October 8, 2014

Workshop: Diversity is Everybody's Everyday Work: An Action Plan

I will be presenting at the Minnesota Library Association Conference today, October 8, 2014 from 1:30-2:30pm with two of my University of Minnesota colleagues, Scott Marsalis and Todd Fenton.


Diversity is Everybody's Everyday Work: An Action Plan
Jody Gray, Scott Marsalis, Todd Fenton
Wednesday, October 8, 1:30-2:30pm
Verizon Wireless Center, Room 243
Public Services|Professional Development
This session will discuss the successful methods University of Minnesota's Diversity Outreach Collaborative used to build leadership in the area of diversity at all levels of the Libraries, based upon the principle that "Diversity is Everyone's Everyday Work."  The Collaborative will share the strategies they have learned that will help attendees develop educational programs for their staff; create and grow their libraries' diversity committees; encourage collaboration with departmental, institutional and community partners; and build leadership skills libraries-wide.


November 1, 2013

American Indian Heritage Month

November 1st marks the beginning of American Indian Heritage Month.  Officially, it's Native American Heritage Month, but at the U of MN the department is called American Indian Studies, so that is the term that I use.  I have set up a display showcasing our faculty publications and the American Indian Cultural House Film Series that the library partners with.  We work with the students involved in the Cultural House to choose films from our collections and each event is hosted by them.  It is meant to give first year students some opportunity to learn how to organize and lead an event on campus.  

I decided to put up an exhibit in one of our library spaces for this month.  I wanted to highlight our faculty publications and film collections.  My student worker created Pinterest Boards.


Follow American Indian Faculty Publications by University of Minnesota Libraries on Pinterest Follow American Indian Films Collection by University of Minnesota Libraries on Pinterest

October 25, 2013

Rocking Diversity Recap

A few weeks ago, I was on a panel for the Minnesota Library Association Annual Conference.  The panel was called "Rocking Diversity: Best Models and Practices for Competencies."  The panel was organized by the current leadership of the Diversity Outreach Round Table (DORT), Laura Murlock (Office Manager, St. Catherine University MLIS Program) and Amelia Snetting (Student, St. Catherine University).

I was so pleased see that our room was full.  My co-panelists were representing their amazing work at the St. Paul Public and Hennepin County Libraries.

Regina Harris, Rice Lake Branch Manager, St. Paul Public Library

Abdirahman Mukhtar, Youth Learning and Literacy Staff Member, HCL 

Eric Yang, Sunray Public Library Associate, SPPL

It's always really energizing to do presentations or panels about the work that I do.  It is easy to get lost in the day to day sometimes, but when you get to step back and reflect on what you have done, it makes it worthwhile.  It is a reminder of how important reflection is.

I wanted to share the handout that was shared at the panel.  And I always love to hear what others are doing at their libraries.

http://www.mnlibraryassociation.org/sites/default/files/events/conf2013/handouts/2F.pdf

September 3, 2013

Park Avenue and Miss Representation

I spent part of my Labor Day weekend recovering from a week's worth of orientations and watching lots of Netflix.  I saw plenty of Batman Beyond and Trailer Park Boys, but  I also took the time to watch two documentaries that had been on my list for awhile: Miss Representation and Park Avenue.

Miss Representation is a 2011 film by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, an actress and film maker, who sets up this documentary as an internal dialogue about the upcoming birth of her daughter and how she is worried about the way media portrays women and diminishes their intelligence and power.  She interviews young high school students (male and female) along with congress women and men, authors, college professors, journalists and well known activists.  It is a very smart and engaging documentary.  There is a companion website www.missrepresentation.org that provides educational materials and continues the discussion of women's representation in media.





The second documentary I watched was Park Avenue: Money, Power, & the American DreamAlex Gibney (ENRON: The Smartest Guys in the Room) directs this look at the extreme gap in wealth and education that represented on Park Avenue as it is the home to the most billionaires in America in Manhattan and extends to the South Bronx, one of the poorest congressional districts in the United States.

Gibney does a good job of demonstrating the massive wealth and powerful influence on politics that the residents of 740 Park Avenue, Manhattan have.  I felt it lacked a real comparison to life in South Bronx.  It's presented as a comparison, but except for a few statistics, there was no face of the South Bronx.  There's no specific address or person that Gibney explores; he feels it's just enough to say, "and over here...they are poor."  That's not to say that the film is not effective.  It certainly is eye opening to think about how much of an impact these few men have on all of our lives through governmental policies.





I think both are worth looking at and certainly bring up some interesting frames for how we talk about gender and economic equality.

August 17, 2013

Presentation: Diversity as a Core Value in Academic Libraries

I ran across this nice presentation from Framingham State University.  It nicely lays out a process for outreach to several different communities.  

http://www.slideshare.net/vmg569/diversity-as-a-core-value-in-academic-libraries

August 12, 2013

Welcome to the new blog!

I have decided to try a new format for my Diversity Resources for Academic Libraries Blog.  The old blog is still at blog.lib.umn.edu/grayjl/diversitylibraries.  Any new posts or resources will be listed here.  Thank you for your patience while I make this transition.