Carol Lynn at or call with any questions 612-986-3143.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

MN Chapter Salon 4 - Librarians to the Rescue

The St. Kate’s SLA Student Group is extending the party!  You are invited to join Minnesota SLA Chapter members for a post-lecture discussion, dinner, and drinks following the book talk with author Marilyn Johnson on Friday, October 15, 2010.

The SGO is sponsoring Marilyn Johnson’s talk about her new book, “This Book is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All.”  (See the SGO announcement at

After the lecture, the St. Kate's SLA Student Group is hosting a group discussion at Geordies 454 Bistro as part of the Minnesota SLA Salon Series.  Please join MN SLA members and your fellow students for the post-lecture dinner and drinks from Geordies new Fall menu. This is a great social and networking opportunity!

Marilyn Johnson's talk will be followed by questions and a book signing.  Books will be available for purchase from Common Good Books.

Please RSVP for the Post-Lecture Gathering by October 8, 2010.  See below for more information and registration details.

5:00 to 7:00 p.m.  Author lecture, Q&A, Book signing
6:45 p.m. – Geordies 454 Bistro (close to campus)

Friday, October 15th at 5 p.m. (best to arrive a bit early so we can sit together as a group; we can meet at the back of the Jeanne D'Arc Auditorium)

Jeanne D’Arc auditorium in Whitby Hall on St. Catherine University campus
2004 Randolph Ave, St. Paul

Post-lecture drinks/dinner
Geordies 454 Bistro, just down the road from St. Kate's, on Snelling north of Randolph.
454 Snelling Ave S.

Off-street parking is available in the lot on all sides of Geordies.  Additionally, there is on-street parking on Snelling and James Avenue.

Free for lecture.
BYO (buy your own) for Geordies Bistro

Christine Simon and the St. Kate's SLA Student Group

Please send RSVP to
** Please indicate if you are planning on joining us at Geordies 454 Bistro - We will need a count for Geordies by October 8

Contact With Questions
Jen Hahs – or 612.342.9739
Christine Simon –

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Unveiling: A New St. Kate’s SLA Student Group Web Site!

The St. Kate’s SLA Student Group Web site has MOVED!   And, we have a new LOOK!

Check out our new site at and explore.  At our site you can find out about:
Who we are
Upcoming tours and events
Our past activities
Resources for study, the information profession, and the job search
Ways you can participate!!
We would like to thank Lacey Mamak, our out-going Webmaster, for her work on the new CSS design.  We appreciate her design efforts and getting us started on an updated look with a more maintainable CSS layout!!  Thank you Lacey!

So, be sure to update your Student Group Website bookmark!   (For a while our old URL,, will forward to the new address.)
Happy Browsing and check back frequently for events and ways you can Join us this Semester!

Friday, August 27, 2010

SLA Student Group Kickoff for 2010-2011

On Monday, August 30, 2010, the student group leadership is holding a 2010-2011 kickoff planning meeting. We are meeting at Brewberry's coffee shop near campus to begin planning events and library tours for the upcoming school year. This is a perfect opportunity to learn more about the student group and get more involved!

We have a few things in the works, but please join us and bring your ideas on how we can explore and learn more about special librarianship!

Brewberry's The Coffee Place - near St. Kate's campus
75 Fairview Avenue South, St Paul, MN 55105-1712

Monday, August 30, 2010
5:15 p.m.

Also, please join us even if you only want to learn more about the student group or meet this year's co-leaders. You don't have to jump in with both feet - you can do as much or as little as you are comfortable with.

Or, if you can't make it next week and have ideas to share or want to be involved in the future please email the student group at: stkatesla at

