MyStudio Booth

The Library is moving forward with a new tool to enable students and faculty to create their own video content for online classes and other work. We are repurposing one of the former listening/viewing rooms in the Instructional Media Services and Distance Learning suite to carry out a test of this new service that we are calling MyStudio. The MyStudio Booth is a simple one button video recording setup that will capture a video image of the person as well as a computer display such as a Powerpoint presentation. MyStudio will allow users to create high-quality video projects without having to know anything about video cameras or editing. Faculty, staff or students will enter the room and insert their USB thumb drive into a Crestron HD recorder. After loading their presentation up on the computer, they simply hit the RECORD button. When finished, the user will hit the STOP button and remove the thumb drive. When the users exit the room, they will have a high quality HD MP4 video in hand to upload to Canvas or to play back in a classroom.

Our inspiration for this was a desire to enable students and faculty to create their own high-quality online content without the need for intervention or assistance by staff. Other institutions, such as Penn State with their One Button Studio, have invested in such technology on a large scale. While we don’t have the financial resources of a large institution, we do have talented and creative staff to enable us to support our students and faculty in the ways that they need today.

MyStudio can be used for practicing presentations for class, recording a lecture, conducting a mock job interview, or creating an online learning module. Stay tuned for the official opening of this new service with a day of special events to kick off a student video creation contest.

Whoever Saves a Life …

The Nelson Poynter Memorial Library, in partnership with the Florida Holocaust Museum, is pleased to host the traveling exhibit “Whoever Saves a Single Life… Rescuers of Jews During the Holocaust.” Displayed in the first-floor atrium of the Library from March 28 through April 24, the exhibit is free and open to the public all hours that the Library is open.


For more information on the exhibit, visit the web site of the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous and read about the exhibit at:

The Evolving Library

According to data available through the USF InfoCenter, USFSP has grown by most measures from 2009 to 2013. Student FTE has increased by 15.4%; Student Credit Hours (SCH) have increased by 15.5%; unduplicated student headcount has increased by 21%. In response to the greater number of students and increased SCH, the University has employed 30% more permanent and adjunct faculty.

Reflecting the growing number of students and the faculty to teach those students, the Poynter Library has also experienced growth in the demand for library services. During this same five-year time period, we have experienced an increase of 14% in visitors to the library and 4% in circulation activity. As the chart below shows, we have served 66% more students in class-specific instruction sessions and have had a significant increase in the participation in library-sponsored events – a 79% increase in the number of people reached through our special events. For a variety of reasons, there have been fewer student orientation sessions scheduled in the library. However, I and other librarians have been getting out across campus more and taking our orientations on the road, sessions that are not reflected in these statistics. Overall, we have provided 130% more instruction sessions, workshops and events and have served 56% more people through those events.


In spite of the increases in the number of students and faculty and the growing service demands, the number of librarians and library staff providing these core services has remained the same. The faculty-to-librarian/staff and student-to-librarian/staff ratio gets worse every year. (The only staffing area to see any increase has been in distance learning technical support (instructional designers to assist faculty in the design and implementation of online courses), positions which are funded wholly from the student fee for distance learning. Those services are not reflected in the above chart.)

Another area of service – reference and research assistance – has been evolving during this time period, as seen in the chart below. Fewer people are coming in for face-to-face assistance; instead, they are turning more to chat and virtual reference. While face-to-face reference assistance has decreased 41% overall (except for the intensive Research Assistance Program (RAP) sessions), there has been a 206% increase in virtual assistance.


During this time, the Library has been constantly evolving to meet the needs of today’s students and faculty.

In addition to the ongoing redesign of the library’s physical space (described in previous postings), we have completely redesigned the library’s virtual space, the web site. We have picked up a number of new services during these same years, such as: the USFSP Digital Archive, support for College faculty T& P preparation, and more events showcasing faculty and student research, to name just a few.

