Summer means a change of pace in an academic library, and Summer 2018 was filled with behind-the-scenes changes. One of my projects was to go through the entire literature section of the Mundt's book collection (namely the P's, for Library of Congress aficionados!) volume by volume. Since this was a project that had been shelved (forgive the pun) for decades, it was a fascinating look at what books have stood the test of time (and there were a lot of those) and those that were merely popular at the time, and possibly for good reason, but no longer meet that test. Since we have the Escape collection and Overdrive to meet current "popular at the time" reading needs, it felt good to make our Literature section more selection. Lean and mean, if you will!
We are also very encouraged that the Mundt Library has risen to the top of the list for renovation, on the DSU campus. We have already had one fruitful meeting with the selected architects (CO-OP Architecture) and are preparing for our next round of meetings. For those who participated in our focus groups and community meetings in late 2017, please know that your input was key in the initial conversations with the architects. As the academic year commences, the campus community will be asked to continue to provide insight and feedback for this exciting project.
My family consists of my husband Glen and our three adult children. Glen retired from Lutheran ministry in 2016 and since then has filled his time managing our home and dog Panda, playing accordion in the Irish Band "Contae Lach", and working part-time at O'Reilly's Auto Parts.
Our oldest son Joel is a registered nurse living and working in St. Paul, second son Daniel is an all-purpose outdoorsman in Telluride, Colorado, and daughter Hannah works as a children's theatre education program coordinator in Austin, Texas.
Glen and I like to hike at Lake Herman State Park with Panda, travel, read, and watch episodes of "The Office" and "Parks & Rec" on a continuous loop.
My philosophy of libraries is that they exist for everyone, even for the people who may not use them, or who may not consider their existence that important.
An academic library has particular importance: it is truly the heart of the university. The library welcomes all learners, whether they are students, faculty, staff, or community members. We exist to provide access to knowledge and learning, and we provide spaces for people to think, work quietly, work in collaboration, or interact with friends. We do not give grades to students, we do not judge the things you like to read. We do not judge your reference questions, but rather hope to help you clarify your own thinking through examining the information we may help you find. We love big questions! We love details.
As we start a new year at DSU, I am energized by the physical changes on campus, but more energized by the return of students---our purpose and our future. Cheers!
Karl E. Mundt Library, Dakota State University, Madison, South Dakota 57042