The 2010 Grieg Aspnes Scholarship Winner

The Minnesota SLA chapter announced the 2010 winner of their annual Grieg Aspnes Scholarship.  Congratulations go to Carol Lynn O'Gara - our own student group Co-Leader!  Here is the announcement made today from the Minnesota chapter:
Congratulations to Carol Lynn O'Gara, the winner of the 2010 Grieg Aspnes scholarship!
Carol is planning on graduating in May of 2011 from the St. Kate’s MLIS program.  She obtained her Bachelor of Arts from the College of St. Thomas and her law degree from the University of Minnesota.
Carol Lynn has served as one of the SLA Student Group co-presidents and will continue that role in the upcoming year.  She has especially enjoyed her management and technology classes at St. Kate’s, and while her interests cover many areas of special librarianship, her newest interest is law libraries.
She just accepted a job at Crane Engineering as a librarian/research assistant. Carol Lynn also continues to volunteer at the Minnesota State Service for the Blind.
The Grieg Aspnes Memorial Scholarship is a $2,000 award for a St. Catherine University MLIS student interested in special librarianship.  It was created in honor of Grieg Aspnes, a past president of the Minnesota Chapter and of the Special Libraries Association and an active leader in the SLA Information Technology and Advertising Divisions and Education Committee.  Grieg was also an advocate of the information profession and was a guest lecturer at the St. Catherine University and the University of Minnesota.  The scholarship requirements are an interest in special librarianship (as shown by course selection or work experience), leadership ability (demonstrated in either academic or extracurricular activities), and overall high academic achievement.  This scholarship is funded by the Minnesota Chapter of the Special Libraries Association, Grieg Aspnes memorial funds, and through a generous annual donation from Cargill.   A special thank you goes to Cargill for their involvement in creating an ongoing award in memory of their first Cargill Information Center Manager and a long-time employee, Grieg Aspnes.
Previous winners:
2005  Bethany Emerson
2006  Don Lorr
2007  Margaret Ostrander
2008  Erin Perry
2009  Liz Mead Cavert Scheibel
The Minnesota SLA Chapter runs the Grieg Aspnes Scholarship competition each spring.  See the MN Chapter Web site for more information about the scholarship and watch for next year's scholarship announcement in the spring!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Author Marilyn Johnson to Speak at St. Kate's

The Student Governance Organization (SGO) of St. Catherine University's MLIS program is hosting author Marilyn Johnson on October 15, 2010 at 5:00 p.m. in the Jeanne d’Arc auditorium on St. Catherine University’s St. Paul Campus. Ms. Johnson is the author of This Book is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All.

For more information see St. Kate's MLIS SGO Blog.

New Look!

Yes, you have landed at the right place. - your eyes are not playing tricks on you.  This is the St. Kate's Special Library Association Student Group blog!

This new look for our blog is a preview of the new look for the Student Group Web site.  The Web site redesign is in testing and will be launched before the start of the new school year.  The blog has been redesigned to match more closely with the new Web site design and create a cohesive online presence for the Student Group.

Watch here for the announcement when the Web site redesign goes live!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SLA in New Orleans: What a Great Time!

Polly Perkins was our 2010 SLA National Conference Scholarship Winner and she was off to New Orleans in June. Polly wrote of her experience at her first SLA National Conference for the MN SLA Chapter's Spring 2010 Bulletin. Her reflections are reprinted here:

SLA in New Orleans: What a Great Time!
Polly Perkins, Student Group Co-President

I was so excited to be awarded with the St. Kate's SLA Student Group Conference Scholarship. I was thrilled to be able to experience a truly professional networking and learning opportunity in a city I had not seen for over twenty years. When I arrived, I gathered my maps and headed out for a stroll around the French Quarter. I had no concept of the true definition of hot until I stepped outside my hotel and was steam broiled in about two seconds. As I walked and sweated, I was amazed at how lovingly the history had been preserved by the current residents and their refusal to give in to the devastation caused by Katrina. There is a unique flavor to New Orleans, some sort of amazing combination of gracious welcome along with an unabashed delight in the finer things in life; namely food and good times.

The SLA First-Timers and Fellows Connect event was a wonderful way to meet new people and run into several Minnesota friends. As I planned my attack on the sessions, I remembered their advice to leave open time to absorb all the input!

The keynote address by long time New Orleans residents Mary Matalin and James Carville was a fine start to the proceedings. The awards presentation had a special zip for the Minnesota contingent with Jim Tchobanoff being recognized for his years of contributions to SLA. As I selected sessions to attend, my biggest challenge was that so many really interesting sessions were at the exact same time! The choices were very difficult. There seemed to be information for everyone, no matter your expertise. The Taxonomy Division really outdid themselves by offering several sessions every day.

The INFO-EXPO was very overwhelming. I enjoyed wandering the hall and talking to the vendors about the wide variety of products. I had no idea there were so many specialty products for the different libraries.

Finally, I really enjoyed the chance to get to know people better. I met many people from other states and countries and really enjoyed talking to others about their experiences in their libraries, where they are now, and what they see in the future for their libraries. I was fortunate to be able to hang out with some fun MN Chapter members too! Thanks to all who helped make my experience enjoyable and memorable!

-reprinted with permission from Polly Perkins

This Fall we hope to have Polly come tell us about the New Orleans conference in person! For details, watch here at our blog, the student group Web site, and/or the listserv.

