Monday, March 31, 2008

New Books at the Dick Smith Library

Do you know you can check a monthly list of new books added to the library collection? Go to for lists through February 2008. Some of the latest titles include:

The complete idiot's guide to learning Spanish
Making the team: a guide for managers
A guide to writing sociology papers
A woman for president: the story of Victoria Woodhull
"Ace" any test
Picasso: painting against time

Don't see the book you want? Remember that you can suggest book titles for the library to purchase at We will even let you know when the book is ready to check out!!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Colleges deliver basic skills of all kinds. Should agriculture be part of the mix?

Last month the Svalbard Global Seed Vault was officially opened. The seed vault was created as a global effort to protect the world's food source in the event of future natural or man-made disasters. The vault contains 268,000 distinct samples of seeds from across the world.

“With climate change and other forces threatening the diversity of life that sustains our planet, Norway is proud to be playing a central role in creating a facility capable of protecting what are not just seeds, but the fundamental building blocks of human civilization,” said Norway’s Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg.

In an article this month from the Chronicle of Higher Education, some are wondering "even if seeds survive climate change and mass extinction in a bombproof vault, will anyone remember how to cultivate them?"

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Meet Our Staff: Ruth Chege

Ruth Wanjiku Kamau Chege
Graduate Assistant
Room 113, Bldg 102
Oveta Culp Hobby Memorial Library
Tarleton Central Texas Campus
Killeen, Texas

I am a part time library assistant. I joined the library in the fall of 2004 as a student worker. As the tradition goes, I was initiated into the Tarleton – Central Texas library by being assigned to shelve the children’s section for the entire semester. Along with that I started learning how to work the circulation desk, periodicals desk, processing books and learning to repair books. For my first summer I experienced the inventory process. Long and repetitive is the description I would give for that process. All in all it has been a fun, new, rigorous experience. Three and half years later I still enjoy working here; I have met wonderful people and learned to appreciate all the work that goes into running a library.

During my free time I enjoy watching movies, travelling, and reading. My favorite books of all time are: The River and the Source by Margaret Ogola, Facing Mt. Kenya by Jomo Kenyatta and Pains of a Maid (Pacesetters series) by A. Mkhonza. [As you may have guessed from these books, Ruth grew up in Kenya.]

Friday, March 14, 2008

Women's History Month -- Learn More about American History

American Women through Time (created by Ken Middleton, a reference librarian at Middle Tennessee State University Library) provides "two approaches for the study of specific time periods in American women's history."
  • Timelines in each section link to "specific events with relevant online sources, such as diaries and letters, photograph collections, and lectures by historians."
  • The sections offer guides "to research sources that are appropriate for the specified time period." Categories included advertising, historical statistics, newspapers, and quilts.

This easy-to-use, informative site offers access to interesting, wide-ranging information about American Women.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Meet Our Staff: Kay Wiley

Kay Wiley
Acquisitions Associate
Dick Smith Library – Main Floor – room 111

I have been a Library Specialist II for seven years. My job involves the library’s accounts payable functions, receiving and verifying of shipments, and ordering supplies.

I have worked many different jobs in my life, from a cherry packer to cook/laundress at a children’s summer camp to telephone operator. Once for six months I worked three jobs: computer specialist, gas station attendant, and catering.

My spare time is spent with my three teenagers, reading, friends and church. I have a senior, sophomore and seventh-grader. All are active in school extracurricular and church activities.

I don’t have a favorite book but I read constantly. I like mystery, paranormal, romance, and thriller genres. I have been known to read 3-4 books at the same time (which drives my husband crazy).

I have been to Ireland, England, British Columbia, Mexico and Hawaii. I would like to visit Ireland again, New Zealand, Tahiti and Scotland. I am a California girl and very proud of it. I have lived in most of the western states, as well as Indiana and Texas. I prefer the arid climates over humidity.

In December 2007, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, but fortunately it was in the early stages and I only need a lumpectomy and radiation treatments. This was a very positive experience for me in that I suffered minimal pain or side effects. I was blessed by many prayers said in my behalf.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Spring Break Reading

This is a little early, in order to give you time to collect some good reads for Spring Break.

George Eberhart is senior editor of American Libraries, and offers a list of books concerning libraries and murder mysteries. "Murder in the library, as a literary plot, holds a certain peculiar fascination for many readers.... Some of the plots revolve around specific rare books, but most are set in mythical academic and research libraries in the United States and United Kingdom...."
Read more from Mr. Eberhart here.

Reading is not known to be hazardous to your health, so get the hammock out of storage, and curl up with a pile of good books for Spring Break!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Meet Our Staff: Scott Pope

Scott Pope
Acquisitions Librarian
Dick Smith Library – Main Floor – room 111A

As Acquisitions Librarian, I purchase books for the library, working closely with the faculty to match our holdings to the university curriculum. I have been in this position for five years. I’m also a Tarleton alumnus, graduating with a B.S. in mathematics back in 1993. I am the library’s liaison to the Biological Sciences department as well as the Educational Leadership & Policy Studies department.

I love books so much, both non-fiction and fiction, so it is hard to pick a favorite, but as a child I liked the Boxcar Children mysteries and the Encyclopedia Brown detective stories, and as an adult I really enjoy P.D. James mysteries.

Traveling is in my blood. I grew up on a military base in Heidelberg, Germany, and also worked for Delta Air Lines. Within the past few years I’ve been to Switzerland and England.

I watch a lot of TV. My current favorites are House, Dexter, and Torchwood.

I have a wonderful female cat, Cosmo, who tolerates me.

Monday, March 3, 2008

To help celebrate E-Book Week, March 2-8, Epublishers Weekly came up with 30 Benefits of Ebooks.
Here are the top 10:

  1. Ebooks promote reading.
  2. Ebooks are good for the environment.
  3. Ebooks preserve books.
  4. Ebooks, faster to produce than paper books, allow readers to read books about current issues and events.
  5. Ebooks are easily updateable.
  6. Ebooks are searchable.
  7. Ebooks are portable.
  8. Ebooks (in the form of digital audio books) free you to do other activities while you are listening.
  9. Ebooks can be printable.
  10. Ebooks defy time: they can be delivered almost instantly.