Approved: ___________ Fall Faculty Meeting
Cunningham Memorial Library
Fall Faculty Meeting, 10/10/06
Present: Myrna McCallister,
Dean M. McCallister called the meeting to order at 11:20 a.m.
M. McCallister began by discussing efforts to replace vacancies on the library faculty. She noted that campus-wide, there were no requests for new positions. Everyone has been trying to fill vacancies. The Library has lost six dating back to David Kaunelis’ departure last year. We have been given permission to replace the head of reference, the metadata librarian position and a technology/science librarian. Also on the list of positions was a head of systems (OIT). M. McCallister said she asked Mark Green what that meant; further discussions with him and with Ed Kinley didn’t clear up the matter. She has been told not to advertise for the head of library systems position until the Provost and Ed Kinley could discuss it. She apparently will not be included in that discussion.
M. McCallister also stated she had proposed some weeks ago a redesign of a support staff position which would take on some of the responsibilities of the electronic resources librarian. The reviewers denied the proposal. She noted we’re in a difficult position because there are so few of us – we don’t have a lot of flexibility. She wants to get started with forming a search committee for the head of systems, the technology/science librarian, and the metadata librarian position. Maybe we’ll know in a few more days what’s going on.
M. Miller said she’s heard many times that OIT thinks the library doesn’t need its own systems department. OIT has the ear of the president and provost. Maybe the library faculty needs to prepare a white paper explaining why we need a systems department. Perhaps a memo from the Library Faculty Assembly would be appropriate. J. Kerico suggested getting a list of the other universities that have their own library systems department. M. McCallister said the current situation could be something as simple as having the position reviewed by Ed Kinley. M. Miller said we need to meet about this and find the things that people outside the library can understand. S. Frey said maybe we need to find out why they think we don’t need one. They could say, “We can do everything you need.” We need to be able to address their ideas. B. Hine asked whether anyone at OIT has experience at other universities. She’d spoken with someone who said that libraries are undervalued as technology champions. M. Miller said we need to address myths we can debunk. B. Hine said we need to highlight the people in the background – the library’s work doesn’t happen by magic. M. McCallister said they don’t have a good idea of how much IT-type work we do here. They said IT people are those who maintain databases for end users, but when she pointed out that’s what our catalogers do, they wouldn’t accept them as IT workers. C. May asked, “If Visions [Wabash Valley Visions and Voices] isn’t IT, what is?” R. McGiverin noted that from their point of view, the library’s having its own IT department is analogous to all the other departments on campus having their own IT people. S. Frey said the library needs to get allies; we need to educate others about why we need an IT department. M. McCallister said it’s an issue of centralization as well; there are economies to be gained from consolidating; there’s also an issue of security. She added they’re not saying they want to take away the library’s IT department; there’s a question about the head of library systems that needs to be resolved. B. Hine said that they don’t understand what we do – they make changes that throw us. V. Muyumba reported numerous problems getting IT computers to work with cataloging. B. Hine said there’s a lot of the Ed Stockey mentality of “all’s you gotta do is…” and they don’t understand the “gotta do.” M. Miller said she’d like to see someone update the web document which describes the library’s technology achievements through 1998; much has happened since then, and we don’t have one document that highlights our achievements as that one does. It would show them what we do and demonstrate our need for our own systems head. M. McCallister responded they could say that since they’ve gained so much staff and size, they can do it better than we can. K. Gaul said the library wouldn’t be a high priority for OIT.
M. McCallister said she’d like to see the search committees formed, with at least three faculty members per committee. B. Hine noted the Library Administrative Affairs Committee reviews the draft position descriptions. M. McCallister said we need to move really quickly. She asked R. McGiverin to send out an email for faculty volunteers for the search committees.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:54 a.m.