Here’s this week’s news from WebJunction and WebJunction Minnesota:
·WebJunction Homepage Spotlight:  “You’re Not a Real Fan!”: What Libraries Can Offer Fandom; Libraries Building Community Partnerships
·Upcoming Webinars – March-May 2014
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WebJunction Home Page Spotlight

“You’re Not a Real Fan!”: What Libraries Can Offer Fandom
Maureen Langley / Published: 12 March 2014
Maureen Langley is a part-time Library Consultant at the Montgomery County-Norristown Public Library. Librarian, geek, and pop culture enthusiast, you can usually find her reading comics somewhere or online at LinkedinFacebook, and Pinterest.
Fandom, enthusiasts surrounding a particular work or interest, is becoming increasingly popular. Members of fandom, as well as those researching this phenomenon, agree that it has a positive impact on individuals including improved social and technical skills, a place to safely share creative works, and a welcoming environment of like-minded individuals. Unfortunately, there are some negative aspects of fandom including judgment of outsiders, exclusion, and groupthink. Maureen Langley, Library Consultant at the Montgomery County-Norristown Public Library, believes that libraries have an opportunity to apply one of their core values, intellectual freedom, to fandom in order to battle these negative aspects.

Read more >> “You’re Not a Real Fan!”: What Libraries Can Offer Fandom

Libraries Building Strong Community Partnerships
Megan Knapp / Published: 05 March 2014
As trusted centers of the community, libraries are in a unique position to attract potential partners, and to provide resources and benefits to organizations with common goals. In a time of diminishing funds and increasing demands, partnerships are essential to meeting community needs, and to sustaining an active and engaging environment for customers.
[Reader Poll: Which of the factors on our list is most important in creating and sustaining a successful partnership? Take the poll.]

Read more >> Libraries Building Strong Community Partnerships


Upcoming WebJunction Webinars – March, April, and May 2014

March Webinars:

Health Happens in Libraries: Prioritizing Patron and Partner Engagement

Thursday, March 27, 2014 ♦ 2 pm Eastern / 1 pm Central / 11 am Pacific  60 min
Staying attuned to community needs and engaging strong partners to address those needs are hallmarks of 21st century public librarianship. Libraries across the country have implemented inventive patron and partner engagement approaches in conjunction with the initial open enrollment period of the Affordable Care Act, which ends March 31, 2014. Join the Health Happens in Libraries project team for this interactive session, to discuss how your library can integrate these best practices into your local health information service priorities.
April Webinars:

The Online Learner: Sinking or Swimming?
Thursday, April 3, 2014 ♦ 2 pm Eastern / 1 pm Central / 11 am Pacific  60 min
Early Registration: http://www.webjunction.org/events/webjunction/online-learner-sinking-or-swimming.html

The “learner at the center” has become a core strategy in education and training. Strategies like flipped classrooms, MOOCs, or peer collaborations are all part of a trend toward very personalized learning—”me-learning.” These trends increasingly emphasize online learning environments that are learner-initiated, learner activated, and learner-constructed. How can individuals prepare to own their own learning and how can administrators help them stay afloat? Presenters from WebJunction and Learning Round Table will share their discoveries about the future of learning and strategies for supporting and empowering the learner.
This webinar is hosted in collaboration with ALA’s Learning Round Table.
Digital Literacy: Libraries Respond to Community Needs
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 ♦ 2 pm Eastern / 1 pm Central / 11 am Pacific  60 min
Libraries know digital literacy; they’ve been the go-to resource for their communities for years. Yet the need continues to grow as the demand for basic skills intensifies and new skills emerge. Whether supporting job hunters, students, older adults, or anyone seeking new technology knowledge, find out how trainers in libraries are using curricula, resources, and tools to help people in their communities advance their digital proficiency. Explore practical ways for all libraries to address digital literacy programming and training—from classroom settings, drop-in classes, or responding to patron needs on the fly. Learn about:
·         750+ free self-paced online classes from GCFLearnFree.org, with examples of how trainers in libraries are using their curriculum.
·         DigitalLearn.org, a collection of self-directed tutorials for end-users to increase their digital literacy, and a community of practice for digital literacy trainers to share resources, tools and best practices.
Share your ideas, best practices, and resources as we work together to help people attain new digital literacy skills.
Presented by:
·         Jessica Meadows, Curriculum Coordinator, GCFLearnFree.org
·         Melissa Ziel, Information Desk Supervisor, Gail Borden Public Library District, IL
·         Jamie Hollier, Project Manager, DigitalLearn.org

