ER&L and DLF are pleased to congratulate Suzanne Grubb, Instructional Designer, Clinical Research Education Library at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), a 2015 ER&L + DLF Cross Pollinator award winner! Read excerpts from Suzanne’s winning essay:
How do you think the ER&L conference can support broadening you professional horizons? I’m a Swiss-army-knife librarian. Since graduating from library school, I’ve jumped headfirst into a range of solo projects, relying mainly on my wits, ninja research skills, and the vast advice/experience (and kindness) of friends and strangers in my professional networks. I’ve designed and built small-scale digital libraries for tech-savvy scientists, as well as new-to-the-‘Net senior citizens. I’ve worked on multi-million page websites, managing information experiences for hundreds of thousands of users. And, most recently, I’ve overseen the technical side of the overhaul of content production, conversion, and analytics workflows for a publications team migrating to a semantic scholarly journals platform. But, as I’ve built up my library chops helping small organizations harness the power of new electronic resources/digital library services trends and technologies, I’ve had a difficult time staying connected to the broader library ecosystem. Attending the ER&L conference would be an opportunity to immerse myself in the big-picture interconnected network of library professionals – as well as other stakeholders operating at the intersection of information technology and policy – and to deepen my professional understanding of the emerging players, politics, and possibilities. More importantly, I expect that the education gained through attending sessions and networking with the other participants would give me very practical, valuable tools, perspectives, and contacts that I can use to enhance my current (and future) digital library projects to better utilize new content and technologies, and to make my own information products more friendly to external academic institution, human, and machine/bot audiences.
Please describe what you can uniquely bring to the ER&L conference community? If invited to attend the ER&L conference as a cross-pollinator, I would bring my startup-cultivated fail-fast/fail-often/fail-forward passion for brainstorming, sandboxing, and integrating new ideas. I would bring a wealth of hard-won lessons learned in designing information experiences for diverse users in diverse (and adverse) conditions. I would bring a cross-domain perspective of information services, having worked across the full continuum from the guts of the servers to the customer service front lines. And, most importantly, I would bring my eyes and ears to listen and learn and share as much as possible. As an information professional who also serves as an instructional designer, I work to bridge the gap between library services and real-world performance impacts. In building my career, I try to look beyond the easy wins where we measure success in terms of “Did you find what you were looking for? Was it useful?” — and instead ask the harder questions: “How does this service change the way you integrate data/information/knowledge into your work and life?” At the ER&L conference, I would similarly try to look beyond questions of “What are the emerging trends and good practices?” to explore how these trends shape the assumptions we make, the systems we prize, and, of course, the practical endgames for our users. I’d look forward to sharing my lessons from the conference not only with the ER&L community, but also with my home special library communities and professional networks.
Learn more about the ER&L + DLF Cross Pollinator Award.