Posts tagged - Saturday May 17

Opening of the Hall of Exhibits and Welcome Reception

Good morning medical librarians!

Last night from 5:30pm until 7:30pm the exhibit hall was filled with fellow medical librarians and exhibitors for the Welcome Reception and Opening of the Hall of Exhibits. As one of your 2014 Exhibit correspondents, I will focus this post mainly on the exhibit aspect of the Welcome Reception rather than the social aspect, although it was clear there was much socializing happening last night.

Word from the exhibitors has it that the reception was very well-attended and exhibitors received an impressive amount of traffic. Aside from the expected crowds near the food and wine stations, the largest crowds appeared around the Wolters Kluwer prize wheel (Wolters Kluwer booth #s are 522, 622, 626, and 628) the National Library of Medicine (NLM) booth (#326), and the McGraw-Hill booth (#532) due to the buzz surrounding the new ClinicalAccess resource. Stay tuned for an upcoming post about the McGraw-Hill booth!

As I walked around the exhibit hall I noticed several individuals wearing brightly-colored construction hats which are being worn by friendly members of the National Program Committee (NPC) and the Local Assistance Committee (LAC), to reflect the building theme of this conference “Building our Information Future”.

Be sure to thank the NPC and LAC members for all of their planning efforts for this year’s conference

Be sure to thank the NPC and LAC members for all of their planning efforts for this year’s conference

Stay tuned for an upcoming post about NLM (booth # 326) theater sessions, but first I encourage you to pick up a hot freebie before they run out:

Nifty History of Medicine Division drink coasters from NLM

Nifty History of Medicine Division drink coasters from NLM

And finally, be sure to stop by booth #522 to visit “ MLA’ 15 Austin, TX” to pick up brochures about Austin as well a cute guitar pin and learn about the upcoming 2015 “Librarians without Limits” conference.

MLA'15 in Austin, TX

MLA’15 in Austin, TX

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A Library Student at MLA ’14 – Pacing Myself

I have heard several of my medical librarian colleagues commenting on how it is necessary to pace yourself when attending the MLA Conference.

Yesterday I felt like I jumped into the deep end of the pool with a sink-or-swim attitude.  Today was no different, but I am learning to take the time to enjoy being here, while not being in a frenzy.  There is so much to see and do on the MLA Schedule and in Chicago, that it is tempting to try to do it all, see it all and understand it all.  Not possible.

Here’s my rule of thumb: when all three of your mobile devices shut down you should probably lie down too and take a rest while they are recharging.

When you wake up ask yourself what is possible to accomplish during MLA 14?  Here’s what I’m doing: making some connections, having some conversations, taking notes on Google Docs, gathering business cards and emails, and stopping by interesting Chicago places, if only for a moment.

Here’s my list of things that I’ve enjoyed so far, starting with a few tips on Chicago:

Food: I love Indian food and had a great lunch buffet at Gaylord Fine Indian Cuisine about a 20 minute walk north on Michigan Avenue at Walton Street.  The food was well done and there were plenty of vegetarian options.  About 10 people waited on me, but the buffet was only $13.95.  For dessert they had the best gulab jamun I have ever tasted.

Sightseeing:  My nephew who lives here in downtown Chicago said that if you want to view the city from the Hancock Tower, it is a better deal to go to the Signature Lounge on the 95th floor and buy a $10 drink than to pay the same money to go to the observation deck.  We went there last night and the views were awesome, as well as the Tanqueray and tonic!

If you find yourself up by Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine for a hands on CE class, stop by the Museum of Contemporary Art, just across the street.  Right now they have an exhibit of Zachary Cahill’s work which explores the “implications of art as a therapeutic exercise.”  I enjoyed a 30 minute art therapy session after my CE class this morning.

