Saturday, December 19, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Willi the Library fish wishes all the Alexandria Campus community a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year:

Willie recommends getting in the seasonal frame of mind with a good old Dickensian read:

If you know what "smoking bishop" is, enjoy some of that as well (you have to read to the end of the book to find out why!).

Goodbye Final Exams

As Final Exams come finally to an end, the Library returns to normal hours.

During the last week of classes and final exams week the Library opened early at 8am and closed late at 11pm.  

Over 110 students were served before 8.30 in the morning and over 500 stayed late with us (with coffee, cookies, chips, snacks and sodas at 10pm) for a grand total of 625 dedicated undergrads studying for exams, finishing research and writing papers.  Almost none of them did this:

Friday, December 11, 2015

Come be cosy with us...

Get a cup of hot cocoa (Hot Chocolate Bar Monday Dec 14th!!!) or a cup of coffee and a cookie (study snacks at 10pm Monday - Thursday!!!!) and enjoy our book fireplace:

Yes, our fireplace is made with de-accessioned National Geographic Magazines!

Monday, December 07, 2015

Extended Hours

Back by popular demand!  This week and next week the Library will be open extra hours for the last week of classes and final exams.

The Library will be open from 8am - 11pm Monday through Thursday and 
8am - 6pm on Fridays.

Stay up late with us and enjoy Late Night Study Break at 10pm.

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Binge Watch

Binge-Watch:  to watch multiple episodes of a TV show in a short period of time!

Check out one the Library's DVD series.

Check out

Doctor Who
Arrested Development
Orange is the New Black
Game of Thrones
Mr Bean
One Foot in the Grave
Good Neighbours
Star Trek (Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager)
Absolutely Fabulous
The Young Ones
Flight of the Conchords
Orphan Black
Yes, Minister
Upstairs Downstairs
The Forsyte Saga (original and reboot!)

And many more!  Visit the DVD section soon!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Library displays

Ever wonder what prompts or inspires the book displays that appear on rotating basis in the Alexandria Campus Library?

It might be a commemoration of historical events, like the Battle of Agincourt, the 600th anniversary of which was on 25 October:

Or it might be in recognition of a national holiday (Veteran's Day, 11 November):

Soldier: A Visual History of the Fighting Man.  U750 G725x

Or promoting a campus event:

The Alexandria Campus Library, with funding from the Office of Student Life and support from teaching faculty and the Academic Success Center, hosted three Networking 101 events on concurrent days (November 10-11-12).

Or advertising new and improved campus services:

Visit the Alexandria Campus's brand new Open Computer Lab in AA332, now open for business!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Virginia Library Association Annual Conference

Several members of the NOVA Libraries Team journeyed to Richmond for the Annual conference of the Virginia Library Association, including librarian Katie Hoskins and Associate Dean Matt Todd.

Katie presented on best practices with online research guides (Libguides) and also on the job search strategies prompted by the successful job search workshop (see below).

Matt volunteered at sessions on Open Educational Resources, successful outreach to teaching faculty, redesigning academic libraries to meet demands of the future, and NASA (!).

Above: [l-r:  Paul Chapman, Katie Hoskins, Cori Strickler (Bridgewater College]

On Saturday May 30th 2015 the Alexandria Campus Library, in partnership with the Virginia Library Association hosted a Job Search Workshop.  Katie Hoskins organized the event, Matt Todd provided welcoming remarks and presented on interview strategies, Paul Chapman conducted resume reviews.  One of the co-presenters was from our regional partner the Alexandria Public Library.  Cori Strickler from Bridgewater College co-organized the workshop)

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Willi reads

Willi has expanded his reading horizons to a fascinating book where literature meets photography:

Fried, Dinah,  Fictitious dishes : an album of literature's most memorable meals

PN56.F59 F75 2014

Fictitious Dishes serves up a delectable assortment of photographic interpretations of culinary moments from contemporary and classic literature. Showcasing famous meals such as the madcap tea party from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, the watery gruel from Oliver Twist, the lavish chicken breakfast from To Kill a Mockingbird, the stomach-turning avocado-and-crabmeat salad from The Bell Jar, and the seductive cupcakes from The Corrections, this unique volume pairs each place setting with the text from the book that inspired its creation. Interesting food facts and entertaining anecdotes about the authors, their work, and their culinary predilections complete this charming book, which is sure to whet the appetites of lovers of great literature and delicious dishes.

[the author is Dinah Fried.  Get it: Fried Fish???]

Friday, October 09, 2015

Midterm Madness/ De-Stress for Success

Students took advantage of the Library's extended hours this week to study for final exams (for the 8-week session) and midterms and projects (for the 16-week session).  Over 160 students used the library during the extended hours period.

