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SWON News: SWON Visits

SWON Visits - Gateway Community & Technical College

Monday, August 5, 2013  
Posted by: Melanie
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Driggers, Interim Head of the Libraries at Gateway Community & Technical College, wears a lot of hats. But this is not new to her, nor is it bothersome.  Kathy feels that learning new things, doing things in better ways, keeps life interesting and exciting. She and I recently met on the Edgewood Campus and discussed the re-accreditation process (successfully completed, of course), her new approach to information literacy instruction, the collection development approval process, the libraries' student worker projects, and the necessary eco-system of regional library systems.

As with so many of our community colleges, Gateway depends upon the collections held in public libraries and academic collections held regionally.  This allows Gateway to focus their materials budget on only those additional, highly specialized materials (physical or electronic) that their students need for each program.  Library staff work very hard with faculty to review collection development lists and then check with local public libraries' catalogs, ensuring coverage, without duplication.  This kind of work, while time consuming, has far-reaching impact, as it contributes to keeping down the cost of tuition, keeping post-secondary education at Gateway extremely affordable.

Kathy's latest approach to information literacy instruction is all business.  She and the rest of the staff, give hundreds of presentations each semester, with "no fluff, no fillers." They don't exceed 20 minutes, which makes it easier for the faculty to give them precious class time. Kathy sends out notices about their availability to the Division Heads each semester and she often attends Division-level meetings to talk briefly about the importance of information literacy for all students.  The degree of penetration Kathy has achieved in information literacy instruction is noteworthy. She attributes their results to getting in at the right level, persistence, and making it easy for faculty to say 'yes.'

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