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Archive for September, 2012

NAHSL Conference in Vermont

Monday, September 24th, 2012

Join your colleagues at the NAHSL Annual Conference in Woodstock, VT. The last NAHSL Conference in Woodstock, VT was fantastic. This year’s theme, “Reading Between the Lines” brings you speakers including Gary Schwitzer of HealthNewsReview, as well as Steve Woloshin & Laura Schwarz, co-directors of the Center for Medicine and the Media at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice. And, Chris Bohjalian, New York Times bestselling author of Midwives.

Register by Sept 28th to get the early rate.

Outside the Box: Innovation and the Library

Monday, September 24th, 2012

[Announcement from Dartmouth]

Outside the Box: Innovation and the Library
Dartmouth Biomedical Libraries’ October Conference for New England academic librarians

This year’s conference theme focuses on innovation. Our keynote speaker is Ron Adner, author of The Wide Lens: A New Strategy for Innovation and Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Other presentations will showcase ways that libraries have introduced innovative planning, practices, and services.

Date: Friday, October 19, 2012
Location: Alumni Hall in the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth College
Registration fee: $85 (includes Continental Breakfast and Lunch and a copy of The Wide Lens: A New Strategy for Innovation)

Please register early to avoid disappointment; attendance is capped at 120.

To register and for more information, including theprogram, please visit the conference web site at

If you have a question about registration, please contact Peggy Sleeth at or (603) 650-1635.

Focused Outreach Vingette

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

Holyoke Community College HOSA MedlinePlus Train-the-Trainer

Focused Outreach is NN/LM NER’s approach to reach underserved areas experiencing high rates of health disparities in New England with National Library of Medicine services and resources. Holyoke, Massachusetts was the urban area for the Focused Health Information Outreach initiative during year one (May 2011-May 2012). The following is a story of NN/LM NER’s partnership with the Holyoke Community College HOSA.

In the spring of 2012, NER collaborated with the Holyoke Community College Health Occupations Student Association to train students on how to teach MedlinePlus. The evolution of this collaboration began when the Manager of Workforce Development for the Massachusetts Area Health Education Center’s (AHEC) introduced NN/LM NER’s Consumer Health Coordinator to the Springfield Technical Community College Workforce Stat Coordinator. NN/LM NER met several times with the Workforce Stat coordinator to strategize ways to work together.

NER provided two MedlinePlus trainings for Holyoke Community College’s HOSA (Health Occupations Student Associations) chapter. The first training was a hands-on tour of MedlinePlus.  For the second training, NER developed materials for the HOSA students to teach their own MedlinePlus presentations in a computer lab.  The students had the opportunity to practice presenting parts of the presentation during this training.

HOSA students presented in pairs for five separate Medical Day Encounters attended by local health school students interested in pursuing a health degree at the community college.  The five students trained by the NER taught MedlinePlus to 48 high school students. The HOSA presentation for Medical Day Encounters included all examples on diabetes, which was the theme for the Medical Encounters.

In the post-assessment, 95% of the high school students said the class improved their ability to find information they could trust on the internet. Seventy nine percent said they would be likely to use MedlinePlus in the future. Eighty percent of students were very likely or somewhat likely to tell others about the Web sites discussed in the class.

HOSA students expressed their appreciation for the opportunity to be part of the MedlinePlus Train-the-Trainer in the wrap up assessments. One student wrote, “I learned a lot about the reliability of MedlinePlus, which I am definitely able to use for school and everyday life. It was a great experience teaching others how to use MedlinePlus.” Another student wrote, “I benefitted from participating in the HOSA MedlinePlus Train-the-Trainer, because I was able to work through my fear of public speaking. Also, teaching the students helped me to reinforce what I learned from the training I received from Michelle.”

The HOSA project helped connect NN/LM NER with the Holyoke Community College Library. NER staff taught a MedlinePlus class for the Foundations of Health Program in the library’s computer lab. Also, librarians at the community college attended a PubMed training. Focused Outreach is helping NER make connections with a variety of libraries, health information providers and agencies. Stay tuned for more about our Focused Health Information Outreach.

A Time of Transition

Monday, September 10th, 2012

Many of you have probably heard by now that Javier resigned as Associate Director at the end of August. Javier has done a wonderful job guiding and leading the NN/LM NER office. He will be missed by us all and I know he will be successful as he explores new educational and career opportunities. I have been asked to serve as Interim Associate Director throughout this transition period. For those of you who are not familiar with my background, I started at the Lamar Soutter Library in 1999 as a systems librarian. Since that time I have assumed various management positions over the years with increasing oversight of personnel , budget,  library operations and technology projects and am currently serving as the Associate Director for Community, Technology, and Global Relations. Some of my most recent projects have included launching the institutional repository, data management projects, collection management, and space planning. I have also served on local, regional and national committees within  MLA and NAHSL and been active in consortia activities, such as the Boston Library Consortium.

It will take me some time to get up to speed on all the activities and procedures associated with daily operations of the regional office. My “To Do” list seems to be growing by the minute. At the top of this list is to hire an outreach coordinator. The region has been without an outreach coordinator since December 2011. We are in the process of interviewing candidates and hope to have someone on board by the NAHSL conference in October. I am also charged with soliciting proposals for express awards, so if you have any ideas for projects that can be completed by April 30, 2013 please contact me. You will also see shortly the Request for Proposals for sub-contacts and awards to be included in our year 3 budget. So if you have an idea but are not ready to get it started right now watch for this announcement late September/early October.

We also have a few meeting coming up in which the NER will be providing updates.  September 28th will be a Resource Library Directors meeting and November 30th will be the Regional Advisory Committee Meeting. There will also be an update of NER activities at the NAHSL Board Meeting at the Annual Meeting, and finally, in the planning phases is a meeting for Community of Interest leaders. No date has been set for this as of yet, but it’s on the “To Do” list.

I look forward to meeting and working with all of you in the coming months.

Mary Piorun, MSLS, MBA
Interim Associate Director
p) 508/856-2223

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