Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Library Staffer Joins Katrina Relief

Have you ever looked at pictures of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina in some of our southern states last fall, and wished that you could do something to help? Marion Mirehouse, Library Specialist at the Alexandria Campus recently had the opportunity to do just that, when she joined a volunteer-in-missions group from her church for a work trip to Gulfport, Mississippi. The team spent a week there doing demolition and construction—cleaning moldy debris, wallboard, and insulation out of flooded homes, and putting new insulation and drywall back into other homes that had already been cleaned out, disinfected, and dried out. The work was hard, but very satisfying. Just seeing the gleaming eyes and the smiles on the faces of those families, who were that much nearer to being able to move back into their homes, made every blister, mashed finger, and tired muscle seem extremely worthwhile.

See how NVCC is helping the Hurricane Katrina Relief effort here:

Friday, January 13, 2006

Book Review Digest Turns 100!

The Library wishes a Very Happy Birthday to Book Review Digest, which turned 100 years old in 2005! A library classic for a century, the Book Review Digest

"provides excerpts from and citations to reviews of current adult and juvenile fiction and non-fiction. Over 7,000 English-language books are covered by the database each year. Concise, critical evaluations are chosen from 109 leading American, British and Canadian periodicals in the humanities, social and general sciences, as well as library review media. Covering a wide range of review media and offering an enormous variety of reviews -- all carefully excerpted to convey the diversity of critical opinion on a title -- Book Review Digest is the most convenient way for patrons to obtain information on prominent new books. "

The Alexandria Campus Library owns the complete series.

(pictured: Bruce Carroll, Technology/Circulation Librarian, with the most recent Book Review Digest from 2005, and Anne Anderson, Reference/ Instructional Services Librarian, with the very first 1905 volume).

A lot changes in 100 years. In 1905

  • Only 14 percent of houses in the US had a bathtub
  • Only 8 percent of houses had a telephone (land-line!!)
  • There were only 8,000 automobiles in the US
  • There were only 45 states in the United States
  • The tallest building in the world was the Eiffel Tower

Library Use Continues to Rise!

Use of the Library and its resources continues to rise appreciably. In the Fall and Spring semesters of '05, library patrons made over 340,000 visits to the library. Those patrons checked out over 10,000 items in Fall '05, a 20% increase over the same period of '04.

Students also increasingly make use of the Library's electronic resources, which can be accessed from on and off campus. Database use increased, on average, over 40% this year. Some of our star performers in the electronic realm included JSTOR (full-text online scholarly articles) which experienced a 78% increase in use. Other standouts included ProQuest (online magazine, newspaper, and journal articles, including full-text historic issues of the Washington Post and New York Times dating back to the 19th century) with a 33% increase and Safari Books (full-text computer and technology books) the use of which grew 37%.

As Library collections continue to grow, Library users respond with ever greater use of resources. The Library is continually adding new print and electronic sources, and constantly reviewing the services provided to meet student needs and demands.

For more information about the Library's services, visit the Alexandria Campus Library Homepage: http://www.nvcc.edu/alexandria/library/

To search for an online article, check the Library database page: http://www.nvcc.edu/Library/databases.htm

To search for a book in the Library collection, search the Library Catalog: http://vccslinc.vccs.edu/F/?func=find-b-0&local_base=nvcc

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Welcome Back!

Welcome back to Spring Semester 2006 (and special WELCOME to NVCC if this is your first semester with us!). The Library got the new semester off to a roaring start by conducting Mini-Tours for new and returning students providing an overview of the Library's services and collections to students interested in getting a sight-seeing tour of all the Library has to offer. Check the fliers posted around campus, or the notice-board in the Bisdorf lobby, or check with any Library Staff member to find tour times. 15-minute tours will cover borrowing, computer availablity and capabilities, how to print, where to find help with research, where to go to study with groups, where to find silent study, where to find the Library's Feature Film collection, where to find new editions of magazines and newspapers, updates on what's new in the library, a chance to ask questions plus much, much more. Plus all participants are entered in a drawing with the potential to win Starbucks gift cards! Take a tour today!

Visit the Library FAQ to find out answers to more questions: http://www.nvcc.edu/alexandria/library/libfaq.htm

Library Staff are also busy assisting students with registration, scheduling Library Instruction sessions for faculty, getting new books on the shelves, preparing the reserve collection for a new semester, processing inter-campus and inter-library loans, ordering new magazine and newspaper subscriptions, setting up links to new databases, and helping students find resources and materials for new classes.

Welcome to Spring 2006!