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HCL Hosts Graduate Student Reception

Hemment with GSAS student
Michael Hemment, Research Librarian and Head of Scholarly Research Initiatives, Widener Library, speaks with a student from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Tuesday's reception.

A steady stream of graduate students packed the Edison and Newman Room at Houghton Library on Tuesday evening to meet librarians from the College Library and FAS science libraries. The well-attended reception was designed to give students from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) the opportunity to become acquainted with research and collections librarians in an informal setting.

"We hoped to allow those who were able to be there an opportunity to meet face-to-face with even a few among Harvard's many dedicated librarians," said Joe Bourneuf, Head of Reference and Interim Co-Head of Research Services, Widener Library, and one of the event organizers. The reception also gave librarians the chance to personally connect with graduate students in their specific liaison areas.

"We wished to demonstrate that the library cares about their scholarship and will support them as they become expert researchers in their fields," said Susan Fliss, Associate Librarian of Harvard College for Research and Instruction. "We also wanted to make them aware that librarians are sources of support for when they begin teaching classes. We can work with them on teaching undergrads the research process, discuss designing research assignments that build students' skills in finding, evaluating and using information, and talk with them about the information environment in which undergrads work and live."

The reception re-establishes a similar event formerly held in Widener and sponsored by the Friends of the Harvard College Library. Last summer while planning September's annual orientation for first-year graduate students, Mary Beth Clack, Interim Co-Head of Research Services, Widener Library, learned from GSAS administrators that there was a desire to bring back the reception as one step in furthering collaborative efforts between the graduate school and HCL.
Event organizers included Bourneuf; Clack; Rachel Howarth, Associate Librarian for Public Services, Houghton Library; and Ellie Clement, Head of Reference/Research Instruction Liaison for the Sciences, Cabot Science Library.

McGill with GSAS student
Howarth with GSAS student
Ellen McGill, Reference and Electronic Resources Coordinator at Harvard-Yenching, discusses research possibilities with a GSAS student.
Rachel Howarth, Associate Librarian for Public Services at Houghton Library, talks with one of the many grad students on hand for the event.