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August '99 Vol.13 No.8 ISSN 0895-0806 phone: 402-471-2045, 800-307-2665
Timely information from the Nebraska Library Commission

typewriter [Announcements]

On July 15, applications for library accreditation were mailed to all unaccredited libraries, and all libraries with accreditation expiring this year. Applications are due back at the Library Commission by September 1. Accredited libraries are eligible for direct state aid and to apply for federal and state grants.

Library Journal is compiling data for the December 1999 Architectural Issue. Nebraska libraries with new construction or remodeling projects to report should contact Sally Snyder at the Nebraska Library Commission, 402-471-4003 or 800-307-2665, e-mail: Sally Snyder. The completion date for these projects should be between July 1, 1998 and June 30, 1999. There are two forms to fill out with information about referenda on library building projects and library operating fund increases. The deadline for completed forms is October 4.

The Nebraska Library Association (NLA) Scholarship Committee is planning a silent auction at the 1999 NLA/Nebraska Educational Media Association (NEMA) Conference in Lincoln to raise money for the Louise A. Nixon Scholarship fund. This scholarship supports full or part-time students pursuing graduate degrees in library science or school library media. The committee is soliciting cash donations and items to be donated for the silent auction scheduled for October 21, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. at the Cornhusker Hotel. To make a cash contribution, send it to the committee chair, Nancy Busch, Nebraska Library Commission, 1200 N Street, Suite 120, Lincoln, NE. For more information about the scholarship, see: To contribute an item to the silent auction, send or take it to the Library Commission (see above) or your System office.

Web-based Mini-courses are now available on the Library Commission home page. Commission staff plan and provide many workshops and training sessions for Nebraska library staff. Web-based mini-courses are one more way to help librarians plan for the future, develop policies, and continue their education. Mini-courses address topics and issues that library staff encounter in the daily operations of the library. Topics for Web-Based mini-courses include The Internet and Intellectual Freedom, The Internet and Internet for Reference, and Reach Out!-Using Electronic Resources to Serve Your Community. Participants receive continuing education credit hours to be used toward recertification in the Public Librarian or Board Certification Program. These mini-courses are designed to educate librarians to help promote Libraries for the 21st Century. Access the mini-courses at the Commission home page,, search on Mini-Courses.

The Paraprofessional Section of the Nebraska Library Association (NLA) is now accepting nominations for the Paraprofessional of the Year Award, given annually to a paraprofessional who has demonstrated outstanding service to the library field. For a nomination form, criteria, and list of past recipients, see For a print copy contact Mary Geibel, Paraprofessional Section Citations Committee Chair, Nebraska Library Commission, The Atrium, 1200 N Street, Suite 120, Lincoln, NE 68508-2023, e-mail: Mary Geibel, fax: 402-471-2083. Nominations are due September 15.

On September 17 and 18, Oglala Lakota College and Chadron State College (CSC) will co-host the 1999 Nebraska Literature Festival on the campus of Chadron State College. The theme, "Crossing Borders: Geographical, Ethnic, and Literary Frontiers in Plains Literature," acknowledges and celebrates the interstate cooperation behind the 1999 Festival. Artists from several states, working in various formats and representing diverse cultures, will come together to read, act, discuss, and perform during the festivities. Everyone is welcome and registration is free. For more information, see Announcements on the Library Commission home page, For program details (as they are available) or to register for a Friday morning writing workshop, contact Andrew Elkins, Dept of Language and Literature, 1000 Main St., Chadron State College, Chadron NE, 69337, 308-432-6307 or 308-432-2047, e-mail: <>.

The Library Commission maintains the State Government Publications Online Web site,, as part of the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse Service mission to provide access to Nebraska state government publications. New publications were posted to the site between January 1 and June 30. A search feature is provided for keyword access to words in agency and publication names. Suggestions for updates and additions are welcome.

In July, the U.S. Department of Commerce released Falling Through the Net: Defining the Digital Divide. The report finds that while the number of Americans connected to the nation's information infrastructure is soaring, a digital divide exists and is widening. Minorities, low-income persons, the less educated, and children of single parent households (particularly when they reside in rural areas or central cities) are among the groups that lack access to information resources. The report calls for public policies and private initiatives to expand affordable access to critical information resources. One of the solutions can be found at the school and public library. The report notes that "community access centers" such as libraries, schools and other public access points play an important role. The 1998 data demonstrate that community access centers are particularly well used by those groups who lack access at home or at work. The report can be seen at:

Remember to take a few days to celebrate Vision and Learning Month in August. A celebration toward the end of the month can also serve as a back-to-school activity. The American Foundation for Vision Awareness is partnering with the Library Commission to offer public libraries an opportunity to be involved with activities celebrating the important relationship between vision and learning. For a packet of materials contact Neil Powell of See-to-Learn, 402-474-2242, e-mail: <> by August 15. The packet includes suggested activities, a copy of a Proclamation, a booklist, a press release, stickers, bookmarks, and coupons for free vision assessments for three-year-olds. Specify number of bookmarks, stickers, and coupons needed.

