Friday, February 27, 2009

Fall Conference Topics: Semifinalists

Our top six potential Fall Conference topics are (drumroll, please):

- Online Reference Question Protocol

- The Library as Third Place: Increasing Your Library's Value to Your Community

- Camtasia for Digital Tutorials

- Genealogy in the Public Library

- Volunteer Retention

- One Book For Nebraska Kids or One Book For Nebraska Teens


The Para Section can't really afford to sponsor six sessions, so from this list, we will submit formal proposals on the first four that we are able to find suitable presenters for. But topics that don't get submitted this year may resurface next year, so you may get another chance.

We are sure about Camtasia for Digital Tutorials (exact title subject to change), though, as Greg Sunderman, Instructional Designer at Northeast Community College, has already stepped up to the plate. I've worked with Greg back when he was at Criss Library, and I've seen him present on other topics, and I can assure you, he is fantastic. This will be a great session.

I'll post again when we have other confirmed presenters.

And a big thank you to everyone who provided input. I actually received more e-mails than I did blog comments, and that was fine. I'm grateful to you all for participating.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Fall Conference Topics: Last Call for Votes and Speakers

The Paraprofessional Section is narrowing down our choices for fall conference session topics. Topics with the least support have been dropped from the running.

This is your last chance to voice your support for a topic. If you haven't voted before, now is good time to try to bump your favorite topic from the second tier into the top tier, or to ensure that your favorite topic stays in the top tier. And keep in mind that even a top-tier topic might end up being tabled for this year if we can't find a speaker.

In our top tier, the topics that have received the most support are:

• Online Reference Question Protocol
• Volunteer Retention
• Genealogy in the Public Library
• The Library as Third Place: Increasing Your Library's Value to Your Community.


In our second tier, we have:

• Camtasia for Digital Tutorials
• Dressing for the Job/Dress for Success
• One Book For Nebraska Kids or One Book For Nebraska Teens
• Evaluating Videos
• OCLC: Friend or Foe?
• Weeding the Collection
• ALA Code of Ethics


Of these, Camtasia for Digital Tutorials is most likely to make the final cut because we have a confirmed, willing speaker: Greg Sunderman, Instructional Designer at Northeast Community College.

We don't have potential speakers for any of the others yet. If you know of anyone (including yourself) who has both expertise and willingness to present one of these topics at conference, please contact us.

This is your last chance to provide input. Please post your comments or e-mail me within one week, by Thursday, Feb. 26. After that, the Paras will finalize the sessions and speakers that we will submit to NLA.

Thank you for all of your support!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Many Conference Session Ideas

We've gotten quite a few suggestions so far, both on and off the blog. While we are certainly willing to accept more, we're also going to need to start narrowing things down. So please post comments in support of the sessions you would be most interested in attending, so we can get a good idea of what's in demand.

In addition to popular support, to make the final cut a session needs a speaker. If everyone voices their support of a session idea, but we can't find anyone to present it, we won't be able to send it forth as a proposal. So if you look over our list and see a topic that you or someone you know might be willing and able to present, please contact us.

Here are the fourteen ideas we've received to date, with the number of votes each has received. (Suggesting an idea automatically counts as the first vote toward it. We figure, you wouldn't suggest it if you weren't interested in attending it.)

• Camtasia for Digital Tutorials (2 votes)
• Dressing for the Job/Dress for Success (2 votes)
• The Library as Third Place: Increasing Your Library's Value to Your Community (2 votes)
• Online Reference Question Protocol (2 votes)
• One Book For Nebraska Kids or One Book For Nebraska Teens (2 votes)
• Volunteer Retention (2 votes)
• Evaluating Videos (collection development, selecting vendors, etc.) (1 vote)
• OCLC: Friend or Foe? (preferably a panel discussion) (1 vote)
• Desktop Author (ebook-making software) (1 vote)
• ALA Code of Ethics (1 vote)
• How to Use Memberclicks (1 vote)
• So Why Get a Degree? (Is an MLS right for you?) (1 vote)
• Weeding the Collection (1 vote)
• Genealogy in the Public Library (1 vote)

By early-mid March, we'd like to be contacting potential speakers for our most preferred topics. So please speak up for topics you'd like to see become reality, and please help us find willing speakers.

Thank you for all of your great ideas and support.