Junior Parents Gather at Houghton Library for Reception

Lynne Schmelz  
Susan Fliss, Associate Librarian of Harvard College for Research and Instruction, discusses collection materials on display as part of Houghton's current exhibition with the family of a junior.

March 7, 2008 – Parents gathered in the Edison and Newman Room of Houghton Library on Friday, March 7, for HCL's Junior Parents Weekend Reception, sponsored by the Friends of the Harvard College Library. The annual brunch reception, part of the campus-wide Junior Parents Weekend, gives parents a chance to meet librarians, learn about library programs, and discover how the library is, or can be, part of their child's college experience.

Lynne M. Schmelz, Librarian for the Sciences, and Friends co-chair with Joan C. Suit, welcomed guests. Susan Fliss, Associate Librarian of Harvard College for Research and Instruction, spoke to parents about the availability and enthusiasm of the HCL librarians who are there to help their sons and daughters with their research. She emphasized that librarians love working with students at this stage in their academic careers—because of their questions and the wonderful topics they're just beginning to delve into—and that they are available to work in depth with undergraduates, preparing in advance for one-on-one consultations, compiling lists of resources, and discussing the research process in detail.

William Stoneman, Florence Fearrington Librarian of Houghton Library, also addressed the Class of 2009 parents, discussing how Houghton librarians try to help undergrads learn to work with special collections materials. Stoneman took a few minutes to point out the significance of a few items currently on exhibit in the Edison and Newman Room (like a medieval manuscript, a broadside, and children's literature illustrations) that hail from different parts of the library's collections.

Tours of Houghton and Widener followed the reception.

Arrangements for the Junior Parents Reception were made by Sabrina Particelli, Administrative Coordinator for Development, Office of the Librarian of Harvard College, and Lynne Schmelz.

Lynne Schmelz
Lynne Schmelz
Joan C. Suit, co-chair of the Friends of HCL, speaks with a Class of 2009 parent.
Kathleen Sheehan, Research Librarian in Widener Library, and Rebecca Graham, Associate Librarian of Harvard College for Administrative Services, talk about HCL services and collections with an '09 parent.