Experiences of American Library Exchange Participants

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GNARP Librarian Exchange Working Group > Experiences of American Library Exchange Participants

You were a... You did... Kind of library Name and city of the library Length of stay Year Contact person in the library Stipend Review or short description of experiences abroad E-Mail address and/or phone number
Librarian Abroad
Librarian abroad scholarship public library Las Vegas Clark County Library in Las Vegas

Phoenix Public Library, Phoenix Los Angeles Public Library, L.A.

four weeks 2003 Dan Walters Las Vegas Library Director
Tony Garvey Phoenix, Director
Bertelsman Foundation http://www.bertelsmann-stiftung.de/bst/en/media/Handreichung_040603.pdf
gudrun.kulzer@offenbach.de; gudrun.kulzer@web.de, +49 (0)69-8065-3254
Librarian abroad gave an invited paper at Deutscher Bibliothekartag 2005 academic library (University library, community college library, state library). Heinrich-Heine-Universität, Düsseldorf 1 week March 2005 Christine Gläser of Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg. grant from U. S. Mission to Germany I was invited to present a paper on the Information Commons, with is the topic of my book, The Information Commons Handbook (Neal-Schuman). Jens Lazarus and Christine Gläser requested travel grant and honorarium support for my trip from the U.S. Embassy / U.S. Mission to Germany and this was granted. Jens and Christine guided me around the city. This was a wonderful learning experience for me and I am still corresponding on the topic with Christine and with other professional contacts in Germany such as Dr. Andreas Degkwitz, who have both published further on this topic, as have I. If I were invited to speak in Germany again I certainly would do so. The only change I would make would be to route my flight through a London connecting flight rather than Paris.



office phone: 704.461.6740

Librarian abroad worked. school library. John F, Kennedy School Library in Berlin. 18 months 2007-2008 self no statement I found the job through IFLA net. kathleen.langan@wmich.edu phone:2695323802
Librarian abroad Goethe Institut study tour touring multiple libraries of different types Munich, Frankfurt, Wolfenbuttel, Berlin 1 week 2002 no statement The tour was generously paid for by the Goethe Institut See the article in the WESSWeb newsletter.

I also gave a presentation at the German DG at ALA.

sgwenzel@uchicago.edu phone:7737028448
Librarian abroad visited libraries and worked. academic and special libraries All libraries are in Berlin

Work - duplicate selection for my institution: Kunstbibliothek Visits: Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin
Ibero-American Institute
TU-Bibliothek: Bereichsbibl. Architektur u. Kunstwissenschaft
Philologische Bibliothek of Free University
Universität der Künste Berlin
Haus Amerika-Gedenkbibliothek

2 weeks 2009 Kunstbibliothek - Petra Ruppert, head of acquisitions and exchange stipend from BI-International
partial financial support from my employer, UT Libraries
http://www.bi-international.de/download/file/Bericht_USA_Gonzales_Bibliotheken_Berlin_2009.pdf Martha González Palacios

phone: 512.495.4645 martha.gonzalez@austin.utexas.edu

Librarian abroad participated in professional training. Amerika-Haus Berlin and Hamburg One day at each one. 2006 Nancy Rajczak The Amerika-Haus paid my expenses I was invited to give a presentation on information literacy to a group of German academic librarians and library-science students. Ca 20 in each group. In Berlin I recruited two other US academic librarian colleagues also to give presentations. All the presentations and the discussion were in German. In Hamburg I was part of a panel that Nancy Rajczak had selected, also inviting US library colleagues who could present and converse in German.

My colleagues and I prepared our remarks and power-point slides before leaving for Germany. If asked again, I would give a much shorter presentation and take more questions. Nancy Rajczak and her staff gave me very good information beforehand about the type of program, and the number and affiliations of the attendees. The experience was very much worth it -- I would like to do it again.

ganderso@umn.edu (612) 625-8161
Librarian abroad studied for the MLIS and worked as a librarian employed in two special libraries and interned in a public library Leo Baeck Institut, New York, NY
Goethe Institut New York, NY
Brooklyn Public Library, Brooklyn, NY
LBI: Oct 2003 - Nov 2005
GI: Apr 2004 - Nov 2005
BPL: Summer 2004
see left LBI: Renate Evers, Head Librarian
GI: Marilen Daum, then head of library
BPL: various
no statement LBI: The LBI houses the largest collection of German Jewish books and an extensive archive. Being bi-lingual and interested in German Jewish history made this library very interesting to me. The collection itself is highly interesting and the team was wonderful to work with.

GI: Again, being bi-lingual and needing part-time work during my MLIS studies, the GI library was a perfect fit. The team was great and the involvement in literary events a great experience.

BPL: Being interested in public service, I wanted to experience how was to work in an inner city public library. I was most interested in children's services and was able to run a few morning programs with the local kids and I got to help out at the reference desk as well as doing some behind the scenes work, such as weeding. BPL also offers good additional training where interns get tours of the main branch and introductory talks by staff members of the different areas.