CE Courses:  Technology was the theme of my continuing education courses today.  At 7 am a group of MLA attendees gathered in the lobby and walked about 12 blocks (20 minutes) north along Michigan Avenue (not stopping to shop) to Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine.  There I attended CE202: Breaking an Electronic Health Record (EHR) System: a sandbox workshop by PJ Grier from NNLM/SEA.  Once again I was overwhelmed with excellent and idea-provoking information.  Wireless and personalized medicine (a la Dr. Eric Topol)?  The necessity of the librarian to advocate for a defined role in the Electronic Health Record? Meaningful Use 1, 2 and 3? HIMSS? Health Level Seven?  Took notes so I can read up on all this fascinating and important information!!!  Not to mention taking some time to explore a freely available sample EHR system in Practice Fusion.

Then a quick walk back to the Hyatt for CE501-Information at Your Fingertips: Tablet Technology by Emily Hurst of NNLM/SCR.  I did not know about all the mobile sites and mobile apps that the NLM makes available for us: Also going to spend some time looking at Bloomin’ Apps (iPad Apps to support Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy) and the Padagogy Wheel which “shows teachers that the pedagogy should drive the technology and not the other way around.”

So that is why I am now resting and reflecting on the day, while everything recharges.  (Good thing my Chromebook can recharge while I type!)  My second day at MLA ’14 is in the books, and I paced myself – didn’t go back for seconds at the Indian buffet – and satisfied myself with taking notes, knowing that I’ll have time when I get home to review it all at leisure.  Now, let me check my devices to see if they’re recharged yet . . .



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Section Program Planning for ’15 starts now!

As I write this, we’re a couple of hours away from the Welcome Reception for 2014, but planning for MLA ’15 is well underway.  The theme for the Austin conference will be “Librarians Without Limits.” As incoming chair-elect for the Relevant Issues Section, I met with leaders from other Sections and Special Interest Groups (SIGs) to begin selecting program themes for next year. Today was just introductions and brainstorming. Throughout the conference, we will be talking to each other and our sections/SIGs to generate ideas on what sessions will be offered in 2015. We’ll meet again on Wednesday, and then work through out the next month or so to finalize themes.

Why am I telling you about the sausage-making of program planning? Because the themes we decide on will be the basis of call for papers. And, section programming makes up the bulk of conference programming. Were you frustrated that you had a great idea to submit this year, but it didn’t fit any of the session themes? Do you have a great idea for a session? Now’s the time to speak up!

The best way to have input in next year’s section programming is to attend your section/SIGs business meeting, where 2015 planning will be discussed. Section and SIG business meetings are listed here.

Not a member of a section? Check out posters from each section and talk to section leaders at the Sunday Poster Session.

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Reminder: Sign Up By Monday for Chicago Library Tours!

The organizers of the MLA ’14 meeting in Chicago invite you to join one of three library tours that have been organized for MLA participants. Details for each tour are given.

PLEASE SIGN UP BY Monday, May 12th.

Tour of Galter Health Sciences Library, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University
May 17th 1:00-2:00 PM
303 E. Chicago Avenue

Meet at the Galter Health Sciences Library, 303 E. Chicago Avenue. Transportation is not provided. Cab fare is approximately $10 from downtown. Public transportation options can be found at:
Please note, Galter Health Sciences Library is located on the CHICAGO campus.

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. Please sign up by sending an email to with the subject line “MLA TOUR – GALTER” (please note space is limited).

Tour of the Newberry Library
May 17th 10:30 AM
60 West Walton Street

“A world-renowned independent research library in Chicago, the Newberry offers readers an extensive non-circulating collection of rare books, maps, music, manuscripts, and other printed material spanning six centuries.”

Meet at the Newberry Library, 60 West Walton Street. Transportation is not provided. Cab fare is approximately $10 from downtown.

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. Please sign up by sending an email to with the subject line “MLA TOUR – NEWBERRY” (please note space is limited).

Tour of the University of Chicago Library
May 15th 1:00-4:30 PM
1100 East 57th Street

The tour includes the Joe and Rika Mansueto Library (including a demonstration of the automatic book retrieval system), the University of Chicago Library Preservation Department, the Imaging/Imagining the Human Body in Anatomical Representation Exhibit in Special Collections Research Center and the John Crerar Library.

[Thanks to Barbara Kern for providing this information!]

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