University of Houston Libraries is pleased to announce the first-ever virtual Poetry & Prose reading, featuring new graduate students of the UH Creative Writing Program. The reading starts at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 30 on Zoom and is free to attend. Register
Nick Almeida earned his MFA from The Michener Center for Writers where he was Editor-in-Chief of Bat City Review. His fiction has appeared in American Literary Review, Mid-American Review, Waxwing, Southeast Review, and elsewhere.
Pritha Bhattacharyya (PhD, Fiction) is a Bengali-American writer and first-year fiction PhD student at the University of Houston. She completed her MFA at Boston University, and she was a Fall 2019 Leslie Epstein Global Fellow in Osaka, Japan.
Ryan Bollenbach is a writer living in Houston, Texas. He formerly served as poetry editor for Black Warrior Review in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He reads for SweetLit: A Literary Confection and Heavy Feather Review. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Colorado Review, poets.org, Painted Bride Quarterly, Snail Trail Press and elsewhere. Find his tweets @SilentAsIAm, more writing @ whatgreatlarks.tumblr.com
Addie Eliades, a new UH MFA candidate in poetry, was a 2019 Fulbright Fellow in Brazil. She received the University of Virginia’s 2017 Rachel St. Paul Poetry Prize. Her writing has appeared in Bitter Melon Magazine, Rumble Fish Quarterly, and other publications.
Tayyba Maya Kanwal is a Pakistani-American writer who grew up in the United Arab Emirates. Her work appears in Juxtaprose, Quarterly West and other journals. Her nonfiction has been anthologized by The Doctor TJ Eckleburg Review and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. Her awards include the Inprint C. Glenn Cambor Fellowship. She is a candidate for an MFA at the Creative Writing Program at the University of Houston.
Erin L. McCoy holds an MFA in creative writing and an MA in Hispanic studies from the University of Washington. She won second place in the 2019–2020 Rougarou Poetry Contest, judged by CAConrad, and her poem, “Futures,” was selected by Natalie Diaz for inclusion in Best New Poets 2017. Her poetry and fiction have been published or are forthcoming in Bennington Review, Pleiades, DIAGRAM, Nimrod International Journal, Conjunctions, and other publications.
Fey Popoola is an activist and writer. She has a degree in Linguistics and Cognitive Science from Princeton University and is now a first year poetry MFA student here at UH.
Joy Priest is the author of HORSEPOWER (Pitt Poetry Series, 2020), winner of the Donald Hall Prize for Poetry. She is the recipient of the 2020 Stanley Kunitz Prize and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day, APR, The Atlantic, Poetry Northwest, and Poets & Writers, among others. She is currently a doctoral student in Literature & Creative Writing at the University of Houston.
Stephanie Pushaw‘s short fiction appears in Narrative, Joyland, and the Masters Review Anthology. She has also published essays in Mississippi Review, DIAGRAM, and Los Angeles Review of Books. She was a Truman Capote Fellow at the University of Montana, where she received an MFA in Fiction, and has worked as assistant essays and interviews editor at The Believer. Originally from Los Angeles, Stephanie currently lives in New Orleans.
Adele Elise Williams is a poet from Louisiana. She is a winner of the Emily Morrison Poetry Prize and has received support from Hindman Settlement School, Muse Writing Center and Inprint of Houston. Adele’s work can be found or is forthcoming in Split Lip Magazine, The Adroit Journal, Quarterly West, SAND, and more.
University of Houston Libraries welcomes Leo Martin as the new resource description librarian.
Please describe your role at UH Libraries and talk about some of your professional goals.
I’m very excited to be joining UH Libraries as their new resource description librarian. I primarily create catalog records for music scores, sound recordings, and special collections materials. I am also researching recent trends in popular music, including established and emerging microgenres like chopped and screwed music and vaporwave music.
Please share a bit about your background and interests. How do these inspire and shape your approach as a librarian?
