MPDR Survey

NMRT and Membership, Promotion, Diversity, and Recruitment Committee are interesting in knowing how we are doing! We have created a brief survey asking for feedback on our past year’s programs, our communication methods, and the diversity & inclusion initiatives within NMRT. Your information and feedback will be instrumental not only for analytical purposes but will help NMRT to ensure that our roundtable is meeting the needs of its members, and help us identify ways in which we can improve. If you have a few minutes, it would be greatly appreciated if you could please consider taking our survey about your experience with NMRT. The survey is available at

For those of you who have dropped or discontinued your membership with NMRT. We have a separate survey for you, and are interested in why you decided to leave NMRT. Former member feedback will help NMRT progress the quality of our programs, and services for future and current members. This survey can be accessed here

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May NMRT Discussion Summary for Collaboration and Libraries

By: Carrie Fishner

For the May online NMRT discussion, we posed the topic of “Collaboration: how can libraries collaborate or partner with other entities to provide programming and/or services”. The discussion led to many great examples of what different types of libraries have tried, and what worked well. We did not get into what did not work, but that might be a great future discussion topic.

Some of the examples that participants shared were as follows (sorted by public/academic):

  • Mental health screenings with Campus Health Services/Counseling
  • Therapy animal visits in the library with Counseling/Health services and/or Vet Sci programs
  • Creating campus depositories for things such as archiving materials, creating permanent digital links for student work/projects, and IR information
  • Libraries as space – art displays working with art faculty and clubs


  • Working with public and academic libraries to do join programs; working to have similar themes to programs in both locations
  • Digitizing public library resources using the campus resources
  • Libraries as space for programs and meetings with outside constituents of the community

Some of the main takeaways from last month’s discussion were that you have to be open to trying new things. Do not discount an idea just because it has not been done that way before! Reach out and ask if someone is willing to work with you; the worst that can happen is they will say no, the best outcome is that they will be excited to collaborate with you and this will create a stronger relationship going forward. Just by asking, you may find someone who has great ideas, but needed help with the resources to make them happen. Seeing libraries collaborate with other groups and organizations (both academic and public) helps to show how relevant libraries are, and how we are a bridge for ideas across disciplines.

Please, take a look at the NMRT listserv for the full emails which detail some of the examples given above. We hope to hear from you in our next online discussion!

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Endnotes 2017

The 2017 volume of Endnotes: The Journal of the New Members Round Table is now available, featuring peer-reviewed articles and books reviews written by NMRT members like you.

Interested in writing for Endnotes? Our journal guidelines outline what you need to know, and you can always email the editor(s) at with questions and/or article ideas. 
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MPDR Spotlight: Annie Pho

Annie Pho currently works as the Inquiry and Instruction Librarian for Peer Services and Powell Public Programs at UCLA Library. Annie was a managing editor of the Hack Library School Blog, and currently serves as an editor for In the Library With the Lead Pipe team.

What inspired you to be a part of NMRT?

At my very first ALA, I attended a NMRT first time attendee orientation where I met some other library professionals who are now my very good friends. As I was job searching and just starting out in the profession, someone recommended that I join NMRT and sign up for some committees. I liked that it was a round table that was for early-career librarians and had mentoring programs and conference panels geared towards new professionals.

How long were you involved with NMRT?

I was involved with NMRT for about 5 years before I moved into other areas of the professional organization.

How has NMRT helped you grow professionally?

NMRT has quite a bit of conference programming that is geared for new professionals, like networking happy hours, first-time conference attendee orientation, and opportunities to get involved. Through working on NMRT committees and attending NMRT events, I made a lot of friends and got experience working on national level committees. ALA is a pretty large organization, so it’s nice to get started with just one of the smaller subsections of it. As it turns out, a lot of being an academic librarian means working on committees so ALA committee work helped me manage those expectations.

How has your involvement with NMRT impacted your involvement with ALA?

NMRT was really my first experience with working on ALA committees and from there I was able to explore the various divisions to find other organizations that aligned with my interests and my job. When I was earlier in my career, I was really enthusiastic about trying out all the things; but now that I have worked on various committees, I have learned to take it a little easy on the professional service.

What aspects of NMRT would you recommend to our members and why?

If you’re just starting out in the profession and want to meet other library professionals from across the country, I would recommend the NMRT mentoring program. It’s a good way to get good advice on job searching, career stuff, and more. Plus it’s free and doesn’t require any conference attendance. If you end up going to ALA Annual, the new member happy hours are also a fun way to meet other people.

Do you have any additional advice for our members about getting involved with NMRT and ALA?

