MAC Scholar Award Reflections

Peggy Gross, Assistant Director of Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Libraries was this year’s recipient of the MAC Scholar Award. Here are her thoughts on attending the MAC Annual Meeting for the first time.

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I am deeply honored to receive the 2010 MAC Conference Scholar Award. While in Chapel Hill I attended many thoughtful paper and poster presentations on interesting topics that ranged from Health Information Literacy to Data Collection for Health Information Outreach. I was excited to attend Friday’s eScience Symposium. As a result of Neil Rambo’s seminar, I now have a stronger grasp of the future roles that librarians may and should hold as key players in the growing domains of eScience and bioinformatics.

However, the highlight of the conference was simply the great time I had getting to know the warm and friendly MAC members. In my current position as supervisor of a small medical school library, I do not have the luxury of interacting on a daily basis with other librarians; attending MAC’s welcome reception was socially and professionally refreshing.

Shannon Jones, Associate Director, Research & Education at VCU’s Tompkins-McCaw Library, kindly volunteered to be my conference mentor. Shannon introduced me to many people, and my conference experience was much more enjoyable because of her efforts. I’d forgotten about how fun “networking” can be, and I’m already looking forward to seeing everyone again Richmond!

I co-presented a conceptual paper called “Sister, Sister: Rethinking Sense-Making Theory through Consciousness-Raising” and connected those concepts to breast cancer information seeking. MAC 2010 was also a new library experience for my co-author, Lindsay Currie. Though she is not a librarian, Lindsay was delighted and even surprised to present our paper amidst such a welcoming group. We have returned from the meeting inspired, and we have already begun to revise our presentation for possible journal publication.

Thank you, MAC, for allowing me to have such a wonderful and meaningful conference experience. Additionally, thank you Ryan Harris – I appreciate your instant responses to my questions related to the Scholar Award.

Peggy Gross

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