Tag Archives: MiddPoints

Katrina, Atlanta, and NCAAL

 

Katrina poses in front of the National Conference of African American Librarians’ banner.

Middlebury’s Literatures & Cultures Librarian Katrina Spencer attended the National Conference of African American Librarians (NCAAL) in Atlanta, Georgia. See a brief video from the opening session shared on Twitter and read more coverage of the event in American Libraries’ Magazine.

 

How was your conference?

OMG, great! I feel like this conference was Middlebury’s personal gift to me. It fed my soul, which was hungrier than I expected.

What made it great?

For the first time ever, I actually got to stay on site where the conference I was attending was being held. That makes a huge difference– to not have to catch a taxi, bus or train to the conference site and navigate inclement weather/downpours of rain, and also to be able to retire to one’s room to take breaks between sessions was a blessing!

There were beautiful people in the city. Beautiful black people. With braids, twist-outs, locks. . . And it was the first time that I’d seen black and white people voluntarily spending time together on such a scale. When I’ve seen this in the past, it has been rather exceptional and episodic. There I saw people from both groups treating each other fraternally. I can’t say I was expecting that and I can’t say, after 30 years, that I’d seen it before as such a normalized part of a landscape. But, to see that and to juxtapose it with the news from Charlottesville, Virginia is mind-boggling. Progress in terms of racial politics in this country, to say the very least, is spotty.

With much help from Davis Family Library’s Marlena Evans, the banners to be used during the February 2018 Black History Month display have been designed. Katrina’s presentation posed the question, “What do I put on display?” and encouraged librarians to think critically about their choices.

What was your presentation on?

The title of my proposal was “What I Wish I Would Have Known” and referred to my education on black history and blackness as a child growing up in Los Angeles in the 1990s. Succinctly, the Transatlantic Slave Trade impacted almost the entire Western hemisphere, not just the United States; the struggle for civil rights and social justice did not end in the 1960s; and black peoples are not defined by the violent scenarios and oppressive societies we encounter, yesterday, today, or tomorrow.

Katrina (far left) poses with librarians and archivists who all graduated from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, with library and information science degrees.

A screenshot from the Atlanta University Center’s Robert W. Woodruff Library website.

What did you do?

I visited historic and cultural sites, for example, the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History and the Atlanta University Center’s (AUC) Robert W. Woodruff Library that serves Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, and Spelman College. I also spent time with several alums from my library and information science alma mater, the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

What did you learn?

  • Clark Atlanta University, Spelman College, and Morehouse College are all served by the same library.
  • The AUC’s archives currently hold Dr. Martin Luther King’s briefcase.
  • Malcolm X wrote postcards home from Lebanon and signed them “El Hajj Malik El Shabazz,” also held in the AUC archives.
  • Despite the fact that many HBCUs are suffering in terms of securing funds to properly maintain their grounds and facilities, the AUC is tremendous, popular, and well maintained.
  • There’s a published book of photos on Muhammad Ali’s life and fights that weighs over 70 pounds! A copy is held in the Auburn Avenue Research Library’s archives.
  • The library and information science field is more intimate than you might think!
  • Black librarians are interested in revamping the ways in which we teach about black history.
  • Tom Joyner is famous and funny. And he says he met his wife in a library.
  • BCALA is interested in recruiting new members to its body.

Were you inspired to pursue new projects? Come up with any news ideas?

Screenshot of an image published on the 3rd National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (JCLC) website

Absolutely!

  • First, Leo and Kathryn were essentially looking for ways to recruit and retain people of color within their libraries at their respective institutions. As someone from that target demographic, I have thoughts, strategies and insight I want to share with them.
  • Second, I learned that BCALA publishes its own seasonal newsletter, BCALA News, in which, among other pieces, literary works are reviewed. I’ll pitch an idea to the editor.
  • Third, in every conference bag, there was a save-the-date type of invitation to 2018’s Joint Conference of Librarians of Color. I wasn’t aware of the meeting but now I want to attend.

Anything you might do differently next time?

It would be great to have my presentation entirely prepped before departing for the conference site so that when I’m there, all I have to be concerned about is showing up.

Gad Kibet Comments on the School of the Environment

Name: Gad Kibet

Hometown: Kapenguria, Kenya

Major: Computer Science

Year at Middlebury: Junior

How did you decide to enroll in the School of the Environment and what are you hoping to gain?

