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The NOVELNY Program : Meeting Minutes
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Meeting Minutes

July 8 , 2003

10:30 a.m. -3:00 p.m.
NYLINK Office Albany, New York

PRESENT: Tom Alrutz, Soumaya Baaklini, Mary Brink, Jeff Cannell, Diane Courtney, Bill Crumlish, Diana Cunningham, Carol Desch, Marilyn Douglas, Phyllis Fisher, Carey Hatch, Dottie Hiebing, Carole Huxley, Cara Janowsky, Sara Kelly Johns, Mary-Alice Lynch, Sara McCain, Gerald Nichols, Mary Redmond, John Shaloiko, Katherine Storms, Janet Welch

GUESTS: Donna Dixon (NYLINK), Mary Linda Todd

ABSENT: Loretta Ebert, James Kadamus, Susan Keitel, Wanda Knight, Edward McCormick, Chuck McMorran, John Meierhoffer, John Monahan, Marsha Ra, Kathleen Roe, David Walsh
RECORDER: Lisa Petrocelli

Welcome & Introductions

Dottie Hiebing, Chairperson, welcomed everyone to the meeting and asked members to introduce themselves. She thanked Mary Alice Lynch, NYLINK Executive Director for hosting the Steering Committee meeting.

State Librarian's Comments

Janet Welch, State Librarian, reminded everyone that NOVEL remains a top priority with the State Education Department (SED) and with the Board of Regents. Commissioner Mills and the Regents are working hard advocating for New Century Libraries legislative proposal in order to get the State funding needed to maintain and expand NOVEL.

Mrs. Welch also noted that she and Ms. Hiebing will soon be looking at succession planning for the NOVEL Steering Committee. They will be discussing a more formal structure of appointments with set terms for the Steering Committee members, and would appreciate any suggestions from current members. Mrs. Welch noted that the NOVEL Steering Committee is a standing advisory committee, working under the overarching policy umbrella of the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries. Mrs. Welch anticipates that there will be a NOVEL Steering Committee as long as there is a NOVEL project.

Approval Of Minutes

The Steering Committee approved the June 13, 2003 minutes of NOVEL Steering Committee Conference Call Meeting.

Novel Databases Project Update And Assessment

Mary Redmond reported that the State Library added a suite of Gale databases on April 1, 2003, ReferenceLink and Twaynes Literature, to replace Dialog@Carl. Shortly thereafter, Gale notified the State Library that they would no longer be supporting the ReferenceLink product.

Gale is now providing the following products for NOVEL as a replacement for ReferenceLink: Informe (a Spanish language database), Custom Newspapers, New York State Newspapers, and National Newspaper Index. Twaynes is also continued. Feedback thus far is very positive. People are particularly happy with full text of The New York Times.

Jerry Nichols noted that with the new Gale products, libraries can no longer link directly to the specific URLS for popular, individual newspapers - can the State Library get that capability back? Mary Redmond will investigate. Others noted the popularity of the upstate New York State newspapers.

Several NOVEL Steering Committee members suggested the State Library consider purchasing "Serial Solutions" as a next step for improving easy customer access to the thousands of newspapers and journals now available through NOVEL databases.

Linda Todd, State Library NOVEL Databases Internal Team member, presented statistics and assessment data on NOVEL Databases use. The State Library reached the Commissioner's goal of 4,400 libraries participating in the NOVEL Databases Program by June 30, 2003 and exceeded the goal of 8 million searches. As of May 2003, there were 9.44 million searches. Ms. Todd shared pie charts showing monthly use of various NOVEL databases. She noted that the State Library welcomes suggestions on types of statistics that should be used to promote NOVEL databases.

Steering Committee members commented:

Ms. Todd also shared several NOVEL anecdotes collected from NOVEL libraries. She asked NOVEL Steering Committee members to send her any anecdotal information they come across as they talk with people in the library community about NOVEL. These items are used for advocacy and for Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant reports to the federal Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

Mrs. Welch noted that it will probably take significantly more time to sign up the remaining libraries that are not participating in the NOVEL Databases Project. Most of the libraries not currently signed up do not have the technological capacity to use NOVEL, and/or they do not have the trained staff. The majority of the remaining libraries are school libraries, most without school librarians.

