A New Evolution in Science Collaboration

A New Evolution in Science Collaboration

Erica Segraves (Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61350-387-4.ch006
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The Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library is a single site, medium sized, municipal library in Broomfield, CO. After receiving an initial matched grant of $50,000 from the Sandoz US Foundation ten years ago to build the Sandoz Science and Education Center located on the first floor of the library, the continued partnership with Sandoz Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has evolved into the development of a Science Task Force composed of scientists in the community willing to volunteer their time to bring science programming to the library. This chapter details the initial development and subsequent growth of these partnerships as well as how the evolution of this collaboration has impacted the Young Adult Department science programming and education services. The chapter also focuses on developing collaborations with local companies as well as finding volunteers in the community. Procedural information regarding the recruiting and retaining of volunteers as well as key points in program planning, executing, and evaluating are also shared.
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The Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library is a single site, medium-sized, municipal library in Broomfield, CO, a northern suburb in the Denver-Boulder metro area with a population of about 55,000. Given its amazing view of the mountains and a strong support system for the library’s Young Adult department, I was immediately drawn to working there and accepted a position as a new graduate holding a Master’s of Librarian and Information Science (with a certification in information management). Prior to becoming a librarian at Mamie Doud, I had worked as a project manager for a technology in education non-profit organization and was therefore used to managing and communicating with a team of 12 people in an organization that had 60 employees. When assigned the task of devoting part of my 28-hour work week to being the library liaison to our Science Task Force, I felt thrilled about the opportunity to possibly expand the program. What has now become one of our most popular programming series has gone through quite an evolution that began with one 400 square feet of space and ended with nine monthly programs that are not only full but often have waitlist of more than ten participants.

After the initial grant award and the creation of the Sandoz Science and Education Center, a Science Task Force was established to help the library staff solidify the role of science programming in the library. The Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library Science Task Force is a community-based group of citizens formed to share information and combine resources to promote science and technology knowledge and literacy. This includes activities and events aimed at expanding knowledge, investigating technology, practicing modern science, and informating commuity members of the well of technology and resource in Colorado.The group accomplishes these goals through development, presentation, and sponsorship of programs and events for young people ages 9-14 years of age and for general audiences in the communities of the Denver-Boulder corridor of Colorado.The Science Task Force continues to reach out to the surrounding communities and businesses and find partnership opportunities that help us achieve our goals of providing free, quality science programming to our community’s youth. We currently have three types of collaboration: programming in collaboration with Sandoz, programming in collaboration with the Mamie Doud Eisenhower Science Task Force, and programming in collaboration with community expert volunteers.

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