Category: Public Librarians Symposium

118 - Engaging the University Community Utilizing a National Library of Medicine Traveling Exhibit

Tuesday, May 22
2:00 PM – 2:55 PM

Objectives: To contribute to the wellness and intellectual life on campus, the Library booked the NLM Harry Potter’s World exhibit. Campus Libraries created 14 events/exhibits to compliment the panels. The project goals were to provide historical context to renaissance science and medicine through the lens of Harry Potter, and to use Harry Potter as a touchstone to discuss current medical topics.

Two campus libraries shared the exhibit, which spent three weeks at each location. All students were invited to participate regardless of their library affiliation. The 15 events/exhibits included two opening receptions with the campus mascot, three lectures (two from campus faculty, and a keynote speaker from an outside organization), a Harry Potter medical bibliography, a movie night, six educational curated displays, a streaming video display, and a therapy horse demonstration. A complimentary online exhibit mirrored the physical displays and included video of the lectures. The libraries partnered with student groups, student affairs, facilities, public safety, and public affairs to help organize, fund, facilitate, and promote the programs. Marketing efforts included a marauder’s map (take-away program flier), posters, table tents for the cafeteria, digital display slides, announcements via the student intranet, advertisements in the library newsletter, and targeted departmental advertising.

By far, the four most attended and well-received events were the therapy horse meet-and-greet (care of magical creatures), the Harry Potter movie night, the opening receptions, and the Poisons lecture (defense against the dark arts). The library-curated exhibits were all well received, with anecdotal commentary to the coordinators such as, “very educational,” “super interesting,” and “Oh! I love this!” The National Library of Medicine exhibits were well attended, with student, faculty, and staff interest (the library gate counts reflect the increased foot traffic). University members brought their families to events and exhibits as well.

Students, staff, and faculty of all ages were excited, engaged, and able to relate to the content. One professor allowed students to go to a lecture in lieu of class. Other allowed students to use the events as part of a course requirement. The two library directors appreciated database advertisement and the opportunity to redirect students to library resources for further information. This was a worthwhile project that added to the university community. We will likely do something like this again in the future, now that we have best practices for our institution.

Keywords: NLM, exhibit, university, community, engagement, interprofessional, students

Rachel C. Lerner

Research & Instruction Librarian
Edward & Barbara Netter Library
Hamden, Connecticut

Rachel Lerner, MSLS, AHIP
Research & Instruction Librarian
Liaison to the School of Nursing & the Department of Social Work
Quinnipiac University, Hamden, CT

Gina M. Addona

Access Services and Document Delivery Supervisor
Edward and Barbara Netter Library
Hamden, Connecticut

Gina Addona, MLS is the Access Services and Document Delivery Supervisor at the Edward and Barbara Netter Library (the medical and health sciences school library) at Quinnipiac University. She manages the circulation, course reserves, document delivery/interlibrary loan operations and the student workers. Gina earned her MLS from Southern Connecticut State University. Before coming to Quinnipiac, Gina worked for over 20 years at Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Company as the Library Manager of Client Services.

Lynn Sawyer

Technical Services Assistant
Arnold Bernhard Library
Hamden, Connecticut