Caroline Mavergames
Librarian abroad Study Grant archives Borsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels e.V. in Frankfurt. one week 1985 (notably Susanne Hauert). Stipend from UCLA ASCOR. Archival work in preparation for biography of Pierce Butler, entitled The Gospel of Scholarship (1992) no statement
Librarian abroad LIS faculty tour school library participated in the Goethe Institute LIS faculty tour June 2009 multiple people, main contact was Brigitte Dollegast, Goethe Institute Goethe Institute Review published in German in Buch & Bibliothek Debbie Rabina
Librarian abroad participated in a participated in a WESS German library tour WESS German library tour several different libraries no statement no statement no one contact travel stipend no statement rkusmer@nd.edu
Librarian abroad completed an internship. Library of Congress Library of Congress in Washington DC one month 1998 John Van Oudenaren, chief of the European Division no statement I had a great time at the Library of Congress! I worked with Predrag P. Pajic, refrence librarian for the South Slavic Collections in the European division. He showed me how a library of this magnitude works and it was exciting to follow him around. The work I did there was very rewarding, in addition to several daily tasks, I helped Mr. Pajic put together a bibliography of the library's South Slavic collections.
A professor at the University of Cologne (where I work) established the contact to Mr. Van Oudenaren whom he knew. I didn't receive any money and did the internship on my own vacation time.
Washington is a very expensive place. That was something I didn't know before I got there and should certainly figure into choosing a library or city for an internship.


Librarian abroad participated in professional training. Fortbildungsprogramm 1992 Fachhochschule fuer Bibliothekswesen in Frankfurt am Main 3 courses, on 3 different weeks. (I worked as a Verwaltungsangestellte at the University, in the law school when I lived there, I didn't work as a librarian.) 1991-1992 no statement no statement I applied for several jobs in libraries when I lived in Frankfurt and had many invitations to come interview. These were all courtesy interviews. They could not hire me, because I had no German qualifications, only an American library degree. But I enjoyed meeting librarians, getting library tours, and going through the interview process. (I was fluent in German.) I eventually got a job at the University, working in a low level administrative position in the law school. I sought out the Bibliothekschule to see if there were courses I could take, and they were very surprised indeed that I found them. Nothing like that had apparently happened before. The director agreed to let me take some continuing education courses (at no cost), which I think was a very big departure for them, so I am quite grateful. I had a blast in those courses, had fun meeting other librarians and library staff. I was quite disappointed in general at all the bureaucratic barriers in the public sector (where most library jobs are in Germany). I should say I was in Germany because my husband was there doing research, so I was improvising during my stay there. The experience was TOTALLY worth it, everyone should live and work abroad. dbrookin@uw.edu

phone: 206-685-0389

Librarian abroad 3-week study tour name and city 1. Bibliothek des Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut, Berlin
2. Kartenabteilung der Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin

3. Mittelamerikasammlung des Ethnologischen Museums, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
4. Kunstbibliothek, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
5. Teilbibliothek Romanistik der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
6. Philologische Bibliothek der Freien Universität, Berlin
7. Amerika-Gedenkbibliothek unit of the Zentral- und Landesbibliothek Berlin

3 weeks 2008 1. Peter Altekrüger, Library Director, and Dr. Ricarda Musser, Assistant Library Director.
2. Wolfgang Crom, Head of the Map Department.
3. Dr. Maria Gaida.
4. Dr. Joachim Brand, Assistant Director.
5. Jörg Plönzke, Librarian.
6. Monika Diecks, Head Librarian.
7. Paul S. Ulrich, Librarian for Information Services.
Funds for study tour by Bibliothek & Information International (BI-International), a standing committee of the Bibliothek & Information Deutschland (BID, Library and Information in Germany - the Federal Union of German Library and Information Associations). http://www.bi-international.de/download/file/Bericht_USA_Benavides_Finding_Latin_America_in_Berlin_2009.doc a.benavides@mail.utexas.edu

phone: 512-495-4588

Librarian abroad worked. academic library (University library, community college library, state library). Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek Bonn (ULB)
Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
6 months 2010-2011 Library Director I am earning a salary. My position as Exchange Librarian at Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek Bonn is not part of an exchange program. A librarian that works in the library and lives in my neighborhood helped me to translate my resume and asked in the Human Resources Department how I could apply for a position at the library. I sent my cover letter and résumé directly to the Library Director and then interviewed (speaking only German) with the Director and 4 librarians who had possible projects for me. At the end of the interview, I was offered a 6 month half-time Exchange Librarian position (my two small children are in Kindergarten).
What would I do differently if I were to go abroad again?

I would have spent more time improving my German beforehand. Although “jeder kann mich verstehen”, I wish that I could speak and write better.
Was the experience abroad worth it?
Absolutely! I have learned so much and the chance to exchange ideas and experiences with my colleagues has been valuable in both directions.

