Libraries Continue to Take Active Roles in the Classrooms


EPICS WLPL Team with Megan Sapp NelsonMegan Sapp Nelson, assistant professor of library sciences and coordinator of public services in the Engineering Library, has been actively involved in the Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) program since 2005.

EPICS is a unique program in which teams of undergraduates are designing, building, and deploying real systems to solve engineering-based problems for local community service and education organizations. EPICS was founded at Purdue University in Fall 1995.

Teams of eight to 18 students include freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Teams are advised by Purdue faculty, staff, and engineers from local industry, along with graduate teaching assistants. Students earn one or two academic credits each semester and may register for up to four years. Projects may last several years, so tasks of significant size and impact can be tackled. There are currently 29 teams.

Megan’s role as an advisor and instructor has given her the opportunity to make contacts with faculty and students from a variety of departments and disciplines across campus. “My involvement with the EPICS program allows me the opportunity to collaborate with engineering faculty and students to develop a curriculum where information literacy skills can be taught,” says Megan.

Megan co-advises the West Lafayette Public Library (WLPL) Team with Jeffrey Schwab, Research Data Networking Director at ITaP and Acting Director of Data Networking. “Having Megan with her background in library science with the team is an incredible asset with helping students relate to the real world issues and oppEPICS Team Teachingortunities that libraries have to offer,” says Jeffrey.

The team works with the WLPL library director and staff, providing engineering solutions to provide better service to their patrons. Among the many projects of the WLPL team are the WLPL wireless networking system, Kid’s Interactive Display, and Music Kiosk. Kid’s Interactive Display allows young patrons to interact with a virtual environment and computer game using green screen technology. The Music Kiosk project is a ‘try before you borrow’ music-database system that patrons use to view and preview the library's database of music. The WLPL team intends to better equip the library with the necessary resources to continue serving the West Lafayette community with unmatched media access.

“My role as a co-advisor affords me the perfect opportunity to show faculty and students that information literacy can appear in many different guises,” says Megan. “Engineering faculty members identify the skills librarians teach as professional skills, and we call it information literacy.” Some of the skills Megan teaches include: goal setting and measuring success; how to conduct an interview with an engineering client; copyright and fair use issues for media based designs; a basic understanding of how library tools such as OPACs work; and general skills about using library resources and how to apply them.


Libraries Updates for the Fall Semester

Several campus libraries have implemented changes over the summer months. Here is a quick summary of some of those changes. Don't see your library's updates listed here? Email to have them included in the next issue of INSIDE.

Physics Library:

  • The book collection has been moved from the second floor to the first floor, to make it easier for our staff to help locate books and for faculty to get to the books more quickly.  We found that the current journals, which did populate the first floor, weren’t being used, and our highest usage physical items are now our book collection.  We have received several positive comments even before we finished the move. 

EAS Library:

  • The circulation/reference area has been redesigned. The taller circulation desk was replaced with a desk from the workroom and several pieces of workroom furniture were moved for better access. Thanks to Auxiliary Services for helping with the switch.


  • The core collection of UGRL is being transferred to HSSE. This consolidation will enable patrons to find many of their print resources in one location. The Contemporary Literature collection; media; and current periodicals, including newspapers will remain at UGRL.
  • HSSE and UGRL have both moved to single service desks. Patrons now have access to a variety of services in one location, the iDesk. As an additional convenience, DLC media equipment is circulated at the UGRL iDesk on the main level.


  • Phase I renovation project is complete with the opening of the corporate study space and conference room and the Learn Lab.
  • A new paging system for students waiting for reserve items already checked out has been instituted.


  • All of the 4th floor journal collections have been (re-) shifted to create room and adequate growth space for the LC books.
  •  A scanning project is ready to launch now that our weeding process is completed. This should last the semester and will also included PNHS library’s collection. 

Purdue University Library is the Federal Depository Library Spotlight for August 2009

Purdue Governemtn Document Web PagePurdue University Libraries is being featured as the Federal Depository Library Spotlight for August 2009. Printed below is the article, featured on the FDLP Desktop. Click here to see the original article.

With 102 years of service since being designated a federal depository library in 1907, this large academic library has done an excellent job in maintaining a depository collection that best meets the needs of its students, faculty and general public.