I decided to enroll in the School Environment because I wanted to gain a better understanding of the environmental issues we face today. It goes without saying that climate change is one of the most debated issues today yet many have a limited understanding on the topic. Through the program, I hope to learn more about these issues so that I can play a role in shaping the future of our shared environment.

How is your day structured?

I would say that each day in the program is intense and demanding given that we have to fulfill an equivalent of three college courses in six weeks. Classes usually begin at nine and end between three and  five with a break in between the morning and afternoon sessions. There is also a host of extracurricular activities and leadership workshops students are required to attend. Despite its rather taxing and busy schedule, I would argue that the program offers a wide array of fun and engaging activities. The schedule ranges from busy in-class sessions to field trips which provide an opportunity to experience the delightful Vermont summer while learning about the environment.

What have you learned so far?

Unlike in normal classroom settings, I have been able to learn more by interacting with peers and professionals. Through the course of the program, I have come to learn more about my weaknesses and strengths and how I can flex my personality to better myself. Working in groups, in particular, has helped me realize the importance of listening to others and acknowledging  their perspectives.

To whom would you recommend the School of the Environment?

I would recommend this program to anyone who wishes to expand their thinking horizons and learn how they can effectively bring change in their societies.

How do the libraries help you achieve your goals?

The library has been resourceful in providing a peaceful and quiet space to facilitate group discussions and personal studies. Resources such as the [Wilson Media Lab] and Help Desk have also been instrumental in facilitating learning and in providing technical assistance whenever needed.

Librarian’s Note: To schedule use of the group study spaces in the Davis Family Library, visit go.middlebury.edu/groupstudy. For more posts like these, like our Facebook page.

ACTT Proposal for the Adoption of Panopto

Why

The ACTT recommended a fall 2016 Panopto Pilot, following the spring 2016 evaluation of streaming media and video asset management services. 10 Undergraduate and 8 MIIS courses used Panopto for video streaming. Students that also used Canvas in their courses could access video from Panopto, however they had to log in again. Some faculty at MIIS also used the webcasting feature successfully, including interactive discussion and note-taking features. Sharing videos via Canvas site embedding and through a link has resulted in a good user experience, however it currently requires separate logins to Canvas and Panopto platforms.

Panopto has indicated that it would add the following features to the video streaming service by December 17th:

  • Quizzing — Instructors can add multiple choice, multi-select, and true/false questions into any video using the Panopto editor. Viewers can take quizzes in the interactive player, and instructors can access real-time reports of all responses.
  • Captions — Users can access Panopto’s machine-generated speech-to-text captions and modify them in the video editor. In addition, users can customize the color, size, and position of captions during playback.
  • Primary Video Switching — For multi-camera recordings, video creators can switch between primary video feeds using the Panopto editor.
  • Enhanced Editing — Adding the ability to upload custom thumbnails, and to upload and manage slides within the video timeline.

A shortcode plugin for WordPress has been added to sites.middlebury.edu/sites.miis.edu. Currently it is not possible to add a Panopto video to Drupal, but other schools have solutions for embedding in Drupal that they are willing to share.

Feedback on Panopto has been generally good, and it has been useful for the classes that did use it. Departments are interested in the service that Panopto provides.

 

Recommendation Summary

The Academic Cyberinfrastructure Transformation Team recommends adding Panopto to the ITS fiscal year 2018 budget.

  • Middlebury contracts a Panopto enterprise license for 3-5 years
  • Middlebury encourages Panopto to provide better integration with Canvas
  • This will enable the decommissioning of Middmedia, Muskrat, and other video streaming services in a separate project. This should be considered at the end of FY19.

 

 

Implementation Timeline

Most of this work has been accomplished during the Fall 2016 pilot of Panopto. There is some work being done by Panopto technical staff to provide better integration with Canvas, they have let us know it is scheduled to be completed by December 17, 2016.

What Who When
Budget Proposal January 2017
Budget Decision May 2017
Panopto Pilot continues Spring 2017
Test LTI – Pilot Spring 2017
Implement Panopto including SSO and Canvas LTI Media Services and Academic Technology June-July 2017
Train Middlebury and MIIS HelpDesk & Media Services staff June-July 2017

Support

Outline of responsibilities

What Who
Panopto Support available to users 4 authorized contacts may receive support via: phone, email

General users may use chat and web tickets

Pedagogy/Instructional Design-related support Primary: Academic Tech, DLC, DL

Backup Support: Media Services

Administrative-use support (core functions) Primary: Media Services*
Other academic support (creativity & innovation project, student internship w/ or w/out credit, faculty research, symposium) Primary: Media Services

Backup Support: Academic Tech, DLC, DL

Training Media Services, Academic Tech, DLC, DL

 

* Conversations are occurring to identify course-related and administrative department support for the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

 

ACTT Proposal for the Adoption of Zoom

Why

We investigated alternative web conferencing services for remote work, collaboration, and online learning. Our Adobe service provider will be discontinuing their education pricing for Adobe Connect licenses, doubling our costs.