The De-Stress for Success club served coffee and snacks in the afternoon, coloring kits were on offer, and study-break snacks were served in the evenings.

One student said "I love NOVA!"  and another wondered "If this is what they do for midterms what do you suppose happens at finals?"

Tuesday, October 06, 2015


Need extra time to study for midterms??

Your campus Library is here for you!  The Library will be open until 11pm October 5-8, and until 6pm on the 9th.

Come study late with us!

Snacks at 10!

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Willi the Library Fish

Meet Willi, the Library's resident goldfish:

Goldfish carry fortuitous connotations in many cultures.  They are one of the symbols of the Buddha. They represent good luck, prosperity and happiness.  They are an important part of the Persian New Year Celebration.  Willi came to us from a Noruz display the Library mounted this past March. 

Willi is a literate fish.  Check here to see what Willi is reading:

Willi is currently reading Battleships and Aircraft Carriers 1900-Present  V815 B38x 2013

Watch out for depth charges!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Bye Bye Bruce

NOVA faculty and staff gathered at the home of Jean Hogan (one-time Media Librarian at the Alexandria Campus) to wish a fond farewell to Bruce Carroll, who retires at the end of September.

The College presented Bruce with a plaque and Library staff presented Bruce with a clock, memory book and cake.

Defying traffic, the guest of honor arrives.

The plaque honoring 24 years at NOVA.

Bruce (and grandchildren!) peruse the memory book.

The Library's tribute to Bruce's epic commute.

(l-r: Nikki Neal, Registrar; Jean Hogan, hostess; Alice Headley, counselor, retired; Keith Wynn, counselor; Frances Villagran-Glover, LTR Dean)

(l-r:  Kevin O'Hagan, library specialist; Nicole Nguyen, Dean's assistant; Bruce Carroll, almost retired; Kim Gross, LTR Office Manager).

Friday, September 25, 2015

Come Home to Create: Celebrating NOVA's 50th

On September 23rd the Alexandria Campus Library celebrated NOVA’s 50th Anniversary with a retrospective exhibition of alumni art.  The Library welcomed special guests Dr Scott Ralls, alumni artists, community partners from Alexandria Public Library and Resurrection Church, neighbors, faculty, staff and students to a gala opening.  

(above, l-r:  Matt Todd, LTR Associate Dean; Dr Scott Ralls, NOVA President; Melanie Medina, Library Specialist and NOVA alumna)

The exhibit highlights the artistic talents of NOVA students, including works dating back 30 years, up to current work by recent graduates.

In addition, student musicians Owen Squire and Margaret Bisulca provided live entertainment from the keyboard.  

(above:  Margaret Bisulca at the keyboard.  The image on the book display is an architectural rendering of the Bisdorf Building)

Also, two of our alumni artists are also currently exhibiting in galleries in downtown DC.   Susan Grace has a piece in the Library show and is currently exhibiting at the Hillyer Art Space.

Which received a positive review in the Washington Post recently.

And Fithi Abraham, who has three pieces in the Library show, is currently exhibiting at the G40 Art Summit.

Find our more about Sue ( and Fithi (

(above:  l-r:  President Ralls; Page Carr, PHT faculty; Sue Grace, alumna artist; Jimmie McClellan, Dean of Liberal Arts)  

(above l-r:  Courtney Boland, ASC Coordinator; Michelle Jerney-Davis, Library Specialist; Paul Chapman, Collection Development Librarian)

The work of over 30 alumni artists is showcased on both levels of the library, including painting, ceramics, photography, sculpture, lithography, conceptual work, graphic design, mixed media and collage.  The exhibit runs until November 27th in Bisdorf 232.  

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Rock the Vote

The Alexandria Campus Library celebrated Constitution Day (September 17th) by hosting a Rock the Vote voter registration drive.

Library staff used iPads to assist students to register to vote.

(above: Library Specialist Melanie Medina assists students to register to vote)

Happy Constitution Day!!

Friday, September 18, 2015

Come home to Create

Please join the Alexandria Campus in celebrating NOVA's 50th Anniversary at the Library's Retrospective Student Art Show:

Come Home to Create: Retrospective Art Show
Alexandria Campus Alumni Art Exhibit
Celebrating NOVA’s 50th Anniversary
Opening Reception Wednesday, September 23rd
5.00 – 7.30pm: Library (AA232)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Honors Meet and Greet

The Alexandria Campus Honors Program hosted a Meet and Greet in the Library on Wednesday September 16th to reach out to students and promote honors offerings.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Academic Success Conference a Success

The ASC conference was a huge success, not least with the Library open houses at 3pm each day.  Prizes were raffled, snacks were consumed and a good time was had:

Thursday, September 03, 2015

Academic Success Conference comes to Alexandria

Alexandria Learning and Technology Resources, hosted the first ever Student Success Conference from September 1-3.  Over 50 sessions provided opportunities for students to meet faculty, staff and each other, to explore campus resources, facilities and services, learn tools for college success and win prizes.

