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Building Community One Book at a Time

Posted on: May 14, 2018

Topic(s): Updates, Events

Chuck and Dee Robinson to Present 'Building Community One Book at a Time' May 24

Longtime community members and local business owners Chuck and Dee Robinson will give a talk entitled “It Takes a Village Books: Building Community, One Book at a Time,” at Western Washington University from 4:00-5:00pm on Thursday, May 24 in Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th floor). The event is free and open to the public.

Since it opened in 1980, Village Books has grown from a small “mom and pop” store to a two-location enterprise employing fifty people. Even as it expanded, the business remained a fixture in Whatcom County with strong ties to the local community. The store’s founders, Chuck and Dee Robinson, will speak about their experiences running a successful, locally-owned bookstore for nearly four decades during a time of rapid change in the book industry. They will also discuss their decision to leave the historical records of the business to the Center for Pacific Northwest Studies, where the collection will be available for research by students, scholars and the public.

Originally both educators, Chuck and Dee Robinson fulfilled their dream of becoming bookstore owners in 1980. Since then, they have both been active in several book industry organizations and numerous local non-profits. The Bellingham Whatcom Chamber of Commerce named Chuck and Dee “Man of the Year” and “Woman of the Year” in 2016, and in 2017 they were honored with the Jack D. Rittenhouse award for outstanding contributions to the community of the book in the West.

This talk is offered as part of the Heritage Resources Distinguished Speakers program at Western Libraries. For more information about the event, please contact Ruth Steele, CPNWS Archivist, Ruth.Steele@wwu.edu, (360) 650-7747.


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Records Retention Schedules Now Available

Posted on: April 19, 2018

Topic(s): Updates, Events, Resources

Updated Records Retention Schedules Now Available

University Archives and Records Management is pleased to announce that on April 4, the State Records Committee approved updates to the University’s records retention schedules.

You can find the updated versions of the University’s general records retention schedules on the University Archives and Records Management website:

University General Records Retention Schedule

College and Academic Department General Records Retention Schedule

For copies of unique, office-level retention schedules (or to determine if your office has a unique schedule), contact University Records Management (x6654) or email Rachel Thompson.

In addition, University Archives and Records Management is holding two trainings this month, in honor of April being Records and Information Management Month. For more information about the trainings, or to sign-up for them, you can visit the WWU Training Portal. The next training will be about  Digital Records Management and will be held on April 24 at 10AM.

For more information about retention schedules or other services offered by University Archives and Records Management, please contact us at x6654 or email Rachel.Thompson@wwu.edu.


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Western Libraries Responds

Posted on: April 11, 2018

Topic(s): Updates, Events, Feature Stories

WWU holds event to replace vandalized books

This article is written by Mary Gallagher and is courtesy of the Office of Communications and Marketing at Western. It originally appeared in Western Today on April 10, 2018 and can be viewed here.

Members of the Western community who have responded to the destruction and vandalism of books in Western’s Jewish Studies Collection have replaced the books and grown the collection, illustrating the community’s resolve against acts of antisemitism and other forms of hate, bigotry and violence, said speakers at a Western Libraries event Tuesday morning.

“Whether campus is your home, or you live in Bellingham or beyond, we are all one community,” said President Sabah Randhawa. “We are united in opposition against these acts of antisemitic vandalism, and against all such acts of hatred and bigotry. This kind of cowardly action perfectly illustrates the nature of hate and bigotry, because it flourishes in darkness and withers when exposed to the light of reason and intellectual scrutiny.”

More than 250 students, faculty, staff and community members crowded into the Wilson Library Reading Room for the event, which was a response to acts of destruction and vandalism of books in Western’s Jewish Studies collection.

“The deliberate destruction of library books, along with hateful slurs written in them, constitutes a reprehensible, criminal act that will not be tolerated,” said Dean of Libraries Mark Greenberg. Tuesday's show of solidarity, along with replacing the books and adding to the collection, show that as a community, “we vigorously oppose acts of bigotry and hate against the Jewish community and against all minoritized and marginalized groups,” Greenberg said.

The destruction of the books was appalling and upsetting, Randhawa said, in part because “this particular activity occurred in our library, the heart of our institution – of any academic institution – and involved the destruction of the very objects of knowledge itself.”

As outlined in last year’s report from Western’s Taskforce on Preventing and Responding to Antisemitism, Randhawa said, all forms of racism, bias and hate are interconnected and must be fought on a united front.

“Democratic institutions and values are not automatically sustained,” he said. “One of the central mandates of education is to examine what it means to be a responsible citizen and to ensure that human values are appreciated, nurtured and protected. Silence and indifference to the suffering of others, or to the infringements of civil rights in any society, can perpetuate these problems.”

