5 Things to Know about the Library’s Transition to Purdue

The faculty and staff at Helmke Library are pleased to share new information about our transition to Purdue. We’re committed to making sure that you have the resources you need throughout the transition process. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Reserves, Document Delivery, and loans from the Helmke Library collection will remain available throughout our transition.
  2.  Items you have checked out from IU Libraries other than Helmke Library will be due on or before March 2, 2018.
    • You may renew these items, but the new due date will not extend beyond March 2. Items from Helmke Library will renew as usual.
    • IU may charge a replacement fee for these books if they are overdue at the end of the semester.
    • Not sure if you have items from other IU Libraries? The library associated with each book is listed in IUCAT. Here’s how to check:
      • Log in to IUCAT and select “My Account.”
      • Look for the library name and due date for each item.bookcapture
  3. If you need materials from other IU Libraries beyond the March 2 due date, contact your librarian as soon as possible.
    • The library has a plan in place to purchase copies of needed materials whenever possible.
    • Document Delivery is available for items we are unable to add to our collection.
    • The request delivery feature in IUCAT will be turned off after December 18.
  4. If there are any materials you need the library to purchase for spring or summer classes, contact your librarian.
    • The library will accept purchase requests until March 2, 2018.
    • Items requested for purchase after March 2 may be delayed until mid-summer when the new system is up and running.
  5. We look forward to the debut of a new catalog and discovery system next summer!

 Questions? Ask a librarian or contact Alexis Macklin, Dean of Helmke Library.



Healing Words Book Launch – You’re Invited!

Helmke Library is proud to invite you to the book launch for Healing Words, an anthology of creative writing by IPFW students, faculty, and staff.

hwcoverHealing Words is based on the work of IPFW’s Ladder Upp Creative Writing Group. Sponsored by IPFW Military Student Services, the group focuses on assisting veterans, military members and other survivors tell their personal stories as they heal from Post Traumatic Stress.

Join contributing authors Denise Buhr, Dawn Cunningham, John Hannigan, J. Vaughan, and ML Wissing at the Healing Words Book Launch on Tuesday, November 7, from 4-5 PM in Helmke Library room 112 on the IPFW campus. Refreshments will be provided.

Healing Words is available for purchase in paperback or Kindle format on Amazon, and copies will also be available for purchase at the event. For more information, contact vauganj@ipfw.edu.

Meet Sue Skekloff

This is the sixth part in a series that will help you get to know your Helmke librarians. View previous posts in this series here. Do you have a question for us? Visit our Ask-A-Librarian page and be in touch!

Which departments do you work with on campus?

Psychology, Organizational Leadership, Sociology, Women’s Studies, and English

What are your other major duties?

Training Coordinator, Writing Program Liaison, and joining library resources with new courses and programs as a member of the Curriculum Review Committee.

What parts of being a librarian do you enjoy the most?

Great detective work! I love students and the academic setting.

What are some of your research interests?

I research library instruction and I’m working on documenting the life of an early Fort Wayne surgeon. I’m interested in both biography and genealogy.

Is there any resource that you particularly love? Why?

I love PsycINFO! It’s a great resource, consistently indexed,  and has great history behind it–its structure actually reflects the discipline of psychology!

What do you like most about libraries in general?

Free books!


Sue’s cat, Abigail.

Do you have any hobbies?

Observing, reading, and watching anything about wild or domestic animals. I also hike, do some birding, and have volunteered in several therapeutic riding programs.

Any fun travel stories you’d like to share?

I love Yellowstone – I once took a picture of a grizzly at way too close of a range! I visited Chaco Canyon, too. The history of the place is fascinating and I narrowly escaped a flood on the way out.

Learn more about Sue and her favorite resources on our Facebook  page this week!

Meet Denise Buhr

This is the fifth part in a series that will help you get to know your Helmke librarians. View previous posts in this series here. Do you have a question for us? Visit our Ask-A-Librarian page and be in touch!

DeniseWhich departments do you work with on campus?

Communication and Journalism, Fine Arts, Music, Theatre, and Visual Communication and Design

What are your other major duties?

ARCHIVES!; Military Science, and Military Student Services; Children’s Literature

What parts of being a librarian do you enjoy the most?

I learn new things all the time, from the questions students ask, from book reviews, from higher ed blogs and newsletters. There’s always something I didn’t know about before and now I do. Sometimes it makes me want to know more and I work at a place where I can find out what I don’t know.

What are some of your research interests?

I don’t have “research” interests in the usual sense but I do have creative research areas for new plays, currently the Civil War and how people in Indiana responded; and one set in the Vietnam era. (Not that I’m a war-minded person usually but I am a veteran so maybe that isn’t so weird.)

What are some of your favorite books? Is there one you particularly recommend for students?

Almost anything by Agatha Christie. Yes, I have read EVERYTHING (more than once) but she’s my go-to for relaxation.

Is there any resource that you particularly love? Why?