(above;  LTR Associate Dean Matt Todd, and ASC Coordinator Courtney Boland (right) at the Library open house at which prizes, including copies of the Honors Club Book selections, Barnes & Noble gift cards and an iPad mini were raffled off).

Many thanks to the Campus Library, Technology in Learning and Teaching (TILT), the Open Computer Lab (OCL), The Academic Success Center (ASC) and Campus Information Technology (IT) who provided personnel, resources and support for the conference.

Funding was provided by the Office of Student Life.

Special thanks to our teaching faculty and admin faculty partners who helped out.

And thanks to all students who attended!!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

LTR Newsletter available

Read all about what's new and exciting in Learning and Technology Resources in our Spring Newsletter.

(Alexandria LTR Dean Frances Villagran-Glover and OCL Supervisor Abid Mahmood at LT Cross-Campus Day in June)

(Vader is Coming!  Look Busy! Loudoun Librarian Dana Beltran and Alexandria LTR Associate Dean Matt Todd)

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Welcome to Fall 2015!

The Alexandria Library Staff welcome all new and returning students to NOVA for Academic Year 2015-16!!

The Alexandria Library's mission is to promote student success in their academic endeavors.

The Library provides:

Assistance with research from professional research librarians

Free access to course textbooks and course materials

Study space for individual and group study

Assistance with citations (everyone's favorite!!)

50,000+  print books

Thousands of online articles and books

Over 200 electronic databases shared by Virginia's colleges and universities

National and international newspapers

Foreign language materials

Streaming video

Feature films

Popular reading (novels)

Instruction to classes across the curriculum

Monday, August 17, 2015

Kevin O'Hagan recognized

Library Specialist Kevin O'Hagan was acknowledged in NVCC History Professor Dr Jim Baer's new book,

Anarchist Immigrants in Spain and Argentna.HX925 B34x 2015

Thanks to Kevin for his outstanding efforts to supoprt faculty research through InterLibray Loan Services.

Faculty requiring research resources beyond the NOVA Libraries' collections can contact Kevin ( to arrange for free delivery of materials from any Library in the US.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Biological Clock

Are you an early bird or a night owl? How do your circadian rhythms impact your daily life?

Your faithful correspondent is not a morning person, so opening the Library at 8am was most definitely not a welcome experience.

But what makes us this way?

Internal Time: Chronotypes, Social Jet Lag, and Why You're So Tired. QP84.6 R6413 2012

"Early birds and night owls are born, not made. Sleep patterns may be the most obvious manifestation of the highly individualized biological clocks we inherit, but these clocks also regulate bodily functions from digestion to hormone levels to cognition. Living at odds with our internal timepieces, Till Roenneberg shows, can make us chronically sleep deprived and more likely to smoke, gain weight, feel depressed, fall ill, and fail geometry."

Turns out those who don't like mornings aren't just slackers and those who can't push through to midnight aren't just lame.  They are made that way.

Rhythms of Life: The Biological Clocks that Control the Daily Lives of Every Living Thing.  QP84.6 F67 2004b

"Why can’t teenagers get out of bed in the morning? How do bees tell the time? Why do some plants open and close their flowers at the same time each day? 
The authors tell us that biological clocks are embedded in our genes and reset at sunrise and sunset each day to link astronomical time with an organism’s internal time. They discuss how scientists are working out the clockwork mechanisms and what governs them, and they describe how organisms measure different intervals of time, how they are adapted to various cycles, and how light coordinates the time within to the external world."

above: NOT a morning person.

Tuesday, August 04, 2015


The project to relocate the Testing Center to the first floor and open a new Open Computer Lab (OCL) on the third floor has reached the stage that impacts the Library.  The upper level of the Library is currently closed and access to the Library Classroom (AA327) is limited.

The emergency door and surrounding wall were demolished.

A temporary "wall" now encloses the upper level of the Library near the Classroom and "Cornell Lounge".

A new door will provide access from the current Reading Lab to the corridor (formerly quiet carrel-study space in the Library).

Next?  construction of a new wall & emergency door on the upper level, finishing the entrance to the Reading Lab and carrying on with construction of a new OCL.