We are still responsible for checking materials in and out, processing interlibrary loans, building and maintaining collections to support the University’s research and instruction needs, liaising with a growing number of academic departments and programs, assisting with program accreditations, reviewing library collections and services in support of new courses and programs, serving on University and Faculty committees, and investing in our own research and professional development to ensure that we are able to provide the best service possible.

Our newest venture involves planning a program for managing research data to enable the University to be in compliance with new requirements from federal granting agencies for archiving and providing access to research data. We have just received an internal research grant to help us move forward in this area more quickly. Stay tuned here for more updates on this and other library initiatives.

And, as always, visit us in our physical or virtual spaces and give us your feedback.

The Redesign Continues

You will have seen more work underway in the fall of 2013 and the spring of 2014 to continue the transformation of the library into the kind of space we’ve heard that students want and need. In the fall, we officially opened the Jeanne and Bill Heller Scholars’ Lounge, a glass-enclosed quiet space on the first floor. This was possible thanks to the generous donation of funds from Dean of Education Bill Heller and his wife Jeanne and reflects their love of the students of USFSP and their belief that libraries are central to any academic endeavor.

    Scholars' Lounge

This spring, we have been given some additional funds from the University, supplemented by money from private donors, to purchase more furnishings. You will have noticed the newest additions to the library’s redesign: more technology-enhanced furnishings on the first, second and third floors, as well as some additional whiteboards.

    First floor workstation

There are new multi-seat workstations designed to provide comfortable work space for plugging in and connecting to wherever you need, as well as some new collaboration stations for group work. We are increasing the number of seats in the library, as well as seats that increase access to power. The first phase of the furniture has arrived, but we are still in the process of getting all the power and data connected.

    Second floor workstation

We have more changes coming. There will be more comfortable easy chairs – like those we already acquired last year for the first floor – strategically placed on the second and third floors.

We have moved an important collection in support of the College of Education’s teacher training programs into a spot with other collections on the second floor. The collection of books, kits, games, and media that teachers in training need to design their classroom experiences are now shelved appropriately and more easily accessible.

    Juvenile Fiction and Curriculum Collection

The second floor reading room of Instructional Media Services and Distance Learning is due for a significant redesign, starting with modifying old-style passive listening and viewing rooms to active video-creation spaces for students and faculty.

The guiding principles are to design spaces that are flexible and that support today’s students and today’s curricula. The library is not just an archive any longer – it is an active, collaborative space where we intend for all users to make connections with the resources and the people they need to be successful lifelong learners.

Read about earlier renovations here Library as Social Space

Welcome to the 2013/2014 Academic Year

The faculty and staff of the Nelson Poynter Memorial Library enthusiastically welcome you to the 2013/2014 Academic Year! We are here to help you and partner with you to make you as successful as possible, whether you are a student or a faculty member, are here for the first time or are returning for another great year.

Although we are facing budget challenges, along with everyone else, we want you to come check out the wide range of services we offer to each and every one of you, including:

  •  Friendly, professional staff and library faculty in a beautiful, ADA-compliant facility that is open 79 hours a week
  • The most beautiful spot on campus for studying, collaborating, or hanging out???????????????????????????????
  • Access to 300,000 print materials onsite and help checking them out at the Circulation Desk or through the self-checkout kiosk
  • The only open-use computing lab on campuslibrary_usage_dec2012 017
  • Access to over a million electronic resources from your office or home
  • Help navigating the print and electronic world of information
  • An extensive collection of archival and other special materials available for your research in Special Collections
  • Interlibrary loan access to the world’s libraries
  • Print and electronic collections on Reserve for classes
  • Assistive technology to assist students with physical challenges to be able to use library and course materials effectively
  • Laptops available for checkout and use in the Library
  • Wireless connectivity throughout
  • Technologically sophisticated group study and collaboration stations

