Saturday, August 28, 2010

Hubbub Party: The Best for Last

The last Hubbub party I coordinated was probably the best one. For the fourth year, UK Libraries and UK IT welcomed students to the Hub, the information commons in the Young Library. This event is part of K Week, our new student welcome week. We had a killer time slot, though our crowd was somewhat smaller than years past. Every year there are multiple activities going on at the same time, and this year was no different. Some of us speculated that the students might be a bit worn out; one student even told me that he'd had enough free pizza. Who knew.

Our activities went off without a hitch: the Amazing Palm Reading Librarian, the photo booth, video games, board games, and coloring pages were back again. This year IT added a couple of "Minute to Win IT" games which were quite popular. One of the games involved throwing as many floppy disks as you could across the computer lab into a trash can. When asked how much a floppy would hold, one student rather authoritatively said "1 GB!"

In years past (2007, 2008, 2009), this recap post described what didn't work and what we would do differently. This year I am actually stumped at that one. Yes, we ran out of cups again, but our friends at Canteen vending found some in the truck, so no one even knew. Yes, due to the lack of snafus, I had too many volunteers, but most of us got to watch the party and interact with students more than ever.

What will I suggest for future planners? Bring back Gilbert the balloon artist. Street Fighter for Dreamcast is more popular than any modern game. You can't have enough coloring pages and crayons. Some of our simple, initial ideas remain the best ones--the Amazing Palm Reading Librarian and the photo booth are still huge hits.

Thank you to all the staff who have helped over the years to make the Hubbub a successful and memorable student event. We could not have done it without you.

This terrific little video is a great way to end this post:

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Changes for the Uncommon Commons

This month I was appointed the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Research at the University of Kentucky Libraries. This is an exciting new position which includes administrative responsibility for all of the public services based in the William T. Young Library as well as nine branch locations. I will have significant planning, budgeting, and development responsibilities, as well as the opportunity to develop new partnerships and initiatives and create an overall vision for library public services with a terrific team.

As a result, I am no longer managing the information commons, though it is a part of the Academic Affairs and Research division. My last hurrah in the Hub will be our annual Hubbub party next week (see 2009, 2008, 2007). At some point I will post a summary of Hubbub #4 with suggestions for future library welcome events.

What will happen to this blog? While I doubt that I will write very often, I do plan to continue sharing stories about library spaces and services, both commons-specific and beyond. I expect you will see me more often on Twitter, sharing articles and other tidbits of interest. But don't unsubscribe just yet. Thanks for reading!