Meet Student Attendee: Sam Watson

I had a mentor at my first Midwest conference: Clare Leibfarth at Kent State University. Five years later, I became a mentor, too. So I’m excited to introduce my mentee, Samuel Watson. Sam is a library school student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a GMR Student Awardee. I missed the official mentor-mentee meetup on Saturday evening, but Sam and I got to chat on several occasions later. I’m happy to learn that he is very interested in health sciences librarianship especially in Pharmacy because of his experience of working as a pharmacy technician.
Going along with my theme of 3-2-1 questions, I asked Sam these questions via emails. Below are his responses. Thank you, Sam, for sharing your thoughts!

Three things I learned from this conference:
1) I learned about the existence of Embase. An important resource to know about considering my pharmacy interest.
2) I learned that poster publishing isn’t all that intimidating. I’ll have to participate in one myself soon.
3) I learned the many concepts and issues important in medical librarianship coincide with my current SLIS education, which is highly reassuring as I near graduation.
Things that surprised me:
1) It would appear that everyone in the medical librarianship field in the Midwest knows everyone else. There were no strangers at this conference.
2) I was surprised by the variety of career paths that revolve around the medical librarianship field.
One thing I’ll never forget is that Bourbon isn’t that bad. In small doses.

One Thing that You’ll Never Forget about this Conference

I teach drug information in our College of Pharmacy at Iowa, where active learning is widely used in the curriculum . One of the strategies I use to kick off discussions is to ask the following 3-2-1 questions: 1) three things you learned, 2) two things that surprised you, and 3) one thing that you’ll never forget.

So I asked some of my friends/colleagues to answer Question #3. Kelly Thormodson, who is the Assistant Director at the Harley E. French Library of the Health Sciences in the University of North Dakota, told me during a break that it would be the panel discussion on Tobacco, Meth and Mountain Dew: Oral Health in Appalachia. It made her wonder how North Dakota is meeting the oral health care needs of the Native American population there especially considering the fact that there are no dental schools in the state. Coincidentally, this panel discussion is also what stuck with my roommate, Amy Blevins, also at the University of Iowa. Amy felt when we talk about health care gaps, we need to take into account the huge amount of debts many health care professionals have after receiving their education and training and think about what can be done.

I feel the 3-2-1 questions worked well in starting conversations at conferences just as well as starting classroom discussions among my pharmacy students. Thank you, Kelly and Amy, for sharing your thoughts!

From a LIS Student Perspective

Hello, I’m Don Pearson from Columbus, Ohio. I am currently working at Mount Carmel Health Sciences Library which serves the Mount Carmel Health System as well as Mount Carmel College of Nursing. I’m working as a Library Technology Specialist because of my years of experience in computers, dating back to the 1980s, but I am also about halfway done with a library degree at Kent State University.

I’ve been to a few medical and academic library conferences over the the last three years, and I’ve been tasked with writing a little about the Midwest MLA 2015 Conference, which is ongoing as I write this.

As I’m finding, conferences such as this one are invaluable resources for networking, learning, exploring a new city and making new friends of people who had only been an email exchange or a web presence before. Midwest MLA 2015 is no exception to this rule. In a twenty four hour period, I have already attended a class on Technology Trends given by Melissa De Santis and Gabe Rios, made the acquaintance of many new and fascinating medical librarians and explored a few square blocks of Looeyville!

File_000

(Melissa and Gabe demonstrating Google Cardboard an example of affordable virtual reality)

I’ll be making a series of posts about the individual sessions and impressions they’ve made on me.  I hope everyone is having as great an experience as I’m having. I’m also taking some snapshots to post for the conference (with Claire’s enthusiastic suggestions factored in!) They’ll be posted on the conference flickr site, and here: https://www.flickr.com/gp/135656686@N02/j6v910

Enjoy Louisville, everyone!

Campfire Conversation: AHIP

A new program of this year’s meeting was Campfire Conversations. I attended the one on AHIP moderated by Jolene Miller, Director of Mulford Health Science Library, University of Teledo.  AHIP stands for Academy Of Health Information Professionals.  It is Medical Library Association’s (MLA’s) credentialing program established in 1989. It is a peer-reviewed professional development and career recognition program. Jolene said having AHIP after one’s name is often a conversation starter, and the term peer-review resonates with faculty.

AHIP is often listed as a preferred item in job openings. So being an AHIP member could give one an edge in the job market. There are five membership levels: Provisional Member Level, Member Level, Senior Member Level, Distinguished Member Level, and Emeritus Member Level. Application fees varies depending on the membership level. See more information on the application process on MLA website.

Decisions about AHIP applications are made by the MLA Credentialing Committee. Jolene served on the committee for several years. She offered the following advice for those who are considering becoming AHIP members.

  • Get into the habit of regularly documenting your professional development and continue education. This can be as simple as a folder on your computer or a physical paper folder.
  • Document more points than needed.
  • Visit MLA website regularly to keep current with changes on points and documentation.