Collaboration underpins all of the work I do, and is foundational in my approach to librarianship. I’m an educator first and foremost, and I try to center my approach to cataloging resources on discovery and accessibility. My first job in a library was actually as a student assistant at the UH Music Library over in the Moores School of Music building! After a stint in the Marines I knocked out my B.S. in Music Education and M.S in Library Science with a focus in music librarianship at the University of North Texas. I’ve also gigged and taught bassoon and oboe lessons over the years, and was previously the catalog librarian for the New England Conservatory of Music.
What is your first impression of the University?
I had the opportunity to visit campus in mid-February before COVID-19 and thoroughly enjoyed my time interacting with the UH community. It’s also a very good sign when students are in the library using resources and interacting regularly with the staff there. To also see how UH has navigated the uncertainty brought by the pandemic and both hire and onboard me is nothing short of impressive.
What is your favorite hobby/cuisine/book/movie?
I dabble in making zines (shorthand for “do-it-yourself” magazines) and have been recently working through my backlog of video games, TV series and books. I’ve recently read Questlove’s book “Creative Quest,” and have been chipping away at “Fire Emblem: Three Houses” on the Nintendo Switch.
University of Houston Libraries is pleased to announce the establishment of a new endowment to support the LGBT History Research Collection.
The Hollyfield Foundation Endowment will provide funding for the acquisition and preservation of primary source materials in the LGBT History Research Collection, one of 13 collecting areas in UH Libraries Special Collections. The collection preserves and promotes the archives of LGBT communities and organizations from Houston and the region. Materials, including personal papers, organization records, and library collections, document the communities’ activist, cultural, social, and political activities, and the personal experiences of community members.
Through its support of LGBT and AIDS non-profits, the Hollyfield Foundation has made a substantial positive impact on local LGBT communities since its inception in 1994. The Houston-based organization contributes to charities that work to prevent discrimination, promote equality, and assist in HIV/AIDS education, care and treatment.
“Jay Hollyfield deeply loved Houston and our LGBT community and history,” said Elizabeth McLane, Hollyfield Foundation board president. “The Hollyfield Foundation Board of Directors is thrilled that his name will now be linked perpetually to one of the nation’s most extensive and exceptional LGBT history collections.”
In recognition of this grant, UH Libraries will establish an annual exhibition of materials from the LGBT History Research Collection, to be held at MD Anderson Library during June each year as part of Pride Month.
Marilyn Myers, interim dean of UH Libraries, said the endowment supports the Libraries’ mission to preserve and provide access to unique primary sources for teaching, learning, research, and scholarship. “This endowment will allow UH Libraries to expand the LGBT History Research Collection and increase engagement with students and scholars,” Myers said. “With this gift, we’ll be able to make accessible a rich collection of primary source materials to those seeking an understanding of the history and legacy of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender communities.”
Engineering librarian Edward Gloor will host open hours for UH engineering students each Thursday of the fall 2020 semester. Beginning September 17, 1 – 2 pm, engineering students are encouraged to access the Microsoft Teams space (log in with Cougarnet credentials). Gloor will be available to help you start your research, find sources, and organize your research.
University of Houston Libraries hosted a series of online training sessions on open educational resources (OER) for UH faculty and instructors. Topics included open licensing, finding and evaluating OER, and modifying and creating OER.
The series was recorded and each session is available below via Microsoft Stream:
OER and Creative Commons Licenses
This session provides an in-depth explanation of Creative Commons licenses, the open licenses that are commonly applied to OER. Attend this session to gain an understanding of Creative Commons licenses as a user or creator of OER.
Finding and Evaluating OER
This session provides strategies for finding and evaluating OER. Attend this session for an overview of recommended OER repositories, strategies for managing the evaluation process, and to share tips and tricks for finding and evaluating OER.
Modifying and Creating OER
This session provides guidance for modifying and creating OER. Attend this session for an overview of topics such as open licensing, technical format, accessibility, and additional resources to support modification and creation of OER.
