2022 Library Undergraduate Research Award Winners

Brookens Library and the Friends of Brookens Library are excited to announce the winners of our Eigth 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. The Friends of Brookens Library funds the $1500 in awards received by students.

The excellent projects submitted this year made the judging a challenge, but the selection committee of Holly Kent, Diana Zaleski, and John Laubersheimer were able to decide upon the winners.

This year we are honored to recognize the following students for their exceptional research:

1st Place: Taryn Christy – “Our Building is Run by Women”: Women’s Success in the Illinois Public Sector

2nd Place: Abigail High – The Decision to Drop the Atomic Bombs

3rd Place: Briana Rodriquez – Forced Labor in U.S Detention Centers: The Exploitation of Detained Immigrants Under the Guise of Voluntary Work Programs

4th Place: Blake Bergner – The Significance and Racism of the Lincoln-Douglas Debates

5th Place: Diana Ibarra – The Augmentation of Feminicides in Latin America Through Machismo

The competition was tough this year and all of our submissions were top quality research. A big congratulations for all our winners and all of our entrants!

Are You Taking Care of Your Mental Health?

Ask yourself.

Are you taking yourself?

You might say, “Yes I am!” or “kind of”.

You may be taking yourself PHYSICALLY, but are you taking care of yourself MENTALLY?

It’s okay if you haven’t because things happen and life can become really hectic. No matter who you are or what your roles are in life. You could be a teacher, student, parent, etc. Your mental health matters! When you take care of your mental health you feel more relaxed, energized, focused and so much more! Take the time out of your busy schedule to give your mind a break! Some tips to take care of your mental health are: 

  • Spend time with your family and friends. 
  • Exercise.
  • Go to sleep at a good time.
  • Utilize mental health services.

Mental Health Awareness Month is an annual month celebration that is celebrated in May to celebrate the awareness of mental health. Mental Health Awareness Month was created in the 1940s to increase the awareness of mental health. Need a way to take care of your mental health? Down below are some recommendations from our cloudLibrary shelves to help you destress and focus on your mental health!

cloudLibrary Recommendations:

We hope you enjoy our Mental Health Awareness Month recommendations! To find more eBooks and eAudiobooks for Mental Health Awareness Month, visit cloudLibrary

How to Book a Research Consultation

You may be asking yourself, “What is a