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The Davis Family Library at Middlebury College.

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What Every First-Year Student Should Know about Middlebury Libraries

September 12, 2018

Mike Roy, Dean of the Library

“We hear regularly from seniors that they wish that they had understood earlier in their careers at Middlebury that the library and the librarians can play an important role in their academic life at the College. When you start work on your first research paper, make an appointment with one of the librarians to talk through how to find the best sources for your project. Or drop by the research desk. We suspect that you’ll be amazed by the vast array of materials we can help you learn how to find and use, if only you just ask.”

Katrina Spencer, Literatures and Cultures Librarian

“First-year students should know that they can reserve group study (go/groupstudy) spaces in both the Davis Family and Armstrong Libraries. Streaming video content from all around the world is available on Kanopy (go/kanopy). And, students, just like anyone else in the community, can make requests for new purchases for our collections (go/requests). The libraries meet curricular needs and are responsive to needs that go beyond the scope of the curriculum, too.”

Terry Simpkins, Director, Discovery and Access Services

“We get the things you need for your course work, whether it’s a book, an ebook, printed music, DVD, CD, or database (go/requests). If we can’t purchase it or license it ourselves, we’ll get it for you from another library, anywhere in the world (go/ill). And if you want to know whether or not we have something, use MIDCAT, the library catalog (go/midcat) or Summon (go/summon), which is sort of like MIDCAT on steroids. Finally, you might also be surprised to learn we have a lot of technology equipment available for borrowing, from laptop chargers to video cameras to music keyboards. Just stop in at the circulation/borrowing desk and ask.”

Rebekah Irwin, Director and Curator, Special Collections and Archives

“First-year students, first of all, should walk through the front door of Special Collections (go/special) in the Davis Library and ask us something. What is your most valuable book? If I started at Middlebury in 1818, what would my major be? What is this place? After that, have a hands-on interaction with the rarest and most unique materials in the library. We think it’s the best way for you to make sense of the stories and ideas of the past—not just Middlebury College’s 218-year history, but the history of human aspiration and achievement, as it was handwritten, printed, tweeted, and Snapchatted. (And yes, we have Snapchats in the Archives.)  We’re on Instagram too! Follow us @middleburyspecialcollections.”

Wendy Shook, Science Data Librarian

“First-year students should know that research librarians are here to help them with all their research and digital literacy needs—don’t get frustrated, come talk to a librarian! Students should also know that Armstrong Science Library has services and spaces similar to the main library, but at the top of the hill in McCardell Bicentennial Hall.”