Attending the 2013 Symposium was truly a valuable and informative experience, and it opened my eyes to the supportive and welcoming community of academic librarians in NYC. It was empowering to see and hear from people doing such innovative things in the library community of which I am now a part. Because I work in an academic library setting where the focus is on digital projects and publishing ventures, it was particularly relevant to listen to the panel discuss their approach to digital initiatives. Learning about the unique (and sometimes familiar) perspectives of each panel member allowed me to understand systematic approaches for dealing with project acceptance or rejection, project initiation, and collaborative workflows. It also helped me to situate my workplace in a broader context relative to other similar centers.
Prior to listening to Adam Rogers speak I was unaware of the impact that a 3D printer can have on a student body, and more particularly what the value of one is in an academic library setting. However, after he explained the projects he had seen come to fruition using the 3D printer, I realized just how important this new technology can be in the hands of students. Libraries traditionally offer services and resources that enhance a patron´s understanding of a particular subject, enabling them to make discoveries of their own. The 3D printer takes this concept in a new direction, allowing libraries to be the vehicle for a different kind of learning, through experimentation with and an understanding of physical objects. It was an important idea to grasp; the role of libraries are changing, and this is one way that we as librarians can adapt.
Kerri O’Connell, Pratt Institute
Kerri will complete her MLS from Pratt Institute in December 2013. She is currently working at the Center for Digital Research and Scholarship at Columbia University as a project coordinator, overseeing open access publishing ventures.