As summer ends, I want to take a moment to acknowledge the incredible service that you all have provided to your communities. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to have seen the work first hand and to engage with all of you in our work. No doubt that September will bring a whole host of challenges; our staff is here and ready to lend assistance. You’ll see us physically and virtually at a whole host of events and engagements this fall; don’t hesitate to reach out if we can help you in your work.

-Sarah Sogigian, Executive Director

Introducing iRead

MLS is excited to announce that we’ll be partnering with the iRead program for summer 2022 and beyond! We’ve enjoyed our time with CSLP, and look forward to working with iRead to bring you more engaging themes, programs, and artwork. iRead was developed by the Illinois Library Association, and we’re pleased to join Minnesota, California, Iowa, Oregon, and libraries on military bases around the world in sharing a high quality themed summer program.

Read more about iRead here, including the announcement made earlier this spring: 

And save the dates for 2 webinars- September 22, 2021 from 3-4 pm EST General webinar from iRead. Launch of 2022 theme, introduction of opportunity to participate in 2023 Resource Guide development, and input into 2024 theme. Particulars of MA libraries and ordering will not be covered. That will happen on October 21, 2021 from 11am-12pm EST. More details and how to sign up coming soon!  

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*NEW* On Demand Gale Tutorials

What’s the difference between a Gale periodical database and In Context database? What are the best resources to use for high school students vs. college students and when? Which database contains science experiments? How can the databases be used to support library programming? What kind of usage data can you get on the databases?

These new 10-minute tutorials are based on the recent in-person Institute for Database Engagement and Leadership (IDEAL) program, a competitive multi-month long program designed to educate library staff on the Gale statewide databases and to improve usage statistics through a self-designed and directed project. Now everyone can attend and experience IDEAL with this on demand self-paced tutorial series. You’ll learn the ins and outs of the databases, new tools, some hidden gems, test your knowledge, and more.

Access the sessions:

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Climate Preparedness Week: Partnership Opportunity and conversation with author David Pogue!

The Massachusetts Library System is partnering with Communities Responding to Extreme Weather and the Blue Marble Librarians on Climate Prep Week.  Climate Prep Week is held from Sept 24th – 30th.  Your library can host your own event(s) or partner on publicizing central events.  Partners can also promote the Climate Prep Week Drawing Contest.  MLS is hosting the keynote presented by David Pogue, author of How to Prepare for Climate Change: A Practical Guide to Surviving the Chaos on Friday, Sept 24th at 2 PM.  The keynote is open to librarians and the public.  Register now to attend!  The Blue Marble Librarians have developed book discussion materials that you can use to host your own book discussion following the keynote.  Join us on Friday, Sept 10th for a special virtual chat with the Blue Marble Librarians and David Pogue to review the facilitator guide and get tips to host your own book discussion. 

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Strategic Planning Blog Series: new post!

Getting started with your library’s strategic plan?  Looking to brush up on the fundamentals?  Check out our new blog series:

Stay tuned for the final post in this series: Putting the Finishing Touches on Your Plan.

Reach out to MLS Strategic Planning Consultants, Kristi Chadwick and Michelle Eberle for more support.  Reach out to Rob Favini (MBLC) with any questions about the MBLC strategic planning approval and filing process.  

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Confronting Health Misinformation: What Librarians Can Do

On July 15, 2021, the U.S. Surgeon General published the report, Confronting Health Misinformation:  The U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory on Building a Healthy Information Environment, which declared a public health infodemic.  The report includes ways to take action to “slow the spread of misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.”  The advisory includes guidance for specific professions to take action.  While librarians were not included in the report, libraries are one of the most trusted organizations in every community and are essential partners in alleviating the infodemic and confronting health misinformation.  Read more…

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Staff Profiles

Each month we will be highlighting two MLS staff members and sharing a little bit about them. This month we would like to introduce you to…

Amos Thomas

As MLS IT specialist, I provide direct support to users across the organization. This can include helping set up hardware or software, diagnosing connectivity or data access problems, answering questions about hardware or software, and helping users access shared drives and devices.
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April Mazza

Everyday is different, which is one of the things I love about my job! Some days I am visiting libraries (virtually during COVID), sometimes teaching, sometimes advising one-on-one, and almost every day catching up on emails! I work with MLS members on youth and school services, collections, space planning, and much more.  Special projects include the Statewide Summer Library Program and the annual Teen Summit.
Read More…

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