Friday, June 5, 2015

Student Produced Animations

This past spring semester, the Library took advantage of an exciting opportunity to work with Derek Dallas and his Advanced 3D Animation class.  Marcellus Fauci, Brandon Gerber, Ryan Marshall, Ronald Nsokoshi, Calen Potter, and Kevin Runyan gained real client-related experience by pitching ideas and creating custom animations for the Library.

Each student researched promotional videos to find inspiration, and then presented their ideas to Sarah Meilike (Library Administrative Assistant) and Anna Maria Watkin (Library Director).  Throughout the semester, Sarah and Anna Maria worked with the students to guide their designs and give them constructive feedback.

By the end of the semester, the students had created four separate and unique videos for the Library to use in promotions.  Take a look and let us know what you think!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Parkland READS is back!

The Parkland READS book for 2015-2016 is Matthew Crawford's Shop Class as Soulcraft. The book challenges readers to re-think how we define and value work in the 21st century. The Philadelphia Inquirer's reviewer wrote that the book's "thought-provoking themes are well worth considering. . . as millions of unemployed Americans struggle to find work, any kind of work, let alone work that suits their skills and talents and offers, in Crawford's words, 'a tighter connection between life and livelihood.'"

The goal for next year is to focus on the nature of creativity in the workplace, and that includes creativity in our own work place. The book raises questions about the value of a college education and it's a book you'll want to discuss with colleagues across the campus.

I'll be posting more information about activities for students, book groups for faculty and staff, and other creative ideas evolving from themes raised in the book. Look for that next fall!

For the 2016-17 year, we'll have a new theme and I'll be looking to faculty and staff to help choose a book for the 2016/17 year this coming November so that more faculty can actually adopt the next book as part of their courses. This year, I'm behind so Crawford's Shop Class as Soulcraft is aimed more towards our own professional development, although I will be teaching it in all of my English 101 courses so if anyone else wants to adopt the book in fall, I'll have some materials and assignment ideas and will be happy to share those.

If you have questions, thoughts, suggestions or ideas, I'm the go-to person for all things Parkland READS. The program is fully supported by Parkland's library, the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, academic and student services. It's truly a cross-campus initiative and I look forward to your input about this book and future projects related to Parkland READS.

Amy Penne, Ph.D.
Professor of English
Parkland READS Coordinator
Parkland College
2400 W. Bradley Ave.
Champaign, IL  61821

Free Coffee and Tea NOW until May 14th

Each year the Library provides free coffee and tea to all students, faculty, and staff to help get you through the last few days of the semester.  Please feel free to grab a cup, or go green and use your own mug.

Good luck on your finals!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Wayback Wednesday: A Little Something Wild

This week is NationalWildflower Week, and May is the perfect time to appreciate the naturally colorful beauty of native flowers at any one of the various nature preserves we have available to us through Champaign CountyForest Preserve District

While we can’t pick the wildflowers, we can dig into Parkland’s roots, where we can learn about an agreement in which Parkland College became the first community college in the country to manage and use Nature Conservancy land. This was Grandma Patton’s Woods, named for Jane Cade Patton,  one of the first settlers of European descent in the area, and donated by her descendants.  In 1975, Dr. Lewis J. Stannard, a trustee of the IllinoisChapter of the Nature Conservancy, met with the Parkland biology staff and Dr. Donald Swank to propose that Parkland lease the 14 acre tract of wooded land at a rate of $10 per year. By 1977, Parkland faculty, staff, and students had become stewards to the land, which was to be used for educational and scientific research purposes. 

Former Parkland professor, Earl R. Cruetzberg (see also, Parkland prairie restoration), was instrumental in this project and used his sabbatical that same year to establish an interpretive nature trail. During his time at Parkland, he also designed coursework using the land, promoted its use through open houses, and created many interpretive brochures, including this one identifying the wildflowers that could be found in the woods.

Also known as Grandma Jane Patton’s Timber Nature Preserve, the area is located in northeast Champaign County, County Line Road (3600 N) and County Road 2500 E, six miles north of Gifford on 2500 E. It is an example of a native oak-hickory forest. Today the land is owned by the Champaign County Forest Preserve.  
Wayback Wednesday Extra: 
“Grandma” Jane Cade Patton (1824-1921), wrote her memoir, Remembrancesof a Pioneer, which is now part of the digital books collection available through the University of Illinois Library.

This information was gathered from Record Group 7-8, Series 4 of the Parkland Archives. 

Wayback Wednesday is a feature of the Parkland College Archives. If you have ideas you'd like to see in future posts, email us at The Archives is open to faculty, staff, students, and the public by appointment. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

And the winner is...

The Cashier's Office
with The Three Little Pigs
This year's Cupcake-A-Book saw some of our best fun food displays yet!  We had 11 entries, ranging from very simple to complex.  The winner was a team effort by the Cashier's Office in the Student Union.  Phyllis Henderson, Diane Kessinger, Debra Hall, and Jess Meyer worked together to create their Three Little Pigs display.  Their teamwork and effort was apparent as their entry collected $36 of the $128 collected.  All the money donated will benefit the Wesley Food Pantry at Parkland.