Follow the Open Educational Resources Microsoft Stream Channel for future OER events. Additionally, those interested in open educational resources can consult the OER and Alternative Textbook Handbook. For more information, contact Ariana Santiago, open educational resources coordinator.
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Thanks to a Texas State Library and Archives Commission TexTreasures grant funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), over 100 reels of microfilmed archives documenting women and underrepresented communities in Texas visual arts will be digitized and made accessible online.
The Texas Art Project is an extensive collection of visual arts history preserved at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) library. Between 1978 and 1985, MFAH contacted artists, galleries, and arts organizations across Texas to document unique manuscript papers and research materials on microfilm, as part of the Smithsonian Institution Archives of American Art (AAA). The project yielded nearly 700 reels, a subset of which featured materials from women artists, artists of color, and galleries that hosted them. This subset is the focus of the TexTreasures grant which allowed University of Houston Libraries Special Collections and MFAH to collaborate on the digitization of approximately 150,000 images, previously available only in a limited, localized capacity in microfilm at MFAH. Digitized images of materials such as correspondence, exhibition catalogs, reviews, and publications will become openly available online with multiple points of access, thereby facilitating scholarship and research using unique primary sources.
“When these materials were gathered on microfilm at the MFAH as part of the AAA, it was a tremendous gift as far as preservation,” said Marie Wise, managing archivist at MFAH. “We are so fortunate that these rich materials were preserved as they were. In digitizing them and creating searchable metadata, we are now making them accessible to a far broader audience. In this way, scholars and students can uncover this amazing history.”
Contributions from women artists and artists of color are underrepresented in scholarship and public awareness, making this project particularly relevant in today’s social climate. “The goal of the digitization project is to provide a resource for scholars, students, and teachers to be able to engage with the lives and work of these artists,” said Christian Kelleher, head of UH Special Collections. “We want to boost awareness and appreciation for that work. We want to see that students are educated on archival research and critical inquiry, and that scholars are able to produce new knowledge based on unique primary sources preserved here.”
Wise noted that the project is about expanding accessibility through institutional partnerships. “By working together, we can make the collective art history resources in Houston and in Texas more discoverable,” Wise said. “The stories that are held in our respective archives are interwoven, and we all want the fullest historical picture possible preserved and studied. The MFAH is very glad to be a partner in this project.”
An important part of the project involves the support of student success. Two graduate students in arts-related fields were hired to assist in indexing and cataloging the collection, research each artist, and contact each artist.
Lysette Portano, a professional contemporary dancer and one of the project’s graduate assistants, is enrolled in the MA in Arts Leadership program in the Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts at UH. “As an interpreter, I have always been curious about artists’ creative processes,” Portano said. “This drive has led me to research and experience different art forms. I became interested in this project because it uncovers artists that reshaped the Texas art scene and preserves the legacies of their contributions to the arts.”
Carolann Madden, a PhD candidate in literature and creative writing at UH, was drawn to the project for similar research interests in folklore and ethnography. “It’s important for us to understand “archives” as places, both physical and digital, where we can find a wide array of material,” Madden said. “The material on the reels is incredibly valuable and exciting, and should be shared. While this project was proposed and started before the pandemic, watching our archives and libraries close around the world served as a meaningful reminder that digitization not only helps preserve material in our archives, but also offers access to it wherever we are.”
TexTreasures is a yearly competitive grant program of TexShare, a consortium of Texas libraries joining together to share print and electronic materials, purchase online resources, and combine staff expertise. TexShare is administered by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC).
The TexTreasures awards are made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to TSLAC under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act. The mission of IMLS is to advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development.
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Anne Washington, coordinator of metadata services at University of Houston Libraries, has been chosen as the 2020 recipient of the Texas Digital Library Individual Impact Award. The award honors an individual who has made significant contributions and improvements related to the field of digital curation or digital scholarship.
