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Vol. 13-49                                                                                                                     12.3.13
Library Assistants Program

The newly revised, freshly tweaked New York Library Association's Library Assistants Training Program will be coming to the MHLS Auditorium in January 2014! This program will meet on three consecutive Tuesdays from 9:00am - 4:00pm with an hour lunch break:

  • January 7
  • January 14
  • January 21
  • January 28 (reserved as a snow date if any of the other classes are cancelled)

This certificate, non-credit program is open to individuals already working or newly hired in libraries, or people interested in working in libraries. To receive a certificate, the individual must complete the entire 18 hour program. 


Introduction (Day 1, morning) 
An introduction to libraries and library service.  Discussion topics include the history of libraries, the foundational principles of library service, the major types of libraries, the different functional areas of library work, the various jobs and roles in library work, an overview of the current employment landscape in the library field, and a discussion of "hot topics" such as censorship, privacy, rights of access, social media, etc. 


Reference Services (Day 1, afternoon) 
This component of the training program is an introduction to reference and information services in libraries. Topics include the organization of information, the reference question, and search strategies.  Electronic reference products, trends in reference work, types of reference materials, and library/bibliographic instruction/information literacy, are discussed. The role of the library assistant in this aspect of library service is explored.


Public Services (Day 2) 
An introduction to public services in libraries. This section covers access policies and procedures, collection management, customer service, and public relations.


Technical Services (Day 3) 
An introduction to technical services in libraries. This section covers technical services policies and procedures, also technical components of general utility across the library.

The cost for the program is $215 for NYLA Members and $255 for NON-NYLA Members. All materials and lunch are included. To read the student outcomes for each section and to register visit http://bit.ly/1aS8Zcy.  

MHLS Announcements

A message from Tom Sloan, MHLS Executive Director: Star Libraries Make Us All Winners 


The Julia L. Butterfield Memorial Library, Philmont Public Library, Red Hook Public Library, Tivoli Free Library, and Windham Public Library have been selected as "American's Star Libraries" as recently reported in Library Journal. Congratulations to the trustees, directors, staff, and communities that are recognized for exceptional circulation, visits, program attendance, and computer use, all based on transactions per capita.


In addition to recognizing individual library excellence, the Star Library national rating system encourages improvement to nationally collected library statistics and library self-evaluation. The report's authors suggest a number of ways a library may use the report data. A start might be to ask and answer a few questions: 

  1. Where does your library rank in the national data and why?   
  2. What are the Star Libraries doing that might be useful to you in delivering services?

Benchmarking is another way to think about comparing one library to another. In many situations, when an organization seeks to improve their services, they benchmark. A comparison might be on operational topics (i.e., philosophies, policies, practices) or service outputs (i.e., circulation, visits, program attendance, computer use). Whatever a library wishes to benchmark, identifying and measuring against a high-performing organization might provide useful information and insight.


The full article on Star Libraries and how to access the data for your library is available at  http://lj.libraryjournal.com/. As always, if MHLS staff might be of any assistance, please contact us.

Reference & Collection Development

Help Connect Your Community with their STAR Tax Exemption! More than 900,000 homeowners have yet to register for their Basic STAR property tax exemptions. It's important that homeowners have the chance to register; the average STAR exemption is $700 per year. The enrollment deadline for claiming the STAR Tax Exemption is December 31, 2013. The NYS Tax Department is sending multiple mailings and participating in hundreds of local events to ensure that everyone who is eligible registers and continues to receive the exemption. Help spread the word through your library's eNewsletter, website and in the library. There is a step-by-step video tutorial that walks individuals through the entire process in under five minutes: http://bit.ly/1hgu3h5 .To learn more about STAR registration, visit the Tax Department at www.tax.ny.gov or call: 518.457.2036.

[The STAR Tax Exemption reminder is provided with thanks to the New York Library Association for reminding us that once again, New York State's libraries are poised and positioned to serve the information needs of the citizenry.]

Job Openings

The Mid-Hudson Library System in Poughkeepsie, New York is now accepting resumes to fill a part-time cataloging specialist position. The deadline to apply for this position is December 20, 2013.


Summary: Performs cataloging duties related to bibliographic maintenance to ensure that database records are complete, up-to-date, and accurate, and provides training to staff and member libraries as required.


Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree; or six months to one year full-time related experience and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • A working knowledge of Integrated Library System (ILS) software.
  • Working knowledge of MARC structure.
  • Proficiency in searching bibliographic databases for records.
  • Familiarity with Library of Congress subject headings and the Anglo-American Cataloging Rules (AACR2) of record organization.
  • The ability to write documentation related to cataloging procedures.
  • The ability to read and interpret procedure manuals.
  • Must be able to demonstrate strong verbal communication skills in phone support and in-person training environments.
  • The ability to adapt to changing technologies.
  • Familiarity with the Windows 7 operating system and Microsoft Office suite.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience using either the Millennium or Sierra ILS.
  • Some background in written Spanish.
  • Experience with the RDA cataloging standard.
  • Experience with MARC-Edit software.
  • Experience with library vendor software including Baker and Taylor Title Source 3 and Midwest Tapes.

Application Process:

  • Please submit your resume online as an PDF attachment to jobs@midhudson.org
  • Position is expected to be filled within two weeks after application deadline.

MHLS recommends that the minimum starting salary of a full or part-time librarian with an MLS degree be at least equal to that of a teacher with a master's degree in the same community.


Member Libraries are welcome to submit items of interest and job openings to the MHLS Bulletin: bulletin@midhudson.org

The MHLS Bulletin is available on line at http://midhudson.org/bulletins/main.htm.