This Land Grant University offers over 56 degrees and 5,800 courses, and enrolls more than 40,000 students on its West Lafayette campus. The depository collection is distributed among the numerous campus libraries, in order to disseminate information to the appropriate areas of need.

The depository has subject guides, course guides, and the maintenance of an ongoing list of “Frequently Asked Questions” that are of interest to people monitoring current events.

The library’s Government Documents Web page also promotes government information through the maintenance of a “Government Documents of the Week” and “Featured Sites of the Week” section. This enables people to explore topics of current or general interest through depository resources. Visitors may not even have known that government information played a part in the topic!

The library’s efforts to connect users to government information supports not only library users, but library staff as well, since much of the information is related to current events and hence may be harder for reference staff to track down.
Finally, the depository coordinator, Bert Chapman, is committed to providing detailed subject help through listserv postings as well as through the online reference service Government Information Online (GIO). By participating in these and other initiatives, he shares his vast knowledge by providing quality information and reference services to both library users and librarians nationwide.
The library’s Government Information at Purdue University Libraries Web page currently states:

Government publications are a public asset that enhances individual and community knowledge of governmental activities and knowledge of U.S. History, the histories of U.S. states, and history of foreign countries. The Government Documents Department is prepared to assist you in meeting your government information needs.

For all the energy directed to educating both users and librarians alike, GPO would like to thank the Purdue University Libraries. Their willingness to share their expertise benefits us all.

Congratulations to Government Documents faculty and staff.


Libraries Distinguished Lecture Features Purdue Alumna and NPR Host Moira Gunn

Moira GunnOn September 14, 2009, the Libraries will present the seventh speaker in the Distinguished Lecture Series — Dr. Moira Gunn, host of NPR’s TechNation and a Purdue alumna, honorary doctorate, and College of Science laureate. Dr. Gunn’s talk will be called “The Future of Information,” looking at how global information systems will evolve in the next 10-20 years.

In addition to her honors from Purdue, Dr. Gunn is a former NASA scientist and engineer, and currently serves as the program director for Information Systems Programs at the University of San Francisco. She was the first woman to earn a PhD in mechanical engineering from Purdue University, where she also earned a master’s in computer science. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.

Moira Gunn Book CoverHer 2007 book Welcome to BioTech Nation ... My Unexpected Odyssey into the Land of Small Molecules, Lean Genes, and Big Ideas, is credited with making issues in biotechnology accessible for a wide audience.

See below for a full description of Dr. Gunn’s talk:

“Today’s tech-savvy are Linked-in, iPhone’d, IM’d and Never Lost. Texting has surpassed both voice and email as the communications conduit of choice worldwide, and the idea of complete strangers contacting you isn’t an invasion of privacy but a business opportunity … or perhaps a social opportunity. From Facebook to MySpace, on-demand person-to-person contact and instant 24/7 information gives us only an inkling of the depth of this digital revolution, and no area of society is immune. The wiki-fication of every imaginable task – from scheduling to document creation to project management to academia – has changed the basis for how humans interact, make agreements and take action. Grass-roots organizations recruit and involve new members without ever meeting, while political campaigns engineer flash crowds and seed Twitter rumors. Mainstream journalism has been forced to embrace volunteer videos, as YouTube becomes the front ranks of raw journalism.  At the same time, Global Information Systems are emerging, giving us global insight and making global strategy an imperative - all of this while science is uncovering the DNA of every living thing. Dr. Moira Gunn gives us insight into the future of information as finally … the planet is one, big network.”

All staff are invited to a reception from 5:00-6:30 p.m. in the HSSE Reading Room in Stewart Center, followed by the lecture, which begins at 7:00 p.m. in Fowler Hall. Dr. Gunn will be available to sign her 2007 book Welcome to BioTech Nation following the lecture.

To listen to archived programs of TechNation, visit


Libraries Welcome New Students

As freshmen, transfer students, and new graduate students arrive to campus this fall, Libraries faculty and staff are helping them get started on the right foot with various orientation activities. Keep your eye out for new students in the Libraries starting with Boiler Gold Rush (BGR) on August 17th, and see below for a list of orientation activities.

Monday, August 17 and Tuesday, August 18
BGR Special Interest Sessions featuring “Libraries Amazing Race” and “Libraries Amazing Race: Geocache”

Wednesday, August 19
BGR Spotlight Presentation for all incoming undergrads and transfer students
BGR Resource Fair – South Ballroom of PMU, 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.


