Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Applications Open for UK Libraries 2017 Alternative Textbook Grant Program

UK Libraries is launching a second round of the Alternative Textbook Grant Program to encourage UK faculty to adopt peer-reviewed open access alternative textbooks or to create original learning materials for their courses. Faculty may apply for one of 10 grants of up to $1,500 each to implement any curriculum change required for the use of alternative textbooks. 

“The favorable feedback to the first round of the program demonstrates that faculty realize the benefits and opportunities alternative textbooks bring to teaching and learning,” says Mary Beth Thomson, UK Libraries senior associate dean. “We are delighted to continue our support for faculty’s adoption and creation of alternative textbooks.” 

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that prices for college textbooks increased by 88% between 2006 and 2016. Studies indicate that the financial burden of textbooks negatively impacts student success by limiting students’ access to essential learning resources.  Alternative textbooks present a proven solution to the prohibitive prices of traditional textbooks and allow faculty to customize course content in a timely and innovative manner. 

Current UK faculty teaching a course in academic year 2017-18 using a commercial textbook are eligible to apply for one of the 10 grants. UK Libraries’ academic liaisons can provide faculty with assistance in identifying existing alternative textbooks and UK Libraries’ licensed information resources that are appropriate substitutes for traditional textbooks. 

Proposals must be submitted via the program’s online form.  Selection criteria include the strength of a statement of concern, estimated potential savings by students in the course, ability to use the alternative textbook in academic year 2017-18, and reusability beyond the initial semester.  Successful applicants will be notified in Spring 2017.  

Each grant recipient is required to submit a report describing the alternative textbook, the number of students impacted, estimated student savings, and an evaluation of the experience with the program.  Outcomes of the program will be shared with the UK community. 

The proposal submission deadline is December 23, 2016.  For more information about the Alternative Textbook Grant Program, please contact Adrian Ho, UK Libraries director of digital scholarship or Mary Beth Thomson, UK Libraries senior associate dean.

United Way donations matter

Sherree Osborne, UK Libraries 2016 United Way Chair, reports we are in the middle of the 31-day campaign, and a total of $1,740 has been donated. If you have not made a donation, please consider doing so and helping UK Libraries reach our reach our $5,000 goal. Donations can be made online or by printing a pledge form and forwarding to Sherree Osborne, 1-85 W. T. Young Library.  Here is the link with more information on making your pledge www.uky.edu/uw/make-pledge.  

United Way focuses on four key pillars of success:
              Basic Needs - Over 21,000 kids live at or near poverty;
              School Readiness - One in two students are not ready to enter kindergarten on the first day of school;
              Student Success - Two out of five high school grads are not ready for college or a career;
              Financial Stability - Over 50,000 families struggle to make ends meet.

To learn more about how the United Way touches our community and who supports the United Way, visit www.uwbg.org. Volunteering is another way to support the United Way. To learn more about how you can become a volunteer, call 2 1 1 or email volunteer@uwbg.org

“Tales of Kentucky Ghosts” in paperback just in time for Halloween

Tales of the supernatural have pervaded every culture across the globe, because as humans, we have a fascination with the mysteries of death and what lies beyond. Though the supernatural is often met with skepticism, a good ghost story still causes you to take an extra look around the corner or get a little nervous when walking through a graveyard. Ghost stories do more than just scare you—they force you to question your own reality. But where do these stories come from? Thanks to the American South’s vibrant tradition in storytelling, southern lore is fraught with tales of long-dead relatives, vengeful haints, and mischievous spirits.

William Lynwood Montell’s “Tales of Kentucky Ghosts, now available in paperback, combines more than 270 stories collected from across the state. He combed through university archives and interviewed countless individuals to provide a comprehensive look at regional legend and lore. Although designed primarily to frighten and entertain readers, the stories are also valuable in preserving traditional beliefs and practices, as many have been passed down for generations. While conducting his research for this collection, he visited over seventy Kentucky counties, providing readers with a broad look at storytelling across the Bluegrass. When viewed as a whole, readers can see both the common trends present in the stories as well as their regional differences.

The stories range from scary to comical and come from all corners of the state. Clyde Childers of Lawrence County tells the tale of a murdered woman whose spirit possesses the power to change the course of a river, and Brandon Pierce of Bracken County recounts the story of a grandmother who was murdered by a group of children and now haunts a tunnel. On a more lighthearted note, Ralph Morris tells the story of his sister-in-law’s encounter with a “foot-tickling” ghost, and Danny R. Clark of Allen County describes his cousin’s experience with an elderly-looking spirit with an affinity for hats.