German Professor Sandra Alfers, director of the Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity, said that as someone who grew up in post-war West Germany, the destruction of books “conjures up particularly disturbing ghosts from the past.”

“Thanks to the support of many, our shelves in Wilson Library do not remain empty, and so we have replaced books that were destroyed and added traditional and new formats in written, oral and visual form to enhance our collection,” Alfers said. “More than 120 items have been added thus far, some of them not held by any other library in the state.”

But more work needs to be done, Alfers said. Hate crimes and violence against minority groups are on the rise in the U.S. as islamophobia, antisemitism, anti-immigrant sentiment and Holocaust distortion and denial are becoming more common around the globe.

“Reports can be shelved and forgotten,” Alfers said. “So, commit yourself to being engaged, to actively thoughtfully, and respectfully be building bridges, not walls, and creating much-needed change. To seek knowledge and to apply it. Therein lies your – our – responsibility as we stand up in unity to antisemitism, hate and bigotry.”


Read more: Western Libraries Responds


Spring Quarter TLA New Format!

Posted on: April 4, 2018

Topic(s): Updates, Events

Spring Quarter TLA Begins April 11

What does diversity mean to Western? Do safe spaces really exist? What does it mean to be educated? Join students, faculty, staff, and community members as they consider questions like these during spring quarter’s Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA) dialogue sessions. 

The TLA meets from 12-1:20 p.m. every other Wednesday and Thursday in Haggard Hall Room 222 beginning April 11 and 12.  This quarter, the TLA will explore a new dialogue format by asking a different question each week.

 TLA participants include students, faculty, staff, and community members, and everyone is welcome to participate. The TLA’s primary objective is to create a community of scholars who work together to enhance teaching and learning by providing:

  • a cross-disciplinary space for dialogue which explores how teaching and learning can be enhanced throughout the University and beyond.
  • a forum for fostering collaboration and bridging the gaps between students, staff, faculty, and community members.
  • a space that values diverse perspectives and works towards creating active communities.  
  • professional development resources and workshops that support both scholarly teaching and the scholarship of teaching and learning.

 

Participants consistently report that the TLA dialogue sessions provide a great way to connect with others outside of their disciplines and departments, and to learn more about Western’s teaching and learning culture. Many say it also gives them a chance to take a breath and just listen to what others, especially students, really think. The goals of each dialogue session are to share well-rounded views related to teaching and learning while encouraging the use of  listening to understand and appreciate differences , and promoting open-mindedness and mutual respect for diverse perspectives.  

For more information, see http://library.wwu.edu/tla.  To sign up for the TLA listserv, email TLA@wwu.edu. (Students: there is also an opportunity to participate in the TLA for LIBR 340 “Speaking and Listening” practicum credit. For more information, contact Shevell.Thibou@wwu.edu.)


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Western Libraries Responds to Antisemitism, Book Vandalism

Posted on: April 3, 2018

Topic(s): Updates, Events

New Additions to Library Collections & Invitation to April 10 Event

Since mid-March, the Western Washington University community has been grappling with the discovery of vandalized (and in some cases, destroyed) books within the Libraries’ Jewish Studies collection. While libraries are havens for expression and intellectual freedom, the targeted destruction of Jewish Studies materials because of their subject matter crosses the line from free speech into hateful conduct.  University Police are actively seeking to identify the individual(s) involved in these crimes and to deter further incidents.

In response to these antisemitic acts, the Libraries has replaced the damaged items and added new books to the collection. The University will hold an event at 10 a.m., Tuesday, April 10 to showcase the collection and to come together in a public display of solidarity and support for the rights of readers to access information. This public event will take place in the Wilson Library Reading Room and precedes Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day, which begins at sunset on April 11.

Western Libraries is proud to restore the vandalized content and to continue efforts to acquire new resources supporting Jewish Studies. These efforts reflect the Libraries’ ongoing commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and its mission to ensure that historically marginalized voices are well represented within our collections.

To that end, and prior to these antisemitic incidents, the Libraries has been actively acquiring content related to Jewish and Holocaust Studies in order to support both The Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity,  and Jewish Studies coursework at Western. Recent acquisitions include print books, e-books, digital primary source archives, children’s books, and special collections materials. Also of particular note is a donation from what was formerly the Northwest Center for Holocaust, Genocide and Ethnocide Education, and is now The Ray Wolpow Institue. These materials are discoverable through the Libraries’ OneSearch interface. Users can also browse the virtual Holocaust and Genocide Studies collection, a selection of materials that has been curated over the last several years.

To support the Libraries’ efforts to build and maintain diverse and inclusive collections, please consider donating funds (specify “for Jewish Studies materials”—or another subject area, if desired—in the additional gift instructions) and/or suggesting a specific title for purchase.


Read more: Western Libraries Responds to Antisemitism, Book Vandalism


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