Reverse Mentoring Panel at MN Chapter Event

Our new Associate Dean for the St. Kate's MLIS program, Dr. Deborah Grealy, was introduced to the MN SLA Chapter at their meeting on Tuesday, May 18, 2010. Dr. Grealy spoke of her career in Special Librarianship and how she has always sought out the local SLA chapter. She also spoke of the accreditation process and her vision for St. Catherine University's MLIS program. She was warmly received by Minnesota's special librarians.

Following Dr. Grealy's talk, five St. Catherine MLIS graduates and current students sat on a Reverse Mentoring Panel. The purpose of the panel was to provide veteran librarians with some insight from new librarians. The panelists spoke of school and work experiences that have been most helpful to them, ways experienced librarians can help those of us new on the job, the importance of communication and business skills, and being a "pretend extrovert."

Many thanks go out to Liz Scheibel for planning and moderating the panel. Also, thank you to Caralyn Champa, Terri Horsmann, Erin Perry, and Christine Simon for speaking on the panel. Lastly, thank you to the Minnesota SLA Chapter for inviting St. Kate MLIS students and graduates for the opportunity to share their experiences.

Spring Event - The SLA Alignment Project

Before we begin the new school year, it is time to look back at some of the events we had last spring. On Monday, March 15 the student group joined with the SCU MLIS department and shared a Monday Night Event. The student group's portion of the evening was a presentation on the SLA Alignment Project. The following recap, from Polly Perkins, was published in the MN SLA Chapter's Spring 2010 Bulletin:

"Caralyn Champa, MLIS Alum 2009, and SLA Alignment Ambassador, presented at the March 1st Monday night event at St Kates on the Alignment Project, an intensive two-year research effort recently undertaken by the Special Libraries Association. The Alignment Project was aimed at understanding the value of the information and knowledge professional in today's marketplace and how to communicate that value. Caralyn's report covered the Projects results, information of interest to everyone concerned with the changing information landscape and SLA. Caralyn's PowerPoint presentation is available at:"

Thank you to Caralyn for her time and insight and to all of the MLIS students and faculty that came to hear about this important Special Library Association project.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Grieg Aspnes Memorial Award

Apply now for the Grieg Aspnes Memorial Award, a scholarship awarded to a St. Catherine University MLIS student who is interested in Special Librarianship. The scholarship is awarded by the Minnesota SLA Chapter.

The following information is from the MN SLA Chapter:

The Grieg Aspnes Memorial Award

$2,000 Award for a SCU Student Interested in Special Librarianship

Library and Information Science students, either full-time or part-time, are invited to apply for an award of up to $2,000.00 and complimentary membership in the Special Libraries Association and the Minnesota Chapter of SLA. Only one such award will be granted annually and is limited to students who will graduate in December 2010 or later. The criteria are:

  1. Interest in special librarianship, as shown by course selection or past experience;
  2. Leadership abilities, demonstrated in either academic or extracurricular activities;
  3. Overall academic achievements.

Students who are interested in applying should submit a letter addressing the criteria listed above, a resume, and a copy of their transcript of courses in library and information science to:

Dr. Deborah Grealy, Associate Dean
MLIS Program
St. Catherine University
2004 Randolph Avenue m.s. 4125
St. Paul, MN 55105

The application deadline is Monday, May 24th, 2010.

The Award will be formally presented at the September 2010 meeting of the Minnesota Chapter.

The Grieg Aspnes Memorial Award is in honor of Grieg Aspnes, a talented librarian at Cargill, a past president of the Special Libraries Association, and an active leader in its Minnesota Chapter, Information Technology and Advertising Divisions, and Education Committee. Grieg was also a strong advocate of the information profession and was a guest lecturer in the library schools at St. Catherine’s and the University of Minnesota. This award, made only to St. Catherine University, is funded by the Minnesota Chapter of the Special Libraries Association and the Cargill Information Center for the purpose of encouraging the recipient to pursue
a career in special librarianship.

St. Catherine University expresses its appreciation to the Aspnes family, the Minnesota Chapter of SLA and Cargill for providing this grant award.

Monday, April 5, 2010

A Look in to Art Librarianship

On April 1, two groups of about five St. Kate's MLIS students traded an hour of beautiful spring weather for a tour of the library at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, and the trade was well worth it!

Head Librarian Janice Lurie gave us an introduction to the library/archives and the purpose it serves for the museum as a whole. She gave us all very good advice on the need to stay proactive and to work collaboratively with institutional colleagues, while keeping the organization's overall vision and mission in mind.