Academic Search Premier is my favorite starting point because it covers almost anything and I’m often looking for almost anything. I also love the Historical New York Times. I do a lot of historical research for my plays and it’s the best for point-in-time information.

Do you have any hobbies?

Baking and baking and baking! And I love sharing what I bake with others.  That’s really why I do it.

Any fun travel stories you’d like to share?

I went to Oberammergau, Germany for the Passion Play in 1990. And to England in 2002.  I felt like I was in a Christie novel.  Besides seeing all the sights in London, we went to Oxford and Cambridge, saw “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in Stratford, another play on the West End, ate at the Cheshire Cheese (which is mentioned in a Christie book), and drank sherry at a village pub.

Learn more about Denise and her favorite resources on our Facebook  page this week!

Meet Shannon Johnson

This is the fourth part in a series that will help you get to know your Helmke librarians. View previous posts in this series here. Do you have a question for us? Visit our Ask-A-Librarian page and be in touch!

ShannonWhich departments do you work with on campus?

Nursing, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Math, Dental, Hospitality, and Human Services

What are your other major duties?

  • Working with campus partners and the community to advocate for inclusive education for people with disabilities.
  • Partnering with CELT on plagiarism prevention workshops to help faculty design assignments that reduce the likelihood of plagiarism.
  • Training faculty and graduate students on citation management software and helping to identify quality publication outlets.  One of the original members of the IPFW faculty writing circle.

What parts of being a librarian do you enjoy the most?

Helping people  – it’s as simple as that. I enjoy that moment when people ‘get’ something, figure it out.  We get to see that daily.  Being a librarian means you get the best of both worlds – I get to help students grow and learn, and I get to practice all the OCD organizational skills a person could want.

What are some of your research interests?

Folksonomies in fandom – specifically how fanfiction sites have grown and organized information, utilizing conventions taken from print zine days and adapting as technology grows. The way the language of the fandom has developed is fascinating.  I am also the volunteer archivist for the local Girl Scout council, and I work on preserving the 100 years of women’s history contained in our collection.

Is there any resource that you particularly love? Why?

Cinahl rarely fails me. It’s well organized and has wide coverage.

Do you have any hobbies?

  • I have two cats, Slyther and Gryfin – yes I did that on purpose.
  • I enjoy gardening in the summer and baking in the winter.  I volunteer with the Girl Scouts as an Adult Learning Facilitator and volunteer archivist, but I specialize in outdoor training.  I love sharing my passion for nature with leaders who can take what they learn back to their girls.
  • I am also a Board Member for League for the Blind and Disabled which helps to keep me up to date on disability advocacy and keeps me connected to the community.
  • In my spare time I am Fan fiction author. I have stories in Star Trek, Harry Potter, Sherlock Holmes, and a few other fandoms.  I started writing in 2001 and while I don’t have nearly as much time these days I still post regularly.


Learn more about Shannon and her favorite resources on our Facebook page this week!



Fall Break Hours and More

Happy Fall Break!

Here’s a friendly reminder about Fall Break hours:

  • The library will be closed on Saturday and Sunday, October 7-8.
  • We’ll be open Monday and Tuesday, October 9-10, from 8 AM until 5 PM.
  • Normal hours will resume on Wednesday, October 11!

Additionally, library and campus IT personnel will be completing updates to our catalog this weekend. We expect that IUCAT will experience some downtime. Here are some alternative places to search:

Need some help? Stop in next Monday or Tuesday, or email ref@ipfw.edu!

From all of us at Helmke Library, have a wonderful break!

Banned Book Week: By the Numbers

It’s Banned Book Week, and Helmke Library is still celebrating our freedom to read all kinds of books – even those that have been challenged or banned.

bbwUpdated infographic_Top 10 for 2016_0

Click to enlarge image. Artwork courtesy of the American Library Association.

What’s the difference between a challenged book and a banned book?

According to the American Library Association:

A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group.  A banning is the removal of those materials.  Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others.  Due to the commitment of librarians, teachers, parents, students and other concerned citizens, most challenges are unsuccessful and most materials are retained in the school curriculum or library collection.

Helmke Library provides access to books and information regardless of an item’s status as “challenged” or “banned.” Of course, our librarians are always happy to discuss how to evaluate books and to recommend the best sources for your needs. However, we will staunchly support your intellectual freedom and your right to read without censorship.

Join us this week on the library’s first floor to have your own “Blind Date with a Banned Book.”

Go on a Blind Date with a Banned Book!

BBW17 Web Banners (2)

Artwork courtesy of the American Library Association

Libraries nationwide are celebrating our freedom to read during this year’s Banned Books Week, September 24-30. The American Library Association explains Banned Books Week this way:

By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship. The books featured during Banned Books Week have all been targeted with removal or restrictions in libraries and schools. While books have been and continue to be banned, part of the Banned Books Week celebration is the fact that, in a majority of cases, the books have remained available. This happens only thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, students, and community members who stand up and speak out for the freedom to read.

Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community – librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types – in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

Helmke Library is celebrating Banned Books Week by offering IPFW community members a Blind Date with a Banned Book.  At a table inside the library’s first floor entrance, choose from a selection of books labeled not by title or author, but with the reason the book was challenged or banned. Check out the book to discover what inspired each attempt at censorship.

Mostly light reading fiction, these books are a great way to relax while at the same time affirming the exchange of ideas that make democracy and our society prosper.  Some examples of challenged books included in our Blind Date selections are Harry Potter, The Kite Runner, Brave New World, and James and the Giant Peach – and many others you will know and likely love.  Stop by the library and check one out!

Meet Sarah Wagner

This is the first part in a new series that will help you get to know your Helmke librarians. Do you have a question for us? Visit our Ask-A-Librarian page and be in touch! 

Sarah Wagner is Helmke Library’s Engineering librarian.

What departments do you work with on campus?

Civil & Mechanical Engineering, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Computer, Electrical, & Information Technology, Manufacturing & Construction Engineering Technology, and Computer Science

What are your other major duties?

Scholarly Communications & Library Social Media Manager

What are your favorite things about Fort Wayne?

DeBrand’s Chocolates! And the River Greenway (to balance out the chocolates).

What do you love about being a librarian?

I love working one-on-one with students.  In my senior year of college, I realized I was having the most fun helping a friend who was struggling with a research project.  Over many late nights and lots of caffeinated beverages, I grew to love research and helping others better define and find what’s they’re looking for – which is one of many things a librarian does. It’s still my favorite part of my job!

What are some of your research interests?

I’m really interested in understanding how students do research for their assignments and how they experience using library resources such as databases and the website. I’m very interested in finding ways to make the library’s instruction program and resources better suited to student needs and more user friendly. I’m also fascinated by a number of scholarly communications issues, such as open access publishing and predatory journals.

What are some of your favorite books?

So many! Two of my all-time favorites are The Shadow of the Wind and The Night Circus. And, of course, Harry Potter.

Is there any resource that you particularly love? Why?

My all-time favorite database is definitely Opposing Viewpoints – I love how it highlights the different perspectives on controversial issues.  I wish I had had access to this database when I was in high school and college, it would have saved me a lot of time!  Any time a student comes to me and explains that they need sources arguing from different sides of an issue, this is my go-to database.  In addition, when I’m working with engineering and technology students, I like to use Compendex, which offers one of the broadest searches on science and engineering literature available.

Do you have any hobbies or fun travel stories you’d like to share?

In addition to reading too much, I enjoy cooking, drinking tea, and hiking.

Almost eight years ago now, I traveled with my family to Shanghai, China for my oldest brother’s wedding.  My brother and sister-in-law had a traditional Chinese wedding, which included my brother riding a pony!  (I’ve got pictures to prove this!)  Overall, the trip was really fascinating on many levels and I’d love to go back.

Learn more about Sarah and her favorite resources on our Facebook  page this week!

Purdue Transition Information

As many of you are already aware, due to the pending realignment, the Helmke Library will be transitioning from the Indiana University library system to the Purdue University library system. I wanted to take this time to share updated information and assure you that we are making every effort to maintain access to both Purdue and Indiana library resources.

At some point in the near future, our borrowed materials from Indiana University will move from intercampus to interlibrary loans as we will no longer be on the IUCAT system; however, we will still have access to IU resources, as they will have access to ours, via Interlibrary Loans.

The new online catalog will be ready to go by late spring 2018. We strongly encourage faculty to start familiarizing themselves with Purdue’s library catalog and also suggest faculty learn to use WorldCat as a comprehensive catalog. There are titles that Purdue West Lafayette won’t have that we will need to purchase and WorldCat can help us find those titles. We will host tutorials and workshops during the coming fall semester to assist in educating people on both the new catalog system and WorldCat.

For the future, e-resources – including journal databases – are currently being negotiated. We are working to ensure there is very little, if any, disruption to access and at the conclusion of these negotiations, we will have the same access as the main campus in West Lafayette. When the catalog goes live in January 2018, our faculty will be able to borrow any Purdue University book with the same rights and privileges as the faculty members on the main campus, allowing you to order directly and have the materials shipped to our campus library.

Key points to remember during the transition:

  • There will be no loss of access to resources.  Both Purdue and Indiana have been working with our campus to help find the best ways to accommodate our needs.
  • We are pro-actively buying books and ordering the titles our faculty currently have on loan from Indiana University for the Purdue Fort Wayne library. When they arrive, our faculty will be notified and we can exchange the Indiana University books for the Purdue Fort Wayne books.
  • Books that are being requested via interlibrary loan will be considered a high priority for purchase.

I thank you all for your patience during this time and if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me or any member of the library staff. We are here to serve as a resource to you and are more than willing to answer any questions you may have.

Alexis Macklin
Dean, Ph.D., Helmke Library