Thursday, December 21, 2006

Claims put urgency into merger talks

As lawmakers review a bid to restructure Rutgers and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, some higher-education leaders on Tuesday counseled caution while others called for an immediate and dramatic overhaul.

Calling UMDNJ "a sinking ship," the CEO of the New Jersey Council of Teaching Hospitals urged lawmakers to put the beleaguered institution's operations under the control of Rutgers and Seton Hall universities.

Click here to read the entire story at courierpost

Friday, December 15, 2006

The Media Age: Brought to You by the US Census Bureau.

InformationWeek, Friday, 12.15.06 - Almost half our lives are spent watching television, listening to the radio and surfing the Web. At least that's how the latest Statistical Abstract has quantified our media hungry society. Yet books still rank high on the consumer scale. According to the Census Bureau, "the book will still interest many U.S. consumers, who will spend $55.5 billion on 3.17 billion books in 2007."

Another wonderful article on our lives by the numbers appears in today's New York Times.

Winter reading

While the weather has not been particularly frightful (at least here in New Jersey), I am certain we will have a few days in the months ahead when the weather is too nasty to venture outdoors. What better time then, to catch up on some reading? Of course, it would be great to snuggle up with a bestseller. Alas my fellow librarians, we also need to feed, nourish and improve our professional lives.

Because of your busy schedules, you may have missed the July 2006 article by Dane Wood (Assoc. Dean for Public Services, Milner Library, Illinois State University) titled Revisioning Information Literacy for Lifelong Meaning. According to Wood, “information literacy includes information processes that explicitly address meaning, motivation and quality of life. A more robust notion of the concept delivers significant opportunities for libraries and instructional programs.”

Wood gives voice to many of the concerns librarians have expressed about information literacy. Search out a copy of this six-page article. Some of it will reinforce what many of you may already know and feel, and some of it will challenge your thinking, which is of course, a good thing.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

When Should Information Not Be Free?

Dan Gainor, writing for the Business and Media Institute, provides some thoughtful and provocative commentary on the Federal Research Public Access Act. The proposal, sponsored by U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.), would mandate “free online public access to such final peer-reviewed manuscripts or published versions as soon as practicable, but not later than 6 months after publication in peer-reviewed journals.” According to Gainor, this Act, if passed, would have far-reaching and perhaps unintended consequences.

Click here to read the entire article.

College library finds papers signed by Washington, Jefferson

This is not the first time I have read a story like this. Perhaps we librarians should poke our noses into a few of the forgotten corners of our libraries.

An employee at southeastern Ohio's Marietta College has made a stunning discovery, just by looking deep into a file drawer. In a library file cabinet marked "Unidentified Deeds," Linda Showalter found two land deeds signed in 1792 by President George Washington and his secretary of state, Thomas Jefferson.

Click here to read the entire story (

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Qualls Named NJ Prof of the Year

Barry Qualls, literature professor and vice president for undergraduate education, Rutgers, New Brunswick was recently named NJ Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).

“Dr. Qualls is the single best citizen of Rutgers University, and certainly a large part of that is his teaching,” said Rutgers President Richard L. McCormick. “Barry is known for his lively classroom style and his ability to engage students in Victorian novels and prose, works that students often initially resist because of a perception that they lack relevance to their own lives.” Read the full story here

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

NJ families brace for possible loss of tuition deduction

Kathy Marsico of Emerson NJ has $1,000 riding on whether Congress extends a tax deduction for college tuition that expired at the start of the year. That's how much she was able to lower her taxes by using the deduction for her two sons' tuition last year, and how much more she'll have to pay by April 15 if Congress does not act.

Click here to read the entire story.

Related story:
Killing tuition deduction an insult to middle class (Rochester Democrat)

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

New film offers eye-opening look at New Jersey’s largest city — Rutgers Focus

New film offers eye-opening look at New Jersey’s largest city — Rutgers Focus - “The Once and Future Newark,” a documentary hosted by history professor Clement A. Price, premiered on NJN Public Television October 4 - The program follows Price as he tours the city with colleagues, visiting 18 historical, cultural, and, in some cases, uniquely Newark sites. These include Branch Brook Park (shown in a postcard view 1904), the Ironbound, Weequahic High School, the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, New Jersey Performing Arts Center NJPAC, Essex County Courthouse, and Rutgers’ Newark campus, where Price is Board of Governors Distinguished Service Professor specializing in urban history, African-American history, and New Jersey and Newark history.

The film is available in DVD format only and may be purchased.