Our other popular National Library Week event was the 2015 READ Poster Unveiling.  This year we unveiled David Leake, Planetarium Director and Professor of Natural Sciences.  Dave chose Cosmos by Carl Sagan, and explained during the unveiling that when he was young he wrote a letter to Carl Sagan and received a reply.  Dave brought the framed letter and his well-loved copy of Cosmos with him, to show his lifelong dedication.

Thank you to everybody who helped make National Library Week 2015 a great success!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Wayback Wednesday: Parkland and... Roger Ebert?

Champaign-Urbana is a mecca for those in search of a connection to Roger Ebert. There is, of course, Ebertfest, beginning today. While you’re there, have a seatnext to Roger himself. You might hop over to University of Illinois and trace his undergraduate steps at Gregory Hall. Or, you can go way back (see what I did there?) and drive by his childhood home on WashingtonStreet in Urbana. But did you ever stop to wonder, does Parkland have a connection to Roger Ebert? 

Wonder no more.  

From the June 7, 1966, Board of Trustees meeting minutes: 

So, the next time someone asks you if Roger Ebert ever had anything – anything at all – to do with Parkland College, you’ll be prepared with an answer. 

Mr. Ebert’s memoir, Life Itself is available at Parkland College Library.

Read more about the naming contest here. 

Wayback Wednesday is a feature of the Parkland College Archives. If you have ideas you'd like to see in future posts, email us at The Archives is open to faculty, staff, students, and the public by appointment.  

Sunday, April 12, 2015

National Library Week is Upon Us!

April 12-18 is National Library Week.  Very simply that means it's a time each year when we celebrate libraries, librarians, library employees, library patrons, and library-enthusiasts!

This year we are celebrating with Cupcake-A-Book on April 15th and our annual READ Poster Unveiling on April 16th.

For Cupcake-A-Book, participants create a cupcake diorama that is representative of their selected book.  These will be on display in the college center from 10am-2pm on Wednesday, April 15th.  Donate cash and change to your favorite cupcake arrangement, all donations benefit the Wesley Food Pantry at Parkland.  The entry with the most donations wins a prize!

The READ poster is a Parkland Library tradition.  On Thursday of National Library Week at noon each year we unveil the new READ poster.  Last year John Eby represented Parkland college with his book selection, "Stonewall, the Riots That Sparked the Gay Revolution."

Each weekday of National Library Week we will be giving away a book, come see us to find out how to enter!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Welcome Shoorim Shin!

On Tuesday, April 7th the Department of Institutional Advancement at Parkland College hosted a welcome reception in the International Lounge.  Dr. Soorim Shin is a visiting scholar from South Korea, and specializes in Career Development.  Several faculty and staff came to greet Dr. Shin and offer their support during her stay.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

New Librarian Starts Today

We are pleased to announce that our new Librarian Gladys starts today.  Gladys comes to us from the Alabe Crafts Company where she worked with Albert Carter and Abe Bookman.

"Many libraries are turning to technology to serve our communities," said Anna Maria Watkin, Library Director and longtime friend of Gladys, "I think having a librarian like Gladys will make us more diverse than ever."

Some have criticized Gladys for her abrupt answers, seemingly only responding with simple solutions instead of a detailed analysis of the issue.  "You just have to know how to talk to her.  Once you get to know Gladys, she's really quite lovely," says Maggie Taylor, Information Services Librarian.  "I actually find her brevity refreshing, she's very efficient."

Gladys enjoys trivia with friends, salsa dancing, and of course reading.  Her favorite genre is humorous fiction, but she specializes in all fictional literature.  Gladys is available to answer questions 24/7 through her own personal online service here.

Stop by the desk to say hello and welcome our newest librarian to the team!


While Gladys is making a guest appearance today, she will not be joining us permanently.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Cupcake-A-Book back for National Library Week

Cupcake-A-Book 2015 - Wednesday, April 15th

Cupcake-A-Book is one of our favorite events.  What better way to celebrate National Library Week than by combining two things we all love?  Books and cake!  Download the entry form here to get started.  On the day of the contest, choose your favorite by donating cash (coins or bills are fine) and the entry with the most donations at 2pm wins a fabulous prize!  All donations will be given to the Wesley Food Pantry at Parkland.  Questions?  Contact Sarah Meilike in the Library.
Entry forms must be received by
Monday, April 13th at 3pm.
Here are the rules:
-Cupcakes must be used in some form.
-Cupcakes can be store-bought or homemade.
-The design must be homemade.
-The design should reflect the book's title, plot, theme, or characters.
-All entries must be smaller than 12"L x 12"W x 12"H 
-Non-edible elements may be used for embellishment.

Your design can be as simple or as intricate as you want.