Multiple Intelligence – Part II

This is Part Two of my project to explore different examples of multiple intelligence that I’ve encountered and how these incidences affected my approach to everything from customer service to working with colleagues. Read Part One.


At a previous job I held at a non-profit organization, I worked on event-based fundraising initiatives and managed the campaigns online. For this, we contracted to use a third-party online fundraising CMS. This system could generate a fully functional, socially-based fundraising website in 15 minutes: fill out all the fields and select some settings on the back-end, and voilà! Your website is up-and-running. Of course, we weren’t satisfied with that – we wanted our site customized and branded to the fullest extent possible. We found every tweak and hack and work-around we could to make our site look and feel like it wasn’t an out-of-the-box CMS. Within a couple of weeks of signing our contract with the vendor, we’d already been upgraded to “super user” status and, thanks to us, they’d filled out pages of ideas for improvements and expansions to roll out with future updates.
Continue reading “Multiple Intelligence – Part II”

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Multiple Intelligence – Part I

I’m a firm believer in the Theory of Multiple Intelligences. In part, it comes from my father, who spent his life as an educator; in particular, he specialized in the history and philosophy of education. But my own experiences bear out the general truth of it – different people are intelligent in different ways. The world can make perfect sense to one person in a way that makes no sense at all to someone else. This doesn’t make either person wrong, and it doesn’t mean that either sense of things is invalid. Our traditional understanding of intelligence recognizes only a very narrow scope of potential human intelligence that has been historically valued by one particular culture.

This fact lies at the heart of almost everything I’ve ever done. I’ve worked an incredible variety of jobs in my life and all of them required some understanding of how other people (co-workers, customers, etc.) see the world.

As a librarian, I’m especially aware of this reality. Our job is to help people access and use information. Success in this endeavor is entirely dependent on being able to relate information to an individual’s personal paradigm – or, in some cases, helping someone to open their mind to other paradigms entirely.
Continue reading “Multiple Intelligence – Part I”

Hey Authors! Where’s the Library Love When it Comes to Ebooks?

Every time news breaks about a library getting its budget slashed, or a system under threat of being shut down, we see authors from all over the world eager to publicly proclaim their love of libraries. On blogs, on social media, in articles and print, they speak of the irreducible importance of libraries in their careers, their lives, and their communities. They argue passionately for the societal value of the free access to information that only libraries provide.

Such declarations of library love from our favorite authors are not only incredibly heart-warming – they’re essential in our efforts to maintain library service and support in our communities.

In the current struggle between libraries and publishers over ebook lending, I’ve often wondered what would happen if all these authors were to jump into the debate with the same level of library love they show when our budgets are threatened.
Continue reading “Hey Authors! Where’s the Library Love When it Comes to Ebooks?”

Education & the Importance of Open Discussion

I want to share this article. Given the irreducible importance of the role that libraries play in education and the promotion of open discussion in our society, I think the points elucidated here apply to us, as well.

Charles Negy, Professor, Says Students Showed ‘Religious Arrogance And Bigotry’ In A Letter Later Posted On Reddit (The Huffington Post, posted online on August 16, 2012)

While I may not be entirely comfortable with the professor’s focus on Christians and intolerance (I know many, many Christians who despise intolerance and close-mindedness; likewise, I know many close-minded and intolerant people from other religions) I deeply appreciate what he has to say about the absolute importance of open debate and critical thought.
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Public Libraries as Place – or, Who Inherits the Legacy of Borders?

The Carnegie Corporation recently published the following article:

Today’s Public Libraries: Public Places of Excellence, Education and Innovation

Personally, I think this is the best summation of the value of public libraries I’ve read. I especially appreciate that the author talks about the importance of place in our culture.

Of course, whenever anyone talks about place in conjunction with books & media, it makes me miss Borders. For almost two decades, they managed to be the place for people to hang out and read in most urban areas in this country.

When Borders closed its doors last year, I wrote the following:
Continue reading “Public Libraries as Place – or, Who Inherits the Legacy of Borders?”

Welcome to my blog!

After a little over a year working in a public library, I find that I have stuff to say. So I’m going to use this space to say it!

Not all my posts will be strictly library-related. I believe that libraries are so deeply embedded in our lives and our communities that a strict separation of my library ideas and my personal thoughts & beliefs presents a false separation. Being a librarian isn’t just what I do for a living – being a librarian is who I am.

So, here goes! My personal experiment in blogging commences! Stay tuned, and let me know what you think!