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June 2009, Volume 1, Issue 6

Check your Fall Calendars!

Festival of Books
Oct. 2-3 in Deadwood

SDLA Annual Conference
Oct. 7-9 in Aberdeen

Be Creative @ Your Library or From Home

Featured e-Resources of the Month

Why Didn't I Think of That?

Great ideas from our fellow librarians.

Library Development

Professional Development Registration is Now on escWorks

Beginning this month the South Dakota State Library will launch escWorks, the Department of Education’s registration site for professional development. You will still be able to find professional development opportunities on the State Library’s calendar. For all events where registration is maintained by the State Library you will be redirected to escWorks. You will also be able to search escWorks for library related workshops and events.

escWorks requires that you register for an account before you can sign-up for events. Having a personal account will allow you track the amount of credit you have received from professional development events. You will also be able to subscribe to e-mail notifications about sessions that may be of interest to you.

The State Library staff has created the following instruction sheet to walk you through the process of creating an escWorks account. The instruction sheet is also located on the State Library’s Web site.


Libraries Provide Vital Resources in Tough Economic Times

Libraries are the heart of a community. Right now, libraries are in a perfect position to not only show their value to their community, but to also show governing officials how vital a library is in tough economic times. Many libraries across the nation are promoting themselves as a one-stop-shop for information in response to the current economic crisis, creating Web pages with links to job resources, unemployment forms, and community resources, as well as putting together job search kits like those at Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library for patron check out.

It’s not just about resume building and how/where to search for jobs. Patrons in today’s economy are also looking for ways to save money. Libraries can help with that too by highlighting gardening resources for those who want to grow vs. buy, do-it-yourself resources, and just functioning as they always have by providing materials to more and more people who are borrowing rather than buying.

Patrons who have lost jobs may need information on health insurance and unemployment benefits. TheCanned has information for all states as well as job links. If patrons have questions regarding money matters after a job loss, they can visit the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority page.

In South Dakota, the Rapid City Public Library, in response to local layoffs and business closings, is highlighting a number of different resources via their new Employment Resources Web page.

According to John Pappas, Outreach Services Coordinator, RCPL wanted to be a clearinghouse for community information. Staff contacted local career centers, community groups, and the SD Department of Labor. As a result, the DOL and SD School of Mines Career Center offered classes in resume development, interviewing skills and online resources for resume posting, job search Web sites and career counseling. Classes were held at RCPL’s North and Downtown locations. In addition, RCPL is using 2.0 tools to suggest useful books and Web sites, and was recently listed as one of the “Top 100 Librarian Tweeters” for using Twitter to share resources such as the employment page.

One of the many resources RCPL highlighted was the Learning Express Library practice tests and skill building courses made available to library patrons statewide and funded by the SD State Library.

People are looking for a comfortable, non-threatening place to plan for the future after a job loss, and the library is a place where they can get the information they need, visit with helpful and encouraging staff, and come away with a new outlook on their situation. To begin compiling resources for your own patrons, visit the many links included in this article.

Additional employment resource ideas:


certification, professional development, webinar, economy, employment, websites


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The Cornerstone monthly e-newsletter is created by the South Dakota State Library. For more information on how to be a part of this newsletter, please contact us via e-mail with your questions and ideas.