NOVEL Communications and Outreach to the Library Community

Mr. Nichols asked Ms. Redmond to review the State Library's current organization structure for NOVEL. Ms. Redmond described State Library current structure which includes:

Some Steering Committee members suggested that the State Library increase regular communications with the library community and the public on what is going on with NOVEL Databases. The State Library could deal more effectively with those few people who are publicly expressing dissatisfaction (on NYLINE for example) by being proactive and continually communicating. Broader communications to general library staff are needed. Perhaps State Library should think about targeting communications the way that NYLINK does, i.e. getting to key people in functional areas.

Ms. Welch explained that there are currently two major levels of communication: NYLINE and NOVEL Databases listserv. NOVEL Databases listserv is composed of a contact from each library participating in NOVEL Databases Project and includes more specific, technical information that does not appear on NYLINE. Ms. Welch noted that there could be more communication on NYLINE in general on what is happening with NOVEL.

Ms. Hiebing presented some examples of other state's virtual libraries and statewide databases: Galileo, OhioLink, TexShare. She discussed their various governance structures. She then asked Ms. Redmond to report on her presentation on NOVEL at the ALA Conference in Toronto. Mr. Alrutz attended the presentation and noted it was interesting and informative.

Ms. Hiebing referred Steering Committee members to the latest draft of the NOVEL Talking Points. The idea behind developing the talking points is so Steering Committee members will have a tool to help them make presentations and talk with others about NOVEL and what it means to State of New York, where funding comes from, work of Steering Committee, etc. Public presentations about NOVEL by Steering Committee members are important in the process of moving NOVEL forward. Steering Committee identified future possibilities for NOVEL presentations:

New Ideas Through Dec. 2003 - Speakers' Bureau List


Medical Library Association Chapters - Oct. Diana Cunningham
NYSCATE Conference "Learning Without Boundaries"
November 22-25, 2003 Albany Convention Center
Dottie Hiebing
Councils of Deans of Medical Schools Diana Cunningham
CICU Bill Crumlish (info)
NYLA/NY3Rs Academic Libraries Meeting/Syracuse- Oct. John Shaloiko & Dottie Hiebing
Ass't. Superintendents BOCES Curriculum and Instruction Partnership w/public librarians ALL (ask Jerry Nichols for advice)
BOCES (Regional Information Center Coordinators) Janet Welch/Marilyn Douglas
Chair of Library Committee Diane Courtney


Other Ideas for NOVEL Outreach/Presentations:

** 12:00 - Group adjourned for lunch and small groups **

Reports From NOVEL Subcommittees

ELECTRONIC RESOURCES GROUP - John Shaloiko and Diane Courtney, Co-Chairs

PORTAL GROUP- Marilyn Douglas, Acting Chair.

A subgroup of the Portal Group (Sara McCain, Marilyn Douglas, Linda Todd, Kate Storms, and chair John Meierhoffer) is refining the list of priorities for the NOVEL Portal from suggestions filtered from NOVEL portal seminar November 2002.

Several members of the Portal Group will meet on July 28 with David Walsh , SED Chief Information Officer, Ann Schiano, SED/EMSC Curriculum & Assessment, and Gary Kuchark, SED/Information Technology Services (ITS) to discuss the relationship between NOVEL and the SED Virtual Learning Space. The Portal Group is hoping SED/ITS will help us develop a NOVEL portal by providing the expertise and resources. What NOVEL has to offer is CONTENT - "deep web" information.

The Portal Group feels it is important to develop pilot to get a NOVEL portal off the ground. The Portal Group has identified several issues that will need to be addressed as pilot project is developed:

The Portal Group will provide a written report on the identified Portal Priorities, results of VLS meeting (s) and recommendations for next steps to the Steering Committee for discussion at the September Steering Committee meeting.

NOVEL at NYLA Conference, November 2003, Saratoga Springs

There will be several activities related to NOVEL at the NYLA Conference:

Upcoming Steering Committee Meetings

****NOVEL at NYLA: Thursday, November 6, 4:30-5:45 PM, "News from your State Library"

Action Items

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