Joani Shedivy
Librarian abroad worked. library school National Administration School in Tunis;
University of Hong Kong
1 year;
10 weeks
Ann Nahkli (?), program director;
James Henri, progam director
Paid for Peace Corps as instructor;
Paid by University of Hong Kong as visiting professor
I was invited to teach library science courses at the University of Hong Kong in summer 2005 (collection development, and research methods). I also served as the external examiner of the Diploma for Teacher Librarianship program in Hong Kong. At the International Association of School Librarianship conference, July 8-12 in Hong Kong, I was a featured speaker. I presented a workshop on information literacy assessment and presented two papers: Web sites on technology for girls and Social-emotional maturity impact on information literacy.
To plan ahead, I read their university documents and website, emailed the contact persons, and read up on Hong Kong. I also had to prepare extensive documentation for a work visa. I was largely on my own, and gave them a checklist to help them support visiting faculty. The experience was well worth it.
Librarian abroad Goethe Institut Study tour Combination of Public, State libraries, publishers Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Munich;
Institut fuer Zeitgeschichte, Munich;
Piper Verlag; C.H. Beck Verlag, Munich;
K.G. Saur Verlag, Munich;
Deutsche Bibliothek, Frankfurt;
International Resource Center (Amerika Haus), Frankurt;
Bibliothek des Deutschen Filmmuseums, Frankfurt;
Deutsches Architektur Museum, Frankfurt;
Herzog August Bibliothek, Wolfenbuettel;
Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, Preussischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin;
Aufbau Verlag, Berlin
Each institution for portion of a day. 2002 Marilen Daum, Goethe Institut was our tour leader Goethe Institut/WESS members stipend http://www.mwdrive.de/uh/goetheRT_Wynn.pdf Debra D. Wynn
Senior Cataloger,
Rare Materials Section,
Library of Congress
(202) 707-4132
Librarian abroad worked. academic library (University library, community college library, state library). John F. Kennedy-Institut fuer Nordamerikastudien, Freie Universitaet Berlin 6 months 1994 director ALA Library Fellows Program The library had an opening in the fellows program. I was asked if I wanted to apply. Most of the preparations involved the logistics of where I would stay, etc. The main thing I would do differently is learn more about the operations of German libraries, such as cataloging practices. The experience was definitely worth it. John Hostage;
Library Student Abroad
Library student abroad completed an internship. academic library (University library, community college library, state library). W.E.B. DuBois Library, University of Massachusetts at Amherst 4 months 2007 Associate Director for Library Services no statement Although preparations for the internship (obtaining a visa, finding a place to stay, etc.) meant a bit of an extra effort, I can honestly say it was worth it. I received a lot of support in the preparations both from W.E.B. DuBois Library (in particular, my internship coordinator) and the coordinator of the German LIS program (MALIS, FH Köln) for which the internship was done. The visa application was done through a German agency specialized in these things, which did cost an extra fee but meant that everything went rather smoothly.
The staff at the library really went out of their way to make my stay more interesting and instructive than I could ever have hoped for! They readily included me in their everyday tasks and duties and I was able to gather a lot of hands-on experience, e.g. at the reference desk, in scholarly communications, or in cataloging. More than three years have passed since my stay, but I still benefit from the things I learned and experienced at DuBois.
Library student abroad studied a semester abroad. special library Baden-Wuerttembergische Landesbibliothek, Stuttgart
1969 to 1974 as researcher
Five years as a user. It is next door to the Hauptstaatsarchiv on Konrad-Adenauer-Strasse, Stuttgart.

I also used the Tuebingen Universitaets-Bibliothek during that time, 1969 to 1974.

1969-1974 I worked with Prof. Hansmartin Decker-Hauff in Wuertembergische Landesgeschichte, Univ. Tuebingen. DAAD - 2 years, also an American two-year Danforth Foundation stipen (Kent Fellowship). I selected Tuebingen/Stuttgart after the Russian invasion of Czechoslovakia in August 1968 - we were uncertain of being able to get me into East German libraries and archives in Dresden and Leipzig. Hence I went to Tuebingen with no real advance preparation. Hansmartin Decker-Hauff took me under his wing ("Pfarrerkinder verstehen einander") and helped me select my ultimate doctoral dissertation topic, "Prince Eberhard and His Preceptors: the education of princes in sixteenth-century Wuerttemberg" I did the research in the Hauptstaatsarchiv Stuttgart and Tuebingen Univ. Archiv, with help from the Univ. Bibliothek Tuebingen and the Baden-Wuerttembergische Landesbibliothek in Stuttgart. And that was my German archival and university and library experience. reithl@georgetown.edu
phone: (202) 687-7633 off.
Library student abroad completed an internship. public library Ann Arbor District Library (AADL) in Ann Arbor, MI 3 months 2006 The person who was then interim head of youth department. She is now no longer with the AADL, but became director of another Public Library in MI. A small amount given by my german hometown and the institution I was working for at the time, because I was doing the internship in the sister city of my hometown. I first met the director of the AADL when she came to my hometown as a member of the american sister city delegation to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the town twinning. It was then agreed that I should go and spend a part of my practical semester at the AADL. Because the were so many personal connections between these two towns, it was no problem for me to find a host and I had much help for preparing to stay there (visa, financial support etc.).

I had a great time there - the internship was a wonderful experience. I have been working with a great team and learnt much about the differences in cultural behavior in Germany and the US and the effect that it has on libraries and library services.


GNARP Librarian Exchange Working Group > Experiences of American Library Exchange Participants

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