5
Oct15

Boston Public School Desegregation project commences

Posted by: Giordana Mecagni

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Freedom SchoolThe 2014-2015 school year marked the 40th anniversary of Boston Public School (BPS)’s court-ordered school desegregation.  To commemorate this event, BPS is building a multi-grade curricular unit for students to study the city’s school desegregation and “busing” crisis.  Before this unit was created, students learned about integration efforts only through the case study of Little Rock, AK.  Neglecting to address, understand, and own Boston’s own civil rights struggles perpetuates the notion that the Civil Rights Movement targeted injustice and segregation only in the South, when in truth, Boston’s struggles were equally important and difficult.

To assist this effort, Northeastern’s University Archives and Special Collections is coordinating a multi-archive scanning project whose goal is to make available archival material that relates to what how and why busing happened in Boston, as well as the after effects it had on the community.  The goal is to create a digital library of material that can be widely disseminated for both curricular and scholarly use.

This effort has been made possible by a gift from the Boston Library Consortium (BLC), whose leadership has been essential to this project.

This School Desegregation and ”Busing”  Digital Library is a lightweight, nimble project that attempts to lay the technical and descriptive groundwork for cross-institutional collaboration through the technical infrastructure of the DPLA and Digital Commonwealth.  It also serves as the kernel of what all hope becomes a long-standing collaboration between BPS and local archives.   In an ideal world, all 57,000 BPS students visit an archive during their K-12 years.  Realistically, digitizing this material allows teachers unfettered access to a deep pool of primary source material which can inspire students to learn more about the history of their own city and become emerging leaders.

The BLC members initiating this effort are University Archives and Special Collections at UMass Boston, the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections, The State Library of Massachusetts’ Special Collections, and Boston College’s John J. Burns Library of Rare Books and Special Collections.  Additional archival partners include The Moakley Archive and Institute at Suffolk University and the Boston City Archives.

Partner institutions are scanning material that illuminate the complexity of state- and city-wide politics, community activism and advocacy, and all parties’ reactions to national and local legislation.  The time frame covered originates with the Brown v. Board of Education decision (1954), works through the Civil Rights Act (1964), into and past the Morgan v. Hennigan case (1974), and the resulting citywide unrest.  The collection aims to illustrate the reaction of politicians, school staff and administrators, parents and community members to desegregation by busing.

To watch the growing collection of items that is Northeastern’s contribution to this effort, please visit the University’s Digital Repository.

 

Posted in: Archives and Special Collections, Collections, Serendipity

28
Sep15

Northeastern Welcomes Convenience Store Vending Machine

Posted by: Dylan Sessler

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Gone are the days of running to the corner store in desperation only to find it closed. Gone are the times when you arrive at the library fully prepared for a day of studying only to realize you forgot your phone charger.

This semester, Snell Library has a new addition to the first floor near Argo Tea; a vending machine offering essentials such as highlighters, medicine, and caffeinated gummy bears. This is the first location of the Northeastern-based start-up, The Lobby Shop, which offers a convenient solution for the busy lives of college students and professionals.

Lobbyshop1

Founded by three NU undergrads, The Lobby Shop was born after a chance meeting at IDEA, Northeastern’s venture accelerator. Co-founders Beth Hutchings and Dylan Sessler came to their IDEA orientation with a plan to take college essentials and offer them in a vending machine. Midway through the meeting, freshman Evan LaBelle stood up and pitched an idea eerily similar to their own.  A few days later they were officially partners of The Lobby Shop.

Dylanevan

Supported by IDEA, Maureen Timmons, and their coach Jordan Vallino, the three students developed their product list to incorporate the common necessities in the following categories:

  • OTC medicine
  • electronics accessories
  • hygiene products
  • school supplies
  • everyday essentials

The machine will also feature a rotating selection of fun and useful items that students will be able to vote on.

After receiving contract approval and gap funding this past summer, the trio installed their machine in the back of Argo Tea in Snell Library to offer urgently needed items in a central location on campus. The Lobby Shop team plans to bring their service to residence halls at Northeastern and other universities to provide safe and convenient access to products students need at all hours of the day.

“The reality is that Boston isn’t a 24-hour city” Beth notes, “and most of our lives don’t end when stores close. Especially if we have another winter like last year, we want as many people as possible to have access to things they often need around the clock.”

