Kerrilynn Hits the Road

Kerrilynn Hurley, a Teen Services Librarian at the Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Community Library (MMSCL), presented at the ALA Annual Conference as part of a YALSA panel on Trends in YA Services: Using Mobile Devices to Serve Teens. Joining Kerrilynn on the panel was Jack Martin, New York Public Library, Jennifer Valesquez, San Antonio Public Library, Patrick F. Taylor Sci & Tech Academy students Enjoli Gilbert and Courtney Beamer, and Renee McGrath, Nassau Library System.

Kerrilynn spoke about a number of initiatives at MMSCL. In 2009, the library was awarded a grant to purchase 25 iPod Touches to use with the community. While their parents attended ESL classes, 15 high school students learned to use a variety of apps. At the end of the year party, each student demonstrated an app for an audience of their parents and peers.

A graduate of the School of Library and Information Studies at Queens College and a part-time librarian at Hampton Bays Public Library, Kerrilynn also wears another hat: Librarian on the Beach. She takes advantage of MMSCL’s proximity to the beach by bringing mobile devices and promotional material to Smith Point Beach. At a table on the boardwalk, Kerrilynn shows teens how to register online for programs, use the library catalog, and contact a librarian via text message. This summer, MMSCL will be sending a library van full of books, DVDs, laptops and library staff to the beach as part of the On the Road program. If you’ll be at the beach this summer, be sure to look for Kerrilynn!

To read more about the YALSA presentation on serving teens with mobile devices, take a look at moderator Linda Braun’s detailed post on the YALSA blog, which includes links to program handouts.

Spectrum Scholar from Suffolk Makes a Splash in New Orleans

Darla, a librarian trainee at the Half Hollow Hills Public Libray, is here in New Orleans at her first ALA conference as a 2010-2011 Spectrum Scholar. I caught up with Darla at last night’s Spectrum Professional Options Fair at the Royal Sonesta Hotel on Bourbon Street.

“This is just like speed-dating,” Darla laughed.

Darla was right: The Grand Ballroom was set up with tables representing various divisions of ALA, professional organizations, and OCLC, the fair’s sponsor. I was staffing the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) table along with ALSC president Mary Fellows and ALSC Membership/Marketing Specialist Dan Rude. Spectrum Scholars sought out tables of interest to network and learn more about proffessional opportunities.

Darla, who is a student at the Graduate School of Library and Information Studies at Queens College, still works at the Northport Public Library where she got her start as a page in the Youth Services Department. “Doris gave me so many conference tips on the plane ride down,” Darla said. I told Darla that when I was a trainee at Northport I was particulalry overwhelmed by my new role as reader’s advisor, and I kept recommending Sharon Creech to everyone who walked in the door. “I’m the same way with Neil Gaiman!” Darla confessed. Darla tackles this challenge by reading books off the new book carts at both of her libraries.

Darla left the ALSC table with a committee volunteer form in hand and encouragement from Mary Fellows to fill it out “multiple times.” Whether you are able to attend conferences or not, there are ways to get involved with ALA, and a little bit of perserverance always helps.