In her letter of nomination for the award, Annie Wu, head of Metadata and Digitization Services, stated that “Anne Washington has shown excellence in promoting common and best practices across the profession, advancing community open source initiatives and fostering research in the digital and metadata field.” Washington’s many accomplishments include a demonstration of outstanding leadership and collaboration via service in library organizations at the national and regional levels; significant contributions to innovative projects at both the national and institutional levels; and a record of scholarship in digital, metadata and linked data initiatives presented at high-profile national and international venues. She has served as the co-chair for the ALCTS/LITA Linked Library Data Interest Group, vice-chair/chair-elect of the ALCTS Metadata Interest Group, and Programming co-chair for the ALCTS Metadata Interest Group; the chair of South Central States Fedora Users Group; member of the Bridge2Hyku project team, which was awarded a $250,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to develop a migration toolkit to assist institutions in adopting the open-source Hyku digital repository; and member of the Bayou City DAMS (BCDAMS) implementation project, helping the team to establish the UH Libraries’ next-generation digital system’s infrastructure.
Washington has authored and contributed to numerous peer-reviewed articles published in journals such as ALCTS Library Resources & Technical Services, Journal of Library Metadata, and Code4Lib. Her co-authored monograph, Linked Data for the Perplexed Librarian, was recently published in March 2020.
In her role at UH Libraries, Washington is responsible for managing metadata creation and maintenance for the University of Houston Digital Library. She is currently a Product Owner for the development, implementation, and migration to a new digital asset management (DAM) ecosystem for UH Libraries’ rare and unique digital content. She is also involved in initiatives to expand the Libraries’ services to researchers including consulting with students and faculty on how to use metadata for their projects and research data. Her research interests include emerging technologies, such as linked data, that have the potential to more broadly expose and connect resources as well as inclusive, user-centered approaches to metadata.
TDL presented the awards at an online ceremony this month.
University of Houston Libraries honored outstanding librarians and staff at an online awards ceremony this week. Interim dean of Libraries Marilyn Myers commended not only this year’s award recipients but all Libraries staff for being adaptable and thriving in this period of great challenge to health and safety.
The Dean’s Library Advocate Award was presented to Joujou Zebdaoui, director of minor planned projects in UH Facilities Planning and Construction. This award recognizes an employee who has worked closely with the Libraries during the past year, and who has made a significant contribution to the success of the Libraries. Zebdaoui facilitated multiple long-term construction projects for the Libraries. She praised the great work of her team in her acceptance of the award.
The Student Achievement Award recipients are Corey Sherrard and Jess Spiehler. Sherrard is creative, dependable, and brings passion to work every day. Over the past three years, Sherrard has grown into the role of lead producer in the Hamill Foundation Multimedia Studio and assists with the training of incoming studio technicians. Spiehler is a natural leader who is a driving force behind one of UH Libraries’ efforts to support research productivity and make that research globally available. Spiehler collaborates with colleagues to develop and streamline workflows, and routinely organizes new projects.
The McGovern Outstanding Student Awards went to Alys Garcia Carrera and Marus Jenkins, who work in tandem to push forward UH Libraries’ efforts to become a national leader in LGBT library collections. They work effectively with both Special Collections curators and community partners to preserve, catalog, and engage students with UH LGBT collections, and have made monumental efforts at organizing thousands of issues of local, regional, and national publications.
The McGovern Staff Rookie of the Year is Stefanie Florencio, an incredibly fast learner who has acclimated quickly and become both an integral member of the team and an important asset to the Libraries. She has fostered very good relationships with administrators and staff across campus and throughout the Libraries, and is able to juggle multiple responsibilities with discretion, diplomacy, sound judgment, and efficiency.
Reid Boehm is the Librarian Rookie of the year. She has developed relationships with colleagues across campus and in the Libraries, establishing herself as an effective collaborator, and contributing insight and knowledge to several ongoing projects. Boehm made immediate contributions to the Libraries’ research services initiatives, and is building a research data management program to strategically address identified needs and support existing research productivity efforts.
The second Librarian Rookie of the Year is Ian Knabe, who demonstrates high integrity, creativity, and strong librarianship on a daily basis. Knabe has strong knowledge of electronic resources, contract management, and vendor relations, and his problem-solving acumen has been in constant use as the Libraries worked through many challenges related to the system migration to Alma in the past year.
