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2020/21 Library & Learning Commons Annual Report

The Team

Organizational Effectiveness

Maintaining Strong Team Bonds, Remotely

Langara Zoom HalloweenWith the shift to working from home, the Library adapted its meeting schedule to increase employee engagement and interconnection. All Hands Meetings, typically a semi-annual event, are now held every two month and weekly staff check-ins allow staff members to stay up-to-date regarding their colleagues' ongoing initiatives.

The Library also maintained strong team bonds by hosting fun virtual meet-ups, including a Halloween party (pictured), a winter holiday whiskey hour, and recurring informal coffee breaks.

Staffing Updates

With Dan Slessor’s term as Reference Coordinator coming to an end in May 2020, Alli Sullivan was elected as the Library’s new Reference Coordinator. Joyce Wong was re-elected as the Coordinator of User Experience, Emma Lawson was re-elected as Coordinator of Collection Development, and Ryan Vernon was re-elected as Coordinator of Technical Services. 

Media Librarian Annie Jensen welcomed a baby to her family in 2021 and started her parental leave. Mia Clarkson, the Library’s Media Librarian from 2019 to 2020, has returned to Langara to again cover Annie’s maternity leave position.

Science Librarian Jennifer Weldon has taken on a full-time position with CAPER-BC.

Congratulations to our employees who celebrated Langara service milestones this year: Sandy Ragan (40 years), Joyce Wong (20 years), and Patricia Cia (15 years).

Dan Slessor's pictureAllison Sullivan's pictureAnnie JensenMia ClarksonJennifer Weldon
Left to Right: Dan Slessor, Alli Sullivan, Annie Jensen, Mia Clarkson, Jennifer Weldon

Professional Development and Contributions

In 2020/21, Patricia Cia served as the President for the Special Libraries Association - Canada. Lindsay Tripp and Alli Sullivan both served on the BC Library Association Board of Directors. Lindsay Tripp also commenced her one-year term as Chair of the BC Open Education Librarians group (BCOEL).

The pandemic shifted many professional development events online, allowing for easier access to learning opportunities for all library staff, who attended more than 60 online conferences or PD sessions throughout the year. In addition to sessions that honed or updated their skills for an online learning environment, library staff's PD attendance was heavily weighted to three categories: Indigenization, interculturalization, and mental health initiatives.

Library staff also organized and/or presented at numerous professional development events, including:

  • 2021 BCLA Virtual Conference
  • BC Academic Libraries Section (BCALS) winter meeting
  • BC/Alberta Fair Dealing Week 2021
  • BCNET Connect Technology Summit
  • Cascadia Open Education Summit
  • Online Information Literacy Instruction Show and Tell
  • Langara workshops and webinars on diverse topics ranging from open education to the H5P platform.

Library staff also work closely with future librarians and library professionals. This past year, librarians taught courses and delivered guest lectures at the UBC iSchool, participated in networking events with library students, and delivered workshops for students in the Langara Library Technician program. 

Intercultural Initiatives

As part of the Library's November 2018 all staff planning meeting, the team identified developing intercultural competencies among library staff as an organizational priority and an Intercultural Working Group was formed. Throughout 2020, the Intercultural Working Group continued their intercultural reading club initiative, during which staff members read and discussed Pulling Together: A Guide for Front-Line Staff, Student Services, and Advisors.