LSLS 2015: A CMLE Scholarship

Maria Burnham, SRRH Library Media Specialist
Maria Burnham, SRRH Library Media Specialist

The following post was submitted by CMLE scholarship recipient Maria Burnham, Library Media Specialist at Sauk Rapids – Rice High School.

I attended the Lake Superior Library Symposium (LSLS) on the campus of the University of Minnesota Duluth on June 5, 2015 thanks to a scholarship from CMLE.  A friend of mine from high school is a librarian at UMD and is one of the planners for the conference.  He asked me to attend the conference as well as present on what I’ve been doing with my school library MakerSpace. I had not heard of the conference before, but I am certainly glad I made the journey north to attend.

I very much enjoyed the LSLS (as well as all of the social gatherings before and after the conference).  The conference numbers are quite small, making it easy to spend time connecting with other professional librarians, particularly those who are academic or public librarians.  And although I may have been the only K-12 professional at the conference this year, I learned a great deal because many topics that pertain to public or academic libraries also pertain to my media center.

The keynote speaker for the morning was Char Booth, a fierce library advocate.  She challenged us to think about reframing our narratives of our library, to make sure that people don’t just see us as a container of content, but rather a place of experience for patrons.  Char focused on advocacy and outreach, and it got me thinking about how I show people what the SRRHS library is and does for my school community.

Following the keynote, I attended several breakout sessions including one about privacy literacy,  one about using data to paint a better picture of our libraries, and one about planning around community needs. From these sessions, I gathered many ideas on how I can better keep data on my library activity, how I can set library goals to ensure library efficiency, and how to go about strategically planning for the goals I set forth as a result of the needs of my community.

I am hoping to attend the LSLS again next year, and if any K-12 librarians want to attend with me, I’m game for carpooling!  From this conference, I feel inspired to continue to grow professionally and in ways that will benefit my patrons.

As a bonus, I heard about a few professional book titles that I will be looking into.  I wanted to share these with you as well:

  • Angwin, Julia. Dragnet Nation: A Quest for Privacy, Security, and Freedom in a World of Relentless Surveillance. New York, NY: St. Martin’s Griffin, 2015. Print.
  • Heath, Chip, and Dan Heath. Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die. New York: Random House, 2007. Print.
  • Jarvis, Jeff. Public Parts: How Sharing in the Digital Age Improves the Way We Work and Live. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, 2011. Print.
  • Nissenbaum, Helen. Privacy in Context: Technology, Policy, and the Integrity of Social Life. Stanford, CA: Stanford Law, 2010. Print.