This year’s Outstanding Group is Research Materials Procurement. The members of this department have worked actively with the Alma migration, including new monographic processes with Metadata and Digitization Services, and with Information and Access Services on circulation workflows during the transition.
Ariana Santiago is this year’s Trailblazer Award recipient. Santiago took on the challenge of coming into a new, high-stakes position as open educational resources coordinator, one that required creative thinking, innovation, flexibility, and strong leadership skills. She has moved forward the Libraries’ strategic plan goal of being a leader in student success by making educational resources more affordable for students, particularly through the Alternative Textbook Incentive Program (ATIP).
The inaugural recipient of the Dean Dana C. Rooks and Dr. Charles W. Rooks Diversity Award is Andrea Malone, a voice for all employees related to diversity and inclusion. Malone played a key role in developing the Libraries’ Plan for Advancing Diversity and Inclusion and served as the first chair of the Libraries’ Committee on Diversity and Inclusion (CODI), working tirelessly for three years to get the committee launched and moving in the right direction, in support of broad equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts.
Chris Galloway is the winner of the Staff Achievement award. Galloway is known as a great resource and a great person who continually goes the extra mile, and then goes even further to make things better. During the Alma migration, Galloway quickly learned the software and became a point of contact because of his strength in using the software. He took on learning Alma modules, administrative tools, and analytics even though it was not required; he did it because it helped others and the library to adapt during the migration.
Edith Villasenor Cruz is the next Staff Achievement recipient. She is known for making the Libraries a joyful place to work for both colleagues and patrons while developing programs that engender student success. She oversees a robust schedule of pop-up libraries and has implemented many other innovative programs this year, including establishing a collection of circulating non-consumable art supplies and creating many student outreach events that remind students that the library is a space for inspiration and delight as well as research.
This year’s Outstanding Staff Award recipient is Yesenia Umana. She is not only extremely effective at her job, but is also a true pleasure to be around. Umana is an ideal colleague, always dependable, patient, helpful, and generous with her time, and has quickly become the go-to person for all things finance. She was also an active participant in the Alma migration, and played an integral role in not one but two departments.
Veronica Arellano Douglas is the recipient of the Librarian Achievement Award. She enjoys a reputation as a rigorous scholar, passionate educator, and advocate for centering labor and care in library practice. Douglas has an active, robust, and highly regarded research agenda, having authored numerous journal articles, book chapters, and presentations on topics such as relational-cultural theory in librarianship, the gendered divide of labor in libraries, and the emotional labor performed by instruction librarians. She has also made significant contributions to the profession at the national level, and was recently selected to be a member of the 2020-21 cohort of the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Leadership and Career Development Program.
The next recipient of the Librarian Achievement Award is Wenli Gao, known for being an effective collaborator and strong leader, one who has gone above and beyond her core responsibilities to build a data services program from the ground up. Gao has a strong body of scholarship, having published seven journal articles in the last two years and actively presenting at conferences both local and national. Gao was elected vice-president/president-elect of the Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA) and received the CALA President’s Recognition Award for her exceptional work and leadership chairing several CALA committees.
This year’s McGovern Outstanding Librarian recipient is Kerry Creelman. She has been a leader at UH Libraries for more than ten years, and is known for her strong voice, strategic thinking, and collaborations with departments and librarians throughout the library. A long-standing faculty senator, Creelman has raised the visibility of UH Libraries to faculty, served as chair of the Undergraduate Subcommittee, and has twice been elected to the Faculty Governance Committee. Creelman also has a strong record of service in the profession going back many years, including a prestigious appointment as chair of the University Libraries Section of Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), and current appointment to the ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award Committee.
The 2020 Library Excellence Awards committee members are Emily Deal, J Fisher, Ian Knabe, Tim McGittigan, Alex Simons, Shawn Vaillancourt, and Christin Zepeda.