Undergraduate Research Award

Brookens Library and the Friends of Brookens Library are excited to announce our Sixth Annual Undergraduate Research Award!

We here at Brookens believe that undergraduate research, scholarly, and creative activities are foundational components of a complete liberal arts education. The Brookens Library Undergraduate Research Award was created by Brookens Library to recognize and reward UIS undergraduate students whose academic work incorporates the use of Brookens Library’s collections and services and demonstrates exceptional information literacy skills.

In addition to recognition at UIS, the award includes a monetary prize sponsored by the Friends of Brookens Library.  This year the award has been expanded and now $1500 is up for grabs for work you have already done!

  • $500 for first place
  • $400 for second place
  • $300 for third place
  • $200 for fourth place
  • $100 for fifth place

The winners will be presented at the Student Technology, Arts & Research Symposium luncheon on April 17, 2020. 

Over the years, UIS students have submitted some truly amazing work to the Research Award. The breadth and depth of topics has been astounding and the quality of the research has been awe inspiring. As we open up submission forms for this year’s award, we look forward to seeing even more of our UIS students’ excellent work.

How to Apply

Application for the Brookens Library Undergraduate Research Award is a two-step process:

Step 1) Fill out the online application form here:  https://uofi.uis.edu/fb/sec/1048711

Step 2) One of the Brookens Librarians will contact you to arrange for you to electronically submit your materials using Box.

Respectfully, we request that you do not send in your project materials until instructed to do so.

Judging will be conducted by a panel of diverse faculty from varying disciplines using a scoring rubric you can find on the research award site.

You can learn more about judging, the award criteria, and past winners here: https://libguides.uis.edu/research_award   

The deadline to apply is April 6, 2020.

Meet the Team: Declan

Student Employee Declan

Name: Declan

Hometown: Crystal Lake, Illinois

Major: Financial Accounting

Status: Sophomore

What is your favorite thing about being a student at UIS?   I find the campus really relaxing in the summer and enjoy all the gardens and greenery. I like that this is a small school and a lot of people know each other, but the school is growing each year which is also good. Lastly, I feel like there is a lot of opportunity out here in Springfield.

What are your goals for the semester? I want to stay focused on school work and keep ahead of the curve. I want to work more and save my money instead of spending it. Lastly, I want to meet more people and make more friends.

If there were a reality TV show of your life, what would it be called? Why? The Campbell Curse, because we have an inside joke in our family that whenever something goes wrong it must have been the curse . So it would just go through out our daily lives watching small mishaps.

Are you involved in any clubs/activities/sports on campus? Or what are your hobbies? I like to practice my Muy thai. Go bowling with friends or watch movies and sometimes work on my motorcycle

What have you learned since working at the library? I’ve learned a lot since working here. I’ve learned how to desensitize the books, put things away correctly, where all the book drops are. Book drops are the best, because you get to enjoy some fresh air while walking around.

What are your post-graduation plans? Hopefully after graduation I will get an okay job and move either back home to Chicago or another big city, I enjoy Portland a lot. Then I’d like to buy a small ranch house and when I’m done paying it off I can start to rent it out. Then I’d definitely buy myself a new motorcycle and I promised my mom when I was little I would buy her a new car so lastly that’s what I’d do.

What is your favorite item from the Library of Things collection? Most likely the mixer, because Im not good at baking but its fun.

How to Charge Your Device

Are you tired of coming to campus only to realize that you have forgotten your phone charger at home? No worries, Brookens has got you covered.

Located on the main floor of Brookens, we have lockers with outlets and chargers inside them so you can lock your device and leave it while you work. If you need to charge your device and have it with you, we have a variety of chargers for laptops and phones available for checkout at the front desk.

If you are sitting down and need an outlet to plug your charger into, we have portable outlets located on the main floor that can be used on a first come, first serve basis.

Thank you for tuning in to this week’s How To Tuesday from the SPARK Team.

Upcoming Lunch & Learn Library Workshop Series

Brookens Library will be presenting a number of workshops and informative sessions on research tools and various scholarly communication topics in the Library Learning Center (BRK 230A) from noon to 1:00 pm on the dates below.

These workshops focus on the most popular citation tools or bibliographic management applications designed to help researchers and scholars organize their personal libraries of important articles, books, etc. as well as creating bibliographies. 

Some of the informative sessions will cover such topics as OER (Open Educational Resources), author rights, copyright, using citation tools to determine impact of your scholarship, and related scholarly communication topics.