For international students and scholars(separate from BGR) include:

Thursday, August 13Boiler Gold Rush in HSSE Library
Presentation for incoming international grad students

Thursday, August 13 and Friday, August 14
Tours of subject-specialized libraries

Thursday, August 20
Tours of Undergraduate Library

Friday, August 21
Presentation for incoming international undergrad students



Common Reading Program Kicks Off with Convocation

Bich Minh NguyenThis summer, thousands of first-year Purdue students were given a free copy of Purdue’s first Common Reading Program book selection Stealing Buddha’s Dinner. On August 23, students and the rest of campus will have a unique opportunity to hear the author Bich Mihn Nguyen, associate professor of English at Purdue, speak about her book in a kick-off convocation in the Elliott Hall of Music.

In order to allow all first year students and others from campus to attend, two convocations are being held — the first begins at 1:00 p.m., and the second at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday the 23rd. Seating preference will be given to first-year students but all of campus is invited to attend.

Stealing Buddha's Dinner book coverNguyen’s remarks will be followed by a short address by Provost Randy Woodson, reinforcing the high academic expectations Purdue has for its students and encouraging students to participate in events planned throughout the year to further explore the book selection.

At the conclusion of the convocation, attendees will be encouraged to suggest books for next year's program using an online form.

This year marks the first year of Purdue’s Common Reading Program, which is partially funded by the Office of the Provost and coordinated by the Student Access, Transition and Success Programs department and the Purdue Libraries. The book was selected from more than 100 titles by a campus-wide committee.

For more information about the program, visit Copies of the book are on reserve or reference in all of our libraries, with the largest number of copies available in the Hicks Undergraduate Library.


Pedestrian Safety on Campus


A pedestrian is injured in a traffic crash every eight minutes (source).
Between drivers distracted by cell phones and texting, and pedestrians absorbed in iPods and their own phone conversations, it is surprising there are not more accidents. Accidents between pedestrians and vehicles on campus typically fall into the 'least serious' category from the National Cooperative Highway Research Program, which included the following (source):

          • Vehicle turning at intersection (18.4% serious and fatal injury)
          • Backing vehicle (22.5% serious and fatal injury)
          • Bus-related (22.7% serious and fatal injury)
          • Driver violation at intersection (27.8% serious and fatal injury)

Test your pedestrian safety savvy with this interactive web site, Safer Journey: Once at the site, start with the Journey to learn basic safety rules, follow up with the Quiz to see what you recall from the Journey, then visit the Library for additional resources.

Here are some tips to decrease your chances of being the victim of a vehicle/pedestrian accident:

  • Cross at intersections.
  • Look both ways and behind you, even if the walk light is illuminated.  
  • Make eye contact with drivers who are stopped alongside or behind you at an intersection waiting to make a right hand turn across your path. 
  • Make eye contact with drivers who are across from you waiting to make a left hand turn that will take them across your path.  
  • When walking after dark, wear reflective clothing and/or carry a flashlight.

In the event of an accident:
According to Kristi Evans of Purdue Radiological and Environmental Management, if you are involved in a pedestrian/vehicle accident, please follow these guidelines:

  • Call 911 for campus medical transport at no charge to Home Hospital, Saint Elizabeth Hospital, or Clarian Arnett.  
  • Report all injuries to your supervisor. Be sure you and your supervisor complete a First Report of Injury form available on the REM web site: or call 49-41430. (In the Libraries, the first reporting call should be to Tom Haworth/Lib HR.)
  • Employees who are injured at work may be covered under Purdue's workers compensation insurance, even when walking to work from your vehicle or leaving from work to your vehicle location.

Some safety measures that are being considered to further protect campus pedestrians are recommendations to make the main part of campus pedestrian-only by redirecting all major vehicle traffic to the outskirts, to enable scramble timing for crosswalks which gives an all red signal for vehicles and offers pedestrian crossing in any direction - even diagonally, and to lengthen the pedestrian light timing at larger intersections to allow enough time to safely cross. 

With the increasing number of pedestrians on campus each semester, it is imperative that a solution be reached to make the campus safer for pedestrians and drivers alike. 

Additional links related to pedestrian safety - 

Tippecanoe County Seasonally Adjusted Average Daily Traffic (1999-2008) - this map shows traffic numbers on Purdue University Campus in 2008 to be averaging around 20,000 counts and higher along State Street and Northwestern Avenue.