    Collaboration station

    Students using one of the Collaboration Stations

  • A wide variety of individual and group study spaces – for both quiet and collaborative work
  • A soon-to-be-completed Scholars’ Lounge on the first floor for quiet study???????????????????????????????
  • Assistance designing or accessing hybrid or online courses
  • Training in the use of the Learning Management System for all your classes
  • Research assistance on any topic when you walk in, over chat or email, on the phone or by special appointment for more in-depth assistance
  • Instruction sessions tailored to your classes by faculty request
  • The USFSP Digital Archive in which to showcase your work and learn about the past, present, and future of the University
  • Assistance understanding copyright and preparing proper citations in your papers
  • A great space for hosting lectures and presentations (Poynter’s Corner)017
  • Classroom technology support
  • Great lectures and events for fun and edification???????????????????????????????
  • Exhibits created to inspire and coordinate with current events or issues
  • And much more

Check us out physically or virtually on our Website or on our Facebook page.

We are here for you!

Kudos to Special Collections Librarian, Jim Schnur

James Anthony Schnur, associate librarian for Special Collections at the Nelson Poynter Memorial Library and a member of the USF St. Petersburg faculty since February 2002, received the 2013 Award of Excellence from the Society of Florida Archivists (SFA) on May 9 at the organization’s thirtieth annual meeting, held May 7-10 in Tallahassee. A member of SFA since 1992, Schnur was recognized “for years of dedication to the archival profession in Florida and outstanding contribution to the preservation of Florida’s documentary heritage.”

Schnur received recognition for his work as a librarian at USFSP, his teaching and mentoring as an adjunct member of the faculty in the School of Information at USF Tampa, and his various efforts to promote and preserve local and Florida history. Often, these categories overlapped.

In the Poynter Library, Schnur manages Special Collections and University Archives, an area of the library that includes signature collections in local history, rare books, and the print and digital archives of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Since the fall 2003 semester, Schnur has supervised more than twenty-five fieldwork and independent student experiences for graduate students in the USF School of Information (formerly the School of Library and Information Science) as well as USFSP’s Florida Studies Program. With the Dean and several library faculty colleagues, Schnur has been instrumental in building the USFSP Digital Archive (

Schnur has regularly taught a graduate-level course in Archival Management in the School of Information since the fall 2008 semester. This course, an elective in the program, teaches students practical methods for preserving and managing archival collections in cultural heritage institutions. Schnur’s teaching and mentoring extend beyond the classroom. In addition to supervised fieldworks, four students have co-presented with him at regional conferences in Jackson, MS, and in Las Vegas, NV, since early 2012, and three of the six poster sessions offered at the SFA conferences in 2012 and 2013 were presented by students whose presentations were based upon projects completed in Schnur’s class.

The official historian for Pinellas County’s centennial (1912-2012), Schnur maintains an active involvement in many local and state cultural organizations, including the Pinellas County Historical Society. He is pleased that many of his students have not only gained practical experience in archives, but also have assumed leadership roles in such organizations. One of his former students, Sandra Varry, presently serves as vice president of SFA.

Kudos and congratulations to Jim for serving as such a strong role model and for playing such a pivotal role in preserving Florida’s documentary heritage. The Poynter Library is honored to have Jim as a member of its faculty.

Scholarly Support Services and Special Projects Librarian

I am delighted to announce that we will soon have a new librarian joining us in mid-September as the Associate Librarian for Scholarly Support Services and Special Projects.

Anthony (Tony) Stamatoplos received his M.L.S from Indiana University Bloomington and a M.A. in Anthropology from Washington State University. He has been a librarian at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) Libraries since 1994. He is also an instructor in the Indiana University Department of Information and Library Science and has been active in the Indiana Library Federation, the Association of College and Research Libraries of the ALA, the American Anthropological Association, and the Council on Undergraduate Research. He has an extensive list of publications and presentations and has co-authored several grants (including a successful $435,000 NSF CCLI grant) at IUPUI. When Tony interviewed here, we were all impressed with his vision, energy and creativity and we can’t wait for him to join us in the fall.