Workshop Topics, Dates and Descriptions

Faculty Author Rights and Copyright
Thursday, February 27, 12 – 1pm
Follow-up to the UIS Faculty Author’s Festival Open providing more in depth information on copyright and methods/strategies to help faculty retain certain rights to their scholarship.

Overview of Citation Tools and Bibliographic Management Applications
Wednesday, March 4, 12 – 1pm
This session will demonstrate the basic features of the various bibliographic management applications (EndNote/EndNote Web, Zotero, Mendeley, etc.) as well as discuss the similarities and differences in helping choose the application right for you. Then, you can attend a later specific session on the tool that best meets your needs.

Open Educational Resources and How to Locate Open Textbooks and OA Resources
Thursday, March 12, 12 – 1pm
This session will discuss Open Educational Resources, Open Textbooks, and the Open Textbook Network, including how to locate and use these resources in place of expensive commercial offerings saving students monies and improving educational outcomes.

Open Access and Creative Commons Licensing
Thursday, March 26, 12 – 1pm
This session will discuss Open Access including how to publish openly as well as how to locate open access materials.  It will also discuss the basics of Creative Commons Licensing. 

EndNote and EndNote Web
Wednesday, April 1, 12 – 1pm
This session will cover EndNote and EndNote Web including specifics related to getting citations into the application and demonstrate using this tool to create bibliographies and organizing the important papers related to your research and scholarship.

Using Citation Tools and Other Metrics and Tools to Determine the Impact of Scholarship/Publications
Thursday, April 9, 12 – 1pm
Using Web of Science and other tools to help determine the impact of your scholarship.  How to set-up citation alerts, create ORCID profiles, and related topics.

Zotero Bibliographic Management Tool
Wednesday, April 15, 12 – 1pm
This session will cover the Zotero Bibliographic Management tool to organize your citations and create bibliographies. 

UIS’s Institutional Repository IDEALS – How to Use IDEALS to Share Research/Scholarship
Thursday, April 23, 12 – 1pm
Increase the profile and visibility of your scholarship by using UIS Institutional Repository to increase availability.  How to deposit items and track usage.

Mendeley Bibliographic Management Tool
Wednesday, April 29, 12 – 1pm
The Mendeley Bibliographic Management tool was recently purchased by Elsevier and works with Scopus and other databases.  This session will demonstrate how this tool works for creating bibliographies and managing citations.

If none of these times work for you and you’d like to learn more about one of these topics, contact any of our librarians here.

Meet the Team: Stephanie

student employee, Stephanie

Name: Stephanie

Hometown: Milton Keynes, England

Major: English

Status: Sophomore

What is your favorite thing about being a student at UIS?   My favourite thing about being a student at UIS is how small the campus is. I love being minutes away from my friends and seeing familiar faces around campus; I think it creates a warm sense of community. The small nature of the campus also means that I am getting to know the professors, especially those within my major, really well which makes me feel more comfortable when I need to ask questions or ask for advice. As well as this, it really suits me to have my house, the library, the gym, and my classes in an easy walking distance. It’s great for the planet to not have to drive everywhere and it makes me more productive.

What are your goals for the semester? My main goal for this semester is to really work on being efficient in the readings I have for class. I have planned to set aside good amounts of time each day to read and make notes thoroughly to help me as essay deadlines and exams approach. My other goal, is to stop procrastinating my essays so I can have some more time to review and get help if I need. My last goal for this semester is to set more time aside to do the things I enjoy outside of studying like reading for pleasure, drawing, and exploring some of Illinois that I haven’t seen yet!

If there were a reality TV show of your life, what would it be called? Why? I think a reality TV show of my life would be called “Unexpected”. I’ve decided on this name because life, so far, has taken me on a journey I never expected or anticipated. I always knew I wanted to write but I never would have guessed I would be studying thousands of miles away from home. I like to think I’m pretty spontaneous and my show would reflect the random, weird, and exciting adventures I go on with my family and friends.

Are you involved in any clubs/activities/sports on campus? Or what are your hobbies? I try to get involved in the volunteering programs the campus offers whenever I’m available, because I enjoy going into the community to hep. As well as this, I want to get involved in some of the campus recreation hiking trips this semester to help me reach my goal of seeing more of Illinois. My main hobbies are drawing, reading, hiking and going to the gym.