Tippecanoe County 2008 Transportation Hot Spot List - submitted online by the public and by a citizen participation committee (CPC), some areas mentioned are related to campus area concerns.

Purdue University Physical Facilities Pedestrian Traffic Impact Map - map of campus construction that will impact pedestrian traffic

Pedestrian Road Safety Audit Guidelines and Prompt Lists, July 2007 – statistics on pedestrian behaviors that lead to crashes and ways to improve safety

PEDSAFE: Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System - Crash statistics, crash analysis, and objectives all give information and recommendations on pedestrian safety. /

Pedestrian Safety Report to Congress, Aug 2008 by the U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration -

Indiana Pedestrian Stats 2004

Indiana Code related to pedestrians -

Pedestrian Safety Campaign Materials -


University Press Moves to STEW

Libraries Auxiliary Staff began moving Purdue University Press offices from SCC-E on Monday, August 10 to their new location in Stewart Center 370-373. Staff moving include Bryan Shaffer, Katherine Purple, Becky Corbin, and Beth Robertson.

University Press Move 1

University Press 2

AUX student staff conducting the move include David Solomon, John Nguyen, and Kody Hall.

  • Libraries Updates for the Fall Semester
  • Gov Docs Featured Library for August 2009
  • Libraries Distinguished Lecture Announced
  • Libraries Welcome New Students
  • Common Reading Program Kicks Off with Convocation
  • Pedestrian Safety on Campus
  • Purdue University Press Moves
  • Off the Shelf
  • Libraries in the News
  • Tippy Update
  • Announcements
  • Libraries Staff A - Z
  • Student Staff
  • What's Cooking?


Off the shelf

Continuing Vacancies

  • Secretary IV, .50FTE University Copyright Office (University Posting #0900518)
  • Windows Systems Administrator, DPIA-Info Technology (University Posting #0900727)
  • Operations Coordinator Engineering Library (University Posting #0900655)

To view all Purdue job postings visit the Purdue employment page. If you have additional questions, contact Tom Haworth, 494-2903.


libraries in the news

Resource Shelf, August 1, 2009
Librarians in the Hall: Instructional Outreach in Campus Residences, Paper by Catherine Fraser Riehle, Michael Witt

Federal Depository Library Program, August 1, 2009
Depository Library Spotlight: Purdue University Libraries

Purdue Exponent, August 7, 2009
Sammie Morris featured in Staff reflects on 140 years of Purdue history, pg. 1 and photo, pg. 4
University Press gets new director, pg. 5


Tippy update


Tippy's recent travels found him in a chicken yard in Tucson, Arizona.
Photo credit: Sheila Merrigan (U of AZ), taken at a farm outside of Tucson.

Check USAIN Conference for more information about the conference to be held at Purdue in May 2010.

Have a Tippy photo? Send it to Marianne Bracke. View other Tippy photos here.


Libraries Staff a - Z

Data Research Scientist
Research Department

Q.  What do you enjoy most about your job and why?
A.  I really enjoy the creative aspects of my job and being able to push the boundaries of what librarians can do. It is very gratifying to be a part of a cutting edge organization like the Purdue Libraries.     

Q.  How long have you worked in the Libraries and at Purdue?
A.  A little more than two years.

Q.  What is one unforgettable experience that has happened to you or your coworkers while working in the library?
A.  In talking with faculty about data curation, I frequently hear them say something like “I didn’t know librarians could do that.” 

Q.  What’s your favorite book, Web site, movie, or database?
A.  I can’t say that I have one favorite book, but I really enjoy the work of Harlan Ellison and Neil Gaiman.

Q.  Have you been in all the Purdue Libraries?
A.  Not yet unfortunately. I hope to someday soon.

Q.  Coffee, tea, water, or soft drink?
A.  Coke Classic and plenty of it. My first job was at a Dunkin’ Donuts and I came home reeking of coffee most every day for a year and a half. That was enough for me to swear off coffee for life.

Q.  What do you like to do for fun?
A.  I have two sons, an eight year old and a four year old, so I’m never at a loss for fun. I also play on the neighborhood softball team. Frankly I have no business being on the field given my complete and utter lack of athletic ability, but I enjoy getting together and socializing with my neighbors.