We heard about the wide variety of patrons at the library from Assistant Librarian Jessica McIntyre. She wowed everyone with her ability to answer obscure questions from the public, from students, and from museum curators.

NHPRC (National Historical Publications and Records Commission) Project Archivist Stephanie Kays told us about the projects that she works on as part of a three year grant. She is working with museum staff on document management issues, and also has the daunting yet enjoyable task of bringing organization to the Institute's archival records (dating from 1883). These archives document the history of how art museums developed in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

All of the librarians pointed out interesting and beautiful items in the library and it seemed to me that attendees were all thinking, "You have really cool jobs!" We saw signature books (yes, books of signatures) in the reference collection, auction catalogs, and old letters that tell the story of the museum's beginnings.

Janice invited all of us to return to the library with questions about their work, or with regular reference questions. She also mentioned that the library will soon have its own affinity group within museum supporters (as the various art departments already do) - email the library for more information about this opportunity to support the library and the museum.

Many thanks to Janice and her staff for having us! They clearly have a wonderful time working at the MIA, and the Minnesota arts community is fortunate to have these librarians!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Great Turnout for E-Porfolio Event

We had twenty-one people, including four alumni, come learn about how to create an e-portfolio for marketing yourself in the job market. Thanks for the great turnout!

If you are interested in taking Ellen's e-portfolio class it is offered, free of charge, fall and spring semesters to SCU students and alumni. Watch the KateWay News. If you were unable to attend on March 8 you will soon be able to download the handout of e-portfolio resources from the SCU MLIS Web site. Watch for it on the Events Archive page.

Monday, March 15, 2010

The SLA Alignment Project

Caralyn Champa, MLIS Alum 2009, and SLA Alignment Ambassador, presented on the Alignment Project, an intensive two-year research effort undertaken recently by the Special Libraries Association at the March 1st Monday night event at St Kates. The Alignment Project was aimed at understanding the value of the information and knowledge professional in today's marketplace and how to communicate that value. Caralyn's report covered the Projects results, information of interest to everyone concerned with the changing information landscape and SLA. Caralyn's Powerpoint presentation is available at:

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Professional E-Portfolio Event

Are you beginning or in the middle of a job search?

Come learn about an exciting way to market yourself, the principles of a good portfolio, how to tailor it for your MLIS skill set, and tips for using an e-portfolio in your job search.

The St. Kate's SLA Student Group and the St. Kate's MLIS department are proud to present:

Marketing Yourself with a Professional E-Portfolio
Monday, March 8, 2010
6:30 - 8:00 PM
Coeur de Catherine, room 20

Ellen Richter-Norgel, Director of Student Retention at St. Catherine University, will take us through the process of creating an electronic portfolio that will help you stand out in a crowd, especially in this tight job market. Eight years ago Ellen developed the workshop "Developing Your Professional E-Portfolio." She continues to teach this free course to St. Kate undergrads, graduate students, and alumni. Ellen will discuss what a portfolio is and what it isn't, the important elements in a portfolio, things to include and what to leave out. We will also discuss tailoring your message around important MLIS skill sets. In addition, Ellen has many examples of e-portfolios to share.

Come join us!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

SLA 2010 Conference Scholarship Awarded

We're pleased to announce that the winner of this year's conference scholarship is Polly Perkins. The scholarship, up to $2000 in reimbursements, will send Polly to the SLA 2010 Annual Conference in New Orleans this June.

Polly Perkins has been a member of both the SLA Minnesota Chapter and the St Kate's Student SLA Group for two years. She has been part of the leadership team for the Student Group this academic year and plans to graduate in May of 2011. Last year, she parlayed a student library internship at Enclos Corp, a design/build specialty construction firm in Eagan, into a full-time position as their solo librarian. She is in the middle of rolling out an online knowledge center at Enclos and is very excited to attend her first SLA conference. Librarianship is Polly's third career;previously, she was a hospital administrator specializing in EPA/OSHA regulations and adult education, and later, she was a landscape designer for a local nursery. She is grateful for the opportunity to learn from the forward thinkers at the SLA conference and is looking forward to bringing back all her new-found knowledge to share.

Look forward to reading about her experience in the MN SLA chapter bulletin following the conference.

Congratulations, Polly!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Apply Now for Conference Scholarship

We are taking applications until January 31 for the Student Group's annual scholarship for attending the SLA conference. Details can be found at (please make sure to read the whole page / all the requirements).

Any questions can be emailed to the address on that page.

The scholarship is for reimbursements up to $2000 - plenty to cover all your essential expenses!

Get the details on the conference at .