What have you learned since working at the library? Since working at the library I have learnt how complex the workings of a library really are. I never knew how many different roles, jobs and functions were required to make a library successful and to make it an enjoyable place to work and study. I’ve also learnt the value of teamwork in a work setting (opposed to a sports team environment) and how all our roles are intertwined and what we do effects everyone else in the team. I’ve also learnt that the library has so many resources available for students, like research help and late opening times approaching finals week, which I encourage my friends to take advantage of, as well as using them myself.

What are your post-graduation plans? After I graduate I hope to continue my studies further by either going to graduate school or entering into a graduate program where I can start to get some work experience whilst earning my degree. There is a lot I want to study at a higher level as I’m interested in refining my knowledge of literature further, but I also want to progress my skills in writing, whether that be film script writing, writing for children’s books etc. I want to write a series of children’s books somewhere down the line and I’m excited to start that journey too.

What is your favorite item from the library collection? Definitely the DVD players we can rent. I am a huge film fan and sometimes the selection Netflix and other websites have to offer just isn’t enough and I personally enjoy having that tool so I can watch the DVDs I rent at the library or bring with me from home.

Meet the Team: Hasani

Student employee, Hasani

Name: Hasani

Hometown: Oak Park, Illinois

Major: Visual Arts

Status: Sophomore

What is your favorite thing about being a student at UIS? My favorite thing about being at UIS is the intimacy shared between students, professors, staff, etc. These bonds are integral to creating a unique university experience. I truly feel I couldn’t receive this type of personal care and acceptance at any other institution.

What are your goals for the semester? My goals for this semester are to focus on my academics, spend more time with my friends and family, and be more involved in my school. I did well last semester academically, but I can always improve. I’m naturally an introvert, but I don’t want to isolate myself from my friends and family. I wasn’t as involved last semester and this semester; I’m going to participate in more events from a multitude of organizations.

If there were a reality TV show of your life, what would it be called? Why? It would be called “Ordinary Struggle.” I choose this name because I do face struggle on a daily basis mentally, physically, and emotionally, but these struggles are similar, if not the same as anyone else. So the show would show how insignificant my struggles are to the world at large, but also show that I’m a part of a larger network and should appreciate that more.

Are you involved in any clubs/activities/sports on campus? Or what are your hobbies? I am a part of African Student Association, Necessary Steps, and Afro-Beat Dance Crew. My hobbies are dancing, listening and making music, and drawing. My passion is making art, especially with color pencil.

What have you learned since working at the library? I’ve learned that large institutions are composed of small parts. Though the tasks presented to me seem small and pointless, all of the tasks lean on each other to create the larger process. I feel almost like a part of a machine.

What are your post-graduation plans? Post-graduation, I plan on being an art teacher for high schoolers. Ideally, I want to be a full time fine artist, showing my work in museums. Regardless, I will always be an artist with the never ending need to create and bring others together.

What is your favorite item from the library collection? The camera provided by the Library of Things. I would like to check it out and take some photographic art.

Voter Registration at UIS

2020 is a major year in the United States since primary voting is happening as well as the general election. We’ll be deciding on who will represent us for the next 2 to 4 years starting in January of 2021.  If you want to vote in the primary election, you must be registered by March 1, 2020.  Primary elections for Illinois take place on March 17, 2020.  The voter registration deadline for Illinoisans is October 18, 2020 for the General Election.  And the General Election, which includes voting for federal and state elected officials, will take place on November 3, 2020.    

Find more information about voter registration for the 2020 elections here: http://libguides.uis.edu/uisvotes

Not sure if you’re eligible to vote? Check out this nifty chart, put together by the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center to find out:

Flowchart depicting how to register to vote

Most people can register online. However, if you need a Deputy Registrar to assist you, you can contact Connie Konmick in the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center at ckomn2@uis.edu. Brookens Library also has a Deputy Registrar who will be staffing the Brookens Library Research Help Desk on Wednesdays from 2-3pm and can assist you then. Or you can contact Pamela Salela directly at psale2@uis.edu.

Get informed and stay informed about the 2020 elections at UIS Votes: http://libguides.uis.edu/uisvotes

2020 is also a decennial Census year. Every ten years the U.S. takes a count of everyone in between our borders as well as Alaska and Hawaii in addition to our colonies (Puerto Rico , American Samoa, Guam, North Mariana Island and the U.S. Virgin Islands). Census Day is April 1 (no fooling!).  And if you’re looking for a well-paying, part-time temporary job, the Census has many positions open. You can get more information and find out how to apply here.

You can find out more about the U.S. Census at: https://libguides.uis.edu/Census2020