Which Campfire Conversation did you attend? Share with us in the comments area.

Programs on data and systematic reviews

Betsy Humphreys, Deputy Director of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, mentioned two departure points for health sciences librarians: providing data management training for researchers and conducting literature searches to ­­­produce evidence needed to improve quality of care. I’d like to highlight some of the meeting programs on these two areas. Make sure to check out those that are upcoming. Feel free to leave a comment if I missed anything.

  • Saturday CE Class: Informatics for Librarians: Peeling the Onion
  • Saturday Class: Introduction to Translational Bioinformatics
  • Sunday Paper: Creating a Plan to Formalize a Systematic Review Program. 2:54pm at Van Goh-Remington
  • Tuesday CE Class: Systematic Reviews: Getting Started

Stay fit in Bismarck

Yes, Eric Rumsey, Jen Deberg, and I drove from Iowa City, IA to Bismarck, ND. Thirteen hours on the road. That’s how committed we are to Midwest. We also had healthy meals on the road because we are big on nutrition. Be sure to look for Eric Rumsey in the poster session for a poster he coauthored with Jen Deberg and Janna Lawrence.

ia to bis
Today we needed some stretching. Here is what we’ve explored so far:
The Fitness center and the pool are both located on the 2nd floor, which is where the conference is held. You can get in to the pool area, but you need to get a different card from the desk to access the fitness center. Jen liked the fitness center but commented on the lack of upper extremities equipment and therapy balls. Note that  Jen was an Occupational Therapist for many years before becoming a librarian. Look for her poster on history of evidence based nursing. No comments on the pool itself, but I did yoga at a corner in this area since I did not find a space in the fitness center.

fitness centerpool

The registration desk is also located on the 2nd floor, where you will be greeted by Dawn Hackman and Mary Markland. Remember to pick up some awesome goodies there. I love nuts. Come to my presentation tomorrow afternoon and see why.

Registration desk goodies

Something New at Midwest Chapter

Who’s excited about the Midwest Chapter meeting? It is only 10 days away!

This year, we are trying something new at Midwest Chapter. Along the same lies as the Roundtable Luncheon at MLA annual meetings, we are going to have Campfire Conversations! From 4-5pm on Sunday Oct 12th (immediately following the paper presentations) we will offer the chance for you to join a campfire and talk with your colleagues on a designated topic. Each campfire will have a moderator to get the conversation going and keep it on topic. Listed below are the topics and moderators for the event.

Join us for the Campfire Conversations and talk about “hot” topics and enjoy “s’more” networking with your peers. (Puns totally and completely intended.)

TOPIC: AHIP –  Moderated by Jolene Miller

TOPIC: New and emerging roles for medical librarians  – Moderated by Doreen Roberts

TOPIC: Advocacy and promotion – Moderated by Kelly Thormodson

TOPIC: Future of libraries and embedded librarianship – Moderated by Michel Atlas

TOPIC: Working with nurses and nursing students – Moderated by Liz Weinfurter

TOPIC: New to the profession / Resume recommendations – Moderated by Janna Lawrence

Midwest Chapter Annual Meeting is Eco-friendly

The Planning Committee for the Midwest chapter meeting has decided to GO GREEN!

What does this mean for you?  It means we will have a one sheet printed/abbreviated program on-hand in Bismarck for everyone, but the full program is online only.  Signage on all the doors, you can’t possibly get lost.  A list of stupendous restaurants at the registration table.  And of course ALL of this information on our conference website!  But we are keeping the paper distribution to a minimum.  Your name tag and 1 piece of paper.  That is all you get!

Midwest Conference Website

What else does this mean?  It means no conference bag.  However, there is the incentive to bring your own bag!  In fact…we will be giving a prize to the person brings the oldest MLA or Midwest Chapter conference bag to use in Bismarck.  Make sure if you think you have the oldest bag you find Mary Markland, Ann Pederson or Kelly Thormodson so they can take your picture with your bag.  The winner will be announced at lunch on Monday, October 13th.

Finally, just a reminder, casual dress for this conference.  We are having a western theme party on Saturday night for the opening reception so feel free to wear your boots or your hat or your custom square-dancing attire just be ready to swing your partner if need be.

See you soon!

Fashion Police at Midwest Chapter meeting

Hi all

I have been asked, in honor of Joan Rivers, to explain the fashion expected for the 2014 Midwest Chapter Conference in Bismarck, ND. The theme is “Come West and Explore.”

Saturday night will be a western theme for our opening reception, so bring your denim, plaid, cowboy hats and boots.  Example:

Cowgirl

lbd

Even for the rest of the conference, think comfort and casual….jeans are fine. Even if you are presenting a paper or poster no one will hold it against you if you dress down.

casual (1)

suit

Get the picture?

See you in Bismarck!!!!!!!!!