 

Posted in: Library News and Events, Staff Interests, Tech Alerts

10
Sep15

Welcome Back to Snell: What You Need to Know

Posted by: Tom Petrini

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On behalf of Snell Library, I would like to extend a warm welcome to all new and returning members of the Northeastern community for the start of the Fall 2015 semester. Snell Library offers services and resources for everyone at Northeastern. Click a link below to explore how you can use your library!

We have spent the summer creating new study spaces, enriching our collections, and planning some very special events to celebrate 25 years of Snell Library. To kick-off the semester, we will hold an information table on the library porch through Friday, September 11th. Subject librarians and ITS staff will be there to answer your questions and give out free goodies.

 
The Hub

 

During the week of September 14th, we are hosting a social media-based challenge called #HuskyHideAndSeek as a part of our celebration of Snell’s 25th birthday.

  • 25 3D printed huskies will be hiding all around the building.
  • Follow @ClubSnell on Twitter and Instagram for clues.
  • Find a husky, share on social media, and win!

Winners will:

  • Keep their husky
  • Win a $5 gift card to the 3D Printing Studio
  • Be entered to win a brand new Fujifilm Instamax Mini polaroid camera

The rest of the semester includes a full calendar of great events, from 3D Printing and DMC Studios workshops to Meet the Author and Neighborhood Matters events and a month long celebration of Open Access. Be sure to check our events calendar for the most up-to-date information. Good luck this fall. Snell Library’s resources and staff are here to help make this your best semester yet!

 

Posted in: Library News and Events

8
Sep15

6 Reasons to Love the New Furniture on the Third Floor

Posted by: Tom Petrini

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Quiet floor studiers, rejoice! Thanks to a generous donation from Northeastern parents, the third floor now has 20 new tables, 80 new chairs, and additional outlets. The new furniture features subtle design improvements that make a world of difference for the student experience.

Here’s why we think you will love the new study space:

1. There’s more usable study space

With visits to Snell Library increasing each year, their gift funded the reconfiguration of thousands of square feet — answering the demand for more study space! The new tables and chairs are perfect for quiet study on the third floor.

2. The clean, modern look

The new chairs and frosted partitions give this new study space a clean, modern, aesthetic. And of course, these features aren’t just nice to look at; they are functional, too!

3. These are some comfortable chairs

Yup, that’s a cushion, and it is super comfortable. The chairs are lightweight while offering plenty of plush support.

4. The partitions prevent large groups from forming on the quiet floor

Groups don’t always mean to be noisy… But it happens. The new partitions remind students that the third floor is for individual and quiet “parallel” study, not group gatherings and conversations.

5. The partitions encourage table sharing

Some students like to spread out, (you know who you are) and hey, we understand. It’s nice to see all of your study material at once. However, we also know how it feels when you can’t find space in Club Snell, especially during midterms and finals. The new partitions will prevent single studiers from occupying an entire table during busy periods, leaving more room for their peers!

6. You get more privacy

Though it is small, the partition does create privacy. The person across from you can’t see what you’re working on, and you won’t be distracted by your table-mate’s rainbow of post-its or choice of study snack.

Come try out the new furniture on the third floor! We’d love to hear what you think. Comment here or tweet us @ClubSnell. Enjoy the new study space, and we’ll see you soon!

 

 

Posted in: Library News and Events, Serendipity

24
Aug15

Professor of History Gerry Herman Retires After 50 Years at Northeastern

Posted by: Andrew Begley

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Just try to name a University committee that Gerry Herman hasn’t been involved with over the past half-century. Handbooks and contracts? He reviewed them. Strategic Plans? He helped plan them. Technology and distance learning initiatives? He championed them.

Herman first called Northeastern home as a graduate student in 1965. Since then, he has been on the cutting edge of  incorporating media into the  study and teaching of history. He taught courses on topics ranging from Western and World History to the History of Flight and Space Travel. Herman has given new meaning to the term “University Service,” serving as University Copyright Officer (1988-2012), Special Assistant to the Provost (1979-1987), and Special Assistant to University Counsel (1987-2012) in addition to chairing a host of committees and task forces. Herman has also been integral to the success of Holocaust Remembrance Week, serving on the Holocaust Awareness Committee from 1983-2013. Professor Herman retired from the University on July 1, 2015, but his impact will surely be felt for many years to come.

Herman’s professional papers and records (the Gerald H. Herman Papers) are preserved in the Archives and Special Collections Department in Snell Library.

 

Herman teaching an honors seminar in 1984.

Professor Herman in 1975.

Herman and President Richard Freeland at the inaugural NUTV broadcast, April 1997.


Posted in: Archives and Special Collections, History, Serendipity