May Webinars:
 Please sign up now in order to take advantage of this early registration opportunity! Share the information with colleagues in the Minnesota library community! This information will be made available to the general WJ membership in the *April* edition of Crossroads.

Reference Services: Tried, True, and New
Thursday, May 8, 2014 ♦ 2 pm Eastern / 1 pm Central / 11 am Pacific  60 min
Early Registration: http://www.webjunction.org/events/webjunction/reference-services-tried-true-new.html

Reference is still intrinsic to library services. It is evolving with changing patron needs, varied information resources and new delivery formats. Yet much of traditional practice remains important to providing quality information services to patrons. In this webinar, we will explore the balance between traditional and contemporary reference approaches, inviting you to join this open space conversation. What methods do you employ for reference today? What works? What doesn’t? How does social media play a role? Let’s learn from each other “how we do reference” so we can find the best fusion of traditional and modern reference service.
This webinar is hosted in collaboration with Drexel University Online and Drexel University’s College of Computing & Informatics. WebJunction members receive a 20% tuition reduction for this, the country’s premier online Master’s in Library and Information Science program.
Presented by: Vanessa Irvin Morris, Assistant Teaching Professor, College of Computing & Informatics, Drexel University.

Transforming Library Space for Community Engagement
Thursday, May 22, 2014 ♦ 1 pm Eastern / 12 pm Central / 10 am Pacific  60 min
Early Registration: http://www.webjunction.org/events/webjunction/transforming-library-space-for-community-engagement.html

As libraries expand their focus from collections to creation, physical spaces are being transformed in ways that enhance community engagement in the digital age. Rethink how your library’s space might be configured to better enable your patrons to interact with technology and with each other. While future-facing libraries are pushing boundaries, the public still perceives libraries as being primarily about books. Learn how some key alterations to existing library space can refresh public perceptions. We’ll look at a variety of projects, ranging from larger room renovations to smaller libraries who redefined space on a modest scale, yet still had a strong impact on the community.
Panelists: Betha Gutsche, Program Manager, WebJunction; Beth Farley, Head of Information and Reader Services, Bellingham (WA) Public Library; and Eileen Shaw, Everson Branch Manager, Whatcom County (WA) Library System.

Health Happens in Libraries: Technology Planning for eHealth
Wednesday, May 28, 2014 ♦ 2 pm Eastern / 1 pm Central / 11 am Pacific  60 min
Early Registration: http://www.webjunction.org/events/webjunction/technology-planning-for-ehealth.html

As the intersection of digital technology and individual health management grows, patrons will turn to libraries to access digital resources and learn how to put technology to work for their health. A recent IMLS study showed that an estimated 37 percent of library computer users (28 million people) explore health and wellness issues, including learning about medical conditions, finding health care providers, and assessing health insurance options. Join the Health Happens in Libraries team to learn how public libraries can leverage their technology infrastructure to better serve the health information needs of patrons. Participants will learn best practices and resources for eHealth technology planning for libraries of all sizes. Participants will also be introduced to strategies for communicating with community partners about their technology resources, and identifying ways to build eHealth services through collaboration.

WJMN Team
Mary Ann Van Cura, State Library Services
Cecelia Boone, Minitex
Affiliation with WebJunction Minnesota is free and available to members of the Minnesota library community. Tell your colleagues! 
The Institute of Museum and Library Services, a Federal Agency that fosters innovation, leadership and a lifetime of learning, in conjunction with State Library services, a division of the Minnesota Department  of Education, which administers federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants, supports the WebJunction Minnesota project.