My advice would be to ask someone who is involved with NMRT about some of the programs that they offer I think there’s actually a few different things that NMRT but no one knows about because the information is buried somewhere in ALA Connect. I hesitate to encourage new professionals (especially those who are job searching) to sign up for committee work because it’s free labor and unpaid; however, NMRT does guarantee committee appointments for anyone who signs up. So if that’s something you are curious about, that’s another option. Many of those committees meet online and don’t require conference attendance.

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2017 Student Chapter of the Year Award Winner

The New Members Round Table (NMRT) and the American Library Association (ALA) Membership Committee wish to congratulate the ALA Student Chapter at Emporia State University as the winner of the 2017 ALA Student Chapter of the Year Award.

2017 Winner

Emporia State University

This year’s Student Chapter of the Year Award goes to Emporia State University. This is the first time Emporia State University has received the award. This year’s Student Chapter of the Year Award Committee praised the chapter’s ability to reach members in person and virtually across wide geographic distances. In addition, the chapter grew in the preceding year and undertook an impressive documentation initiative to build up institutional memory for future years.

2017 Runner Up

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

The runner-up of this year’s award is the ALA Student Chapter at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The committee was especially impressed with the level of student engagement in the chapter’s work, as evidenced by its many sub-committees and volume of on campus events and activities.

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Meet the New NMRT Board Members

July 1, 2017 begins the 2017-2018 NMRT Executive Board Term, including the newly elected officers to the NMRT Executive Board. The newly elected members are…

Vice-President/President-Elect – Nicole Spoor

Nicole Spoor is the Business Librarian at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She currently serves as the Leadership Development Director for ALA New Members Round Table and is a doctoral student in educational leadership.

Secretary – Melanie Kowalski

Melanie Kowalski is the Copyright & Scholarly Communications Librarian at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. She currently serves as the Chair of the NMRT Communications Committee.

Leadership Development Director – Veronica Leigh Milliner

Veronica Leigh Milliner works as an Outreach Librarian at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania. She currently serves as Co-Chair of the NMRT Orientation Committee.

A warm congratulations and welcome to our new officers!





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Notes from the President: So long, Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, Adieu

Adieu, Adieu, to you and you and you!

Now that the song is stuck in your head (#sorrynotsorry), it is time for me to say goodbye to you as your NMRT President.   It’s been an interesting and successful year for our roundtable.  We planned many wonderful programs and social events, including what may have been the most successful Annual Conference Orientation in years with nearly 300 attendees, standing room only!   We also put forth a great slate of candidates for election to our NMRT board, recognized some of the next generation of library leadership with our awards, and ensured we met all our committee work goals.  To use a phrase we use at my company, NMRT certainly “executed superbly” this year!

All that success is thanks to all the hard work of our committees. Sometimes our committee work is not all that glamorous or fun, but it is essential.  I would like to personally thank all our committee chairs and committees for their hard work, dedication, and sense of fun that they brought to the roundtable this year.  You are what makes ALA and NMRT work!    If you want to be a part of this grand tradition, please be sure to complete our NMRT Committee Form – Vice President/President-Elect Mandi Goodsett will continue to make appointments throughout the summer. (That goes for committee members from this past year, too – if you want to be re-appointed, you also need to complete the form!)

In addition to our committees, I’ve been blessed with a wonderful board with the same traits – dedication, persistence, intelligence, and passion.  Being President of anything is a tough job, and no one who is successful at it does it alone – it requires a team. First, I would like to thank Kirby McCurtis for being a great consultant in her role as Past President, a role I’m looking forward to having in a few days!  While all of our Board Members hold a special place in my heart, I’d like to particularly acknowledge and thank for their service our Board Members who are stepping down at the end of this year:

  • Kirby McCurtis, Past President
  • Nicole Lamoreaux, Secretary
  • Easter DiGangi, Treasurer
  • Elizabeth A. M. Howard, Parliamentarian

I’m also thrilled to see our new board members in place for 2017-2018, including a board member moving on up to a new role!

  • Nicole Spoor, Vice President/President Elect (our former Leadership Development Director – the same path I took on the NMRT Board!)
  • Veronica Leigh Milliner, Leadership Development Director
  • Melanie Kowalski, Secretary

With Mandi’s leadership, I can and will expect great things from our board for the coming year.   Mandi’s presidential theme is “You Belong Here” and it’s a perfect theme for NMRT, as we are the place to ensure that new members belong in the vast network that is ALA.