Montell’s extensive research has provided readers with a comprehensive look at Kentucky legend and the state’s rich oral history, presenting a rapid-fire sampling of some the best ghost stories the Commonwealth has to offer. “Tales of Kentucky Ghosts” is sure to both entertain and chill its readers while also allowing them to consider their own supernatural heritage.

William Lynwood Montell, professor emeritus of folk studies at Western Kentucky University, is the author or editor of more than 20 books, including “Ghosts across Kentucky, Haunted Houses and Family Ghosts of Kentucky,” and “Tales from Kentucky Funeral Homes.”

Science and Engineering Library holds a Halloween selfie station competition

The Science and Engineering Library is holding a Halloween selfie station competition October 24 -31 in the new Collaboratory (213G). All faculty, staff and students are welcome to upload a “Spooktacular” selfie to the University of Kentucky Science and Engineering Library Facebook page. Also, everyone is invited to come by the library anytime during our operating hours (M-Th 7:45am-9pm, Fri until 4:30pm) to take your selfie using some available props. Costumes are highly encouraged, and a grand prize will be awarded for the most liked selfie!

Innovative Education students create Tolkien Middle-Earth-style UK map

Two Education students created a Tolkien Middle-Earth-style map of UK after they were challenged to find a use for a large bulletin board found in the Education Library. Senior Library Technician Emily Bayma-Santos asked students Madeline Tiemeyer and Hannah Meredith to come up with something to put on the eighteen-foot section that had been hidden behind unused shelving.

Madeline, a secondary English education senior, and Hannah, an early elementary education junior, suggested a map of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth that fit with the Education Library’s juvenile/young adult literature collection. 

According to Bayma-Santos, Scott Swift in Young Library’s mailroom suggested it be a map of UK. “Hannah did some of the planning and prep work but the art itself is solely Madeline’s, “ says Bayma-Santos. “It’s done in black sharpie and chalk on butcher paper and took her around eight hours.”

UK Libraries co-hosts reception for Common Reading Experience “Orphan Train” author

UK Libraries and the Office of New Student and Parent Programs co-hosted a reception in the WT Young Library Gallery for this year’s Common Reading Experience author, Christina Baker Kline. Kline, whose historical novel, “Orphan Train,” has been used in a number of university common reading programs across the country, also signed copies of the book and answered questions. Faculty from across campus who used “Orphan Train” in their classes and Libraries faculty and staff attended the reception.

Following the reception, Kline attended Peter Hesseldenz’ UK 101 class in WT Young where the students talked about the book. They had many questions for Kline, who answered them all in lively discussion. “Many of the students came away with a new appreciation of the book and of the writing process,” says Hesseldenz, Business and Economics Academic Liaison for UK Libraries.

“Orphan Train” tells the story of an Irish immigrant girl who is orphaned at the age of nine just before the Great Depression. She is sent to the Midwest on an “orphan train,” which was a well-meaning attempt to find homes for children who would have otherwise ended up living on the streets. While some children had good experiences, many were treated harshly and taken-in by families merely to provide farm labor. The book juxtaposes a modern-day story with the events that take place in the 1930’s and 40s.

UK Libraries welcomes diversity interns Javoughn Brown and Vaibhav Chitkara

Now in its third year, the UK Libraries Undergraduate Diversity Intern Program recently welcomed the 2016-2017 interns, Javoughn Brown and Vaibhav “Vibz” Chitkara. They are currently working in the WT Young Reference Department with supervisors Ruth Bryan and Peter Hesseldenz. The students will work on a variety of projects in different areas of UK Libraries throughout the rest of the school year focusing on exploring issues of diversity as they learn about the functions of an academic library.

Javoughn Brown is a sophomore from Louisville, Ky. majoring in psychology and minoring in sociology. When he finishes his undergraduate degree, he plans to attend graduate school in social work. Before coming to UK, he worked for a non-profit organization and has volunteered extensively in his community. Javoughn has an interest in visual arts and is a regular participant in a campus poetry workshop. 

Vaibhav “Vibz” Chitkara’s family is originally from India, and he has lived all over the world with his diplomat parents. Born in Tanzania, Vibz has also lived in New Delhi, Houston, and Belgrade.  He completed high school in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia before coming to UK. Vibz is a junior majoring in electrical engineering and computer engineering and serves as an international student ambassador. Last year, he was a member of the College of Engineering’s Solar Car Club.