Q.  What Library teams and groups are you associated with?
A.  I am the LAPSAC representative on the Infrastructure Council (IC), and as such I am also a LAPSAC officer. I am also a member of the Libraries e-data task force that was chartered to explore what data services the Libraries might offer and the infrastructure, policies, activities, etc. that would be needed to support these services.   

Q.  Feel free to include any information about yourself that you would like to share with the staff.
A.  Before I came to work here at Purdue, I was a graduate student here in the department of Political Science. Although I did not stay long enough to get my degree, I have always had a fondness for Purdue.  It’s great to be back!


Student Profile

Creative Writing

Q.  What Library do you work in?
A.  I work in the Interlibrary Loan Office located on the second floor of HSSE.

Q.  Where are you from (hometown)?
A.  My hometown is Darlington, Indiana which is your average Indiana small town in most respects though we do have a library and that was always my favorite spot in town. Darlington is close to Crawfordsville, hometown of Wabash College.

Q.  What do you like about the Purdue Libraries?
A.  I really like the people. Everyone is really friendly and helpful, and not just to me as a student staff member but to the student body in general.

Q.  What’s your favorite book?
A.  Now that’s a good question, and as a big reader I get asked that often. I always answer and then think of about a hundred good books I could have said instead, but I think some of the best books I’ve ever read were Stephen King’s Dark Tower series. I don’t think you can ever really go wrong with the King, and even if a person doesn’t like the general vein in which he usually writes Dark Tower is most definitely out of the usual vein and worth a read.

Q.  If you could add a class to Purdue’s curriculum, what would it be?
A.  One class that they did have that I’d love to see back was an English class dedicated to The Lord of the Rings, but in general I’d love more English classes dedicated to or built around certain books or series of books (though at least they have English classes dedicated to certain genres which I have yet to take but plan to in the future).

Q.  What’s the best birthday present you’ve received?
A.  My alto saxophone. It’s definitely one of my most prized possessions and I have a blast playing in the Montgomery County Civic Band each summer.

Q.  Do you use Facebook or MySpace?
I use both Facebook and MySpace actually. MySpace I prefer, because I keep it restricted to just close friends and family. Facebook is good for keeping up with a lot of old friends though, and the people I knew in high school. I have a feeling it will come in handy one of these days when my graduating class has a reunion (which I can’t believe I’ve been out of high school for so long, tempis fugit).

Q.  Who would like to meet and have dinner with?
A.  I’d love to meet Joss Whedon, and I’m sure I’d completely forget about eating dinner as I could sit and listen to him talk for hours and hours. I went to the San Diego Comic-Con just a couple weeks back and he was at a panel and it’s just so much fun to hear him talk about what he has created. I also wouldn’t say no to meeting and having dinner with Stephen King.

Q.  What do you do for fun?
A. I love to read, and so I really try my hardest to incorporate that into my fun time even though school can burn me out on it. I also like to play video games, and I just got to the end of a game called Knights of the Old Republic which is one of the best games I’ve ever played.  I’m a big fan of movies too so there’s nothing like a bowl of popcorn and watching an old favorite or something I just got from Netflix.

Q.  Future Plans?
A. I want to study abroad in Europe (more specifically in England), and then after I graduate I know I’d definitely like to take a year off from school. I’d like to move and maybe travel a little if I can afford to. I’m a creative writing major so hopefully lots of writing is in my future, but that’s part of the wanting to travel. As much as Indiana is home I’d really like to see the rest of the world, but there is the option of furthering my education too so it’s all up in the air really. It’s definitely exciting to have so many options, and it’s a little scary that I’m going to be totally on my own soon.

If you would like to feature one of your students assistants, please contact Teresa Brown.


Roasted Tomato Soup
Visit the Libraries Intranet site for
this recipe posted by Teresa Brown.

  • As the information specialists on campus, we are dedicated to providing essential information and expertise that meet the unique learning and discovery needs of our students and faculty.
  • We promise to enhance their experience and success by providing guidance, education, resources, and innovation.
  • We create and support a welcoming and dynamic learning environment with access to knowledge anytime, anywhere, and in any format.
  • As a result, our students and faculty will know and value that they are better prepared for academic success, professional growth, and lifelong learning.

Copy Deadline

Copy for the August 26 issue is due by
August 24, 2009.
Send to Teresa Brown