In January 2021, Erinn Aspinall was named interim Director of the Health Sciences Libraries. In this Q&A, Aspinall discusses the opportunities and challenges in front of her and her work on the Libraries Strategic Planning Team. Prior to becoming interim Director, she served as HSL’s Associate Director for Program Development and Strategy. Aspinall’s career reflects a commitment to the health sciences, with previous positions at the University of Michigan, the National Institutes of Health, and the University of New Mexico.
Three librarians joined together to develop the research guide "Conducting research through an anti-racism lens," which has just been published on the Libraries website.
Alexa Oswald came to the Health Sciences Library through serendipity — she saw a summer job listed and had enough hours to take it — and has been working there ever since. After she graduates in chemistry, she plans to enter a master’s degree program in nursing and, ultimately, become a nurse-midwife.
Coping with COVID was the challenge of the year. COVID closed our buildings during spring semester. Dealing with it by working from home forced us to find new ways to do things. And our new circumstances fostered an appreciation for an application with a zany name — Zoom. (For some, it’s more a love-hate relationship.) From student workers to the Dean of Libraries, everyone felt the impact of changes as they tried to stay healthy and to adapt. Here are some of their stories.
The Libraries' Policy & News Media Impact Service recently helped researchers in the Medical School understand the impact of its Coventor ventilator. “I had no idea that the Libraries could do that," said one researcher. Yes, it can.
The students in Sally Kohlstedt’s honors course this fall, “Campus Obscura: Cabinets of Curiosity at UMN,” are visiting several U collections and museums as they explore the reasons for why they are an intimate part of the U. And at one site, they felt the experience was close to hands-on.
One of the reasons people advocate for open access publishing is the idea that the article will receive more citations — and thus the author will be able to show a greater scholarly impact. Three University of Minnesota librarians decided to investigate whether the evidence supported this idea. They ended up winning a Medical Library Association Award for their work.
Learn more about the vision for the Health Sciences Library, located in the new Health Sciences Education Center from Library Director, Janice Jaguszewski, which was built upon one key question: “How can we bring together librarian expertise, digital content, flexible spaces, and new technology to advance teaching and learning and really help prepare our students to become the next generation of health care providers?”
Del Reed’s first job in the Libraries was a two-week stint moving furniture. About 40 years later, he recently retired from the Health Sciences Library as liaison to the Center for Bioethics, the Medical Division of Physical Therapy, and the Center for Allied Health. He says: “I don’t have any regrets about the career that chose me.”
By supporting campus researchers and by doing their own research, U of M librarians carry out key roles on campus and in their profession.
The Data + Visualization Lab is one of the new services offered through the new Health Sciences Library. Shanda Hunt, Public Health Liaison and Data Curation Specialist, says it fits well with other libraries activities. To better promote its use, Hunt is offering workshops and an online guide to help users get started.
When COVID-19 was starting to spread earlier this year, fourth-year medical student Elle Newcome asked herself how she could be helpful outside of the clinical space. Since she had been sewing since she was young and had a personal design business, "I saw my piece fit in the puzzle,” she says, deciding to make cloth face masks. But she also decided to do research on the efficacy of cloth masks worn by healthy individuals in a community setting.
Research Services Liaison Caitlin Bakker recently won an Affiliated Teaching Award from the University of Minnesota Medical School for her work last year with the Family Medicine Collaborative Scholars Intensive Course.
Health Sciences Library’s move into the state-of-the-art Health Sciences Education Center supports interdisciplinary education across the health sciences. “This is really a new set of services and a new set of expertise we’re getting ready to share with the University,” says the library's Emerging Technology Strategist Jonathan Koffel. He wants to get the word out about how tools like virtual reality can influence physicians’ practice and training, data visualization can help public health practitioners to tell their stories, and how the Makerspace can support innovation among health providers.
The staff of the Wangensteen Historical Library of Biology and Medicine are back in the kitchen to try their hands at making cheesecakes from 1540! This time - taste testing support comes from the Lisa’s of the Libraries - including our new Dean of Libraries, Lisa German.
In this student reporter post, history major Kaylee Morlan shares why she loves working at the Wangensteen Historical Library while taking classes that feature the library’s collection, and how she uses her ever-growing knowledge of the collection to help her fellow classmates contextualize course concepts.