A reminder for Nebraska public librarians: Mail the summer reading program evaluation by September 1 to Mary Jackson, Nebraska Library Commission, The Atrium, 1200 N Street, Suite 120, Lincoln, NE 68508-2023. The evaluation is in the "Treasure Your Library" summer reading manual on page 45.

September is Library Card Sign-up Month. The theme is, "Library cards connect kids, parents to learning, fun." Library Card Sign-up Month is a reminder that today, more than ever, a library card connects children to a range of resources. Nebraska librarians are encouraged to join the American Library Association and libraries across the country in sponsoring teach-ins, displays, and other activities. More information about Library Card Sign-up Month can be found at

If you do not have access to the Internet World Wide Web, contact Mary Geibel, 402-471-2045 or 800-307-2665, e-mail: Mary Geibel for print information about the previous announcements.

Preparation of this newsletter was supported in part by funds allocated through the Library Services and Technology Act administered by the United States Institute of Museum and Library Services.

lightbulb [Continuing Education & Training]

The Database Road Show

(Earlier sessions are full.)
August 18, 1:30 - 4:30 p.m., Hastings College, Wilson Center Computer Lab, Hastings.
(Map of campus can be found at
Contact: Jeannette Powell, 402-471-7740 or 800-307-2665, e-mail: a href="/scripts/mail/mail2staff.asp?Jeannette Powell"> Jeannette Powell.

Database training for librarians and library staff, covering all databases available to Nebraska libraries via statewide subscription. This includes Wilson OmniFile Full Text Select, Wilson Biographies Plus, Books in Print with Reviews, FirstSearch (the "Nebraska Package" of 12 databases), Health Source Plus (available to participating public libraries), and Electric Library (available to participating public and post-secondary academic libraries, as well as K-12 media centers that have signed up for discounted pricing). The Nebraska Library Commission's in-house Electronic Library and State Government Publications Online will also be covered, along with an introduction to the Library Commission's Web-based Mini-course on using outreach activities to increase utilization of electronic databases. Lunch will be on your own. Class size is limited. Registration accepted on a first-come basis. Please submit one registration form for each person attending, found at: There is no charge for this workshop, however, if you reserve a space in the session and fail to appear you will be required to pay a $10 workshop fee in advance to reserve a place at another training session. You may avoid the fee by canceling your reservation 24 hours in advance.

Nebraska State Data Center 10th Annual Summer Conference

August 26, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Boys Town Conference Center, 144th and Pacific, Omaha.
Contact: Nebraska State Data Center, Center for Public Affairs Research, Peter Kiewit Conference Center, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE 68182-0059. Questions? Call the Nebraska State Data Center at 402-595-1231.

Stay current with the latest data products, methods of access, and applications. Learn about current plans for the 2000 Census, American Community Survey, and more. Registration: cost is $40 on or before August 16 and $50 after, including lunch, conference materials, and refreshment breaks. Make check payable to University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Basic Skills/Collection Development

Alliance: September 1 and October 5, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Alliance Public Library.
Cozad: September 8 and October 1, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Wilson Public Library.
Papillion: September 14 and October 7, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Sump Memorial Library.
Lincoln: September 16 and September 28, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Nebraska Library Commission Crane Room.
Norfolk: September 20 and October 13, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Norfolk Public Library.
Grand Island: September 23 and October 12, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Grand Island Public Library.
Contact: Ellen Van Waart, 402-471-4004 or 800-307-2665, fax: 402-471-2083.

The Basic Skills course, Collection Development, includes development of policies and procedures addressing intellectual freedom and censorship, selection of materials, budgeting, and weeding. Use of appropriate selection tools will be discussed. The course will include selection tools on the Internet, supplementing the collection with electronic resources, and evaluating Internet resources. Collection Development is one of four core classes that are part of the requirements for Public Librarian Certification, and is equivalent to 12 CE credits. We ask that all participants with Internet access complete the online questionnaire as soon as possible. This can serve as your course registration. See , search on Basic Questionnaire. The $25 course fee can be sent to the Nebraska Library Commission, The Atrium, 1200 N Street, Suite 120, Lincoln, NE 68508-2023, Attn: Ellen Van Waart.

NEBASE Annual Meeting

September 10, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Nebraska Center for Continuing Education, 33rd and Holdrege Streets, Lincoln.
Contact: Jeannette Powell, 402-471-7740 or 800-307-2665, e-mail: a href="/scripts/mail/mail2staff.asp?Jeannette Powell"> Jeannette Powell.

Kate Nevins, Director of SOLINET, will be the keynote speaker, revisiting the Resource Dialog Retreat held in August 1996, and discussing the future of resource sharing. OCLC Sales Representatives will present an update of OCLC products and services. The afternoon breakout sessions will include a demonstration of the new FirstSearch, CatExpress, and a discussion of the new face of resource sharing. Cost: $15.

Libraries ... Media ... Technology: Facing the Challenges of the New Millennium

October 20-22, the Cornhusker Hotel, Lincoln.

Nebraska librarians and media specialists are invited to attend the 1999 Nebraska Library Association (NLA)/Nebraska Educational Media Association (NEMA) Convention. Keynote speaker, futurist Ted McCain, examines the destabilizing impact of technology from the individual's perspective, and challenges us to reinvent ourselves for the new millennium. For full details see

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