As we close out this year, I would like to leave you with two pieces of advice that I received recently from an actor friend of mine that are guiding me forward in all aspects of my life. (If you were at any NMRT event where I spoke, you probably heard these, but they bear repeating):

  • You gotta hustle. (That means you too, introverts.)  You have to put yourself out there, whether it be attending a conference, asking for committee work, or offering to collaborate on a paper/project.   And promote your own work as well!  Nothing comes from standing on the side.  So hustle hard and often – because not everything will stick on the first try.  To use my actor pal as an example, it took him 20+ years of theater and voiceover work to finally land a part of a national TV show this year (incidentally, playing an archivist).  While the show was unfortunately canceled, he got the recognition and the confidence boost to keep going.  Persistence pays off!
  • Put good out into the world, and good will come back to you.  When you speak out against something, do it with kindness and integrity.  (The geeks in the room will probably recognize this as Wheaton’s Law.)  Lift up people along the way – support your colleagues, mentor those below you.

Those who know me know I am a big fan of the musical Hamilton, and had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to finally see it while in Chicago for Annual Conference.   One of the lyrics that has stuck with me since then has been from the song The Room Where It Happens  – “God help and forgive me, I wanna build something that’s gonna outlive me.”  Your contributions to NMRT are what will outlive you.  NMRT is your legacy.

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MPDR Spotlight: Ariana Santiago

Ariana Santiago is the Instruction Librarian at the University of Houston Libraries. She is the 2016-18 Outreach Director of the New Members Round Table, and is a 2017 ALA Emerging Leader.

What inspired you to be a part of NMRT?

I was really drawn in by the name of the round table, and that it is for “new members.” It’s great that ALA has divisions and round tables for so many different specializations and interests. However, at the time I joined ALA, I wasn’t sure what direction I would go in my career or which units of ALA would be most beneficial for me. I knew that in the New Members Round Table, I would at least find other newbies like me!

How long were you involved with NMRT?

I joined ALA and NMRT in 2012, when I was towards the end of my library school program. So about five years.

How has NMRT helped you grow professionally?

I’ve been fortunate to be able to attend a few ALA Conferences, where NMRT hosts several programs and services. One time I got my resume reviewed at the NMRT Resume Review Service – the reviewer gave me some really great advice about how to adapt my CV for the specific job I was applying for (and yes, I got the job!). Other NMRT conference programs, such as the Annual Social or Conference Orientation, have been fun ways to meet people in all types of libraries.

How has your involvement with NMRT impacted your involvement with ALA?

Getting involved in NMRT was my first exposure to doing professional service. The NMRT Handbook Committee was my very first committee appointment – it was a very minimal time investment for me, yet I still learned a lot about committee-work and the round table itself. Since then, I have stayed involved in NMRT, serving on and chairing several committees. Additionally, gaining that professional service experience led me to seek active involvement in other areas of ALA, such as the ACRL Instruction Section.

NMRT has had a positive impact on my involvement in ALA, however, I will caution that it’s also important to know your limits and be realistic about the amount of professional service you can do. I have realized at times that I had too many professional commitments – don’t try to take on too much!

What aspects of NMRT would you recommend to our members and why?

Earlier I mentioned the Resume Review Service, which is a fantastic service available at ALA Midwinter and Annual conferences. However, people may not know that the Resume Review Service is also offered online via email all year round. I recommend this because it’s so helpful to have someone give feedback on your resume, but a lot of people aren’t able to travel to conferences for the in-person review. NMRT also has an email list-serv, which I recommend because it’s a good way to get updates on NMRT, learn about job openings, and keep up on relevant discussions within the profession.

Do you have any additional advice for our members about getting involved with NMRT and ALA?

It’s actually pretty easy to get involved in NMRT! A call for volunteers goes out around springtime for committee appointments, and no previous experience is required. In general, joining list-servs in your areas of interest and following relevant social media accounts is a good way to keep an eye out for opportunities (including scholarships and professional development). Also, if you have questions about getting involved in a certain area of ALA, try asking around within NMRT – there are people with experience in all kinds of librarianship that could help answer your questions.




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Reminder: Facebook Live ALA Annual Conference Orientation Q & A

Don’t forget tomorrow June 23rd, at 1:45 PM CST NMRT goes LIVE with our Orientation Conference panelists. They’re looking forward to answering your questions about anything ALA, NMRT, or the Annual Conference.

The event will be accessible through the official ALA Facebook page,

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NMRT Facebook Live Event!

Tune in June 23rd at 1:45 CST for our ALA Annual Conference Orientation Live Q&A. During this time, virtual attendees are encouraged to ask our panelists any questions they may have regarding ALA, NMRT, or the Annual Conference.

Link to the event will be posted shortly before the event goes live.

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