A number of services were identified; some of them were also being investigated through the IT Unified Communications project. We first inventoried the features of each service and then identified the top three services to compare with Adobe Connect. 15 people from ACTT Core group and extended ACTT at Middlebury and Monterey groups compared the user experiences of the three services with Adobe Connect and each other.

Zoom was selected because it had the best user experience of the services identified after having tested it in all three categories named above: remote work, collaboration, and online learning. It had a good reputation amongst users and was being successfully implemented in a variety of mission-critical contexts: an online class, in an Envisioning Middlebury community initiated conversation attended by 30 people on the topic of distance collaboration and remote work, in a global virtual nonproliferation education forum coordinated from Monterey, and in a variety of other use cases. The enterprise license cost was also comparatively lower.

Integrated access to reliable, scalable, and flexible web conferencing for all Middlebury students, faculty and staff will be realized by adopting Zoom at the enterprise level (all Middlebury). The potential impact of this investment in shared resources include improved communications, outreach, and teaching innovation.

 

Recommendation Summary

The Academic Cyberinfrastructure Transformation Team recommends adding Zoom to the ITS fiscal year 2018 budget, replacing prior services.

  • Middlebury contracts a Zoom enterprise license for one year
  • Middlebury contracts with CirQ LTI to allow Zoom-based web conferencing for online and hybrid courses to be available through Canvas

 

Cost

Proposed FY 18 Zoom cost: $41,000 annually

Host licenses for all Middlebury users, 470 100 capacity meeting rooms and ten 500 capacity meeting rooms. In addition to offering a web conferencing solution, Zoom has the potential to phase out and replace existing video conferencing services, a significant savings for Middlebury over the next few years.

Comparative cost of Adobe Connect:

Actual FY 17 Adobe Connect Cost: $18,000

Proposed FY 18 Adobe Connect Cost: $36,000

  • (discontinuing educational discount)
  • 80 host licenses and 2 webinar rooms accommodating 500 users

 

Implementation Timeline

Most of this work has been accomplished during the Fall 2016 pilot of Zoom. Also, the pilot license will be extended during Spring 2017 to transition users from Adobe Connect to Zoom.

What Who When
Budget Proposal January 2017
Budget Decision May 2017
Extended Zoom Pilot, Transition people away from Adobe Connect Spring 2017
Test LTI – Pilot Spring 2017
Implement Zoom including SSO and Canvas LTI Media Services, CSNS and Academic Technology June-July 2017
Decommission Adobe Connect January-May 2017
Train Middlebury and Monterey Institute  HelpDesk staff June-July 2017

Support

Outline of responsibilities

What Who
Zoom Support available to users Tier 1 Vendor support via: phone, email, chat
Course-related support Primary: Media Services*

Backup Support: Academic Tech, DLC, DL

Administrative-use support (core functions) Primary: Media Services*
Other academic support (creativity & innovation project, student internship w/ or w/out credit, faculty research, symposium) Primary: Media Services

Backup Support: Academic Tech, DLC, DL

Training Media Services
Academic Consultation Academic Tech, DLC, DL

 

* Conversations are occurring to identify course-related and administrative department support for the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

@MiddInfoSec Phishing Alert: don’t fall for “Thammasat Great Journal, Thailand” scam email

Be on the alert for a suspicious email purportedly sent from “thammasat@goconnext.com” with the subject line “Thammasat Great Journal, Thailand“. This is a confirmed phishing message, designed to trick you into downloading a malicious file. Do not click on the links in the message or reply to the message. If you find a copy of the message in your inbox, please delete it. If you find a copy of this message in your spam quarantine, please ignore it and do not release it. The message will be deleted from your quarantine automatically in the next few days.

 For more information about phishing attacks, please visit http://go.middlebury.edu/phishing. For more information about the spam quarantine, please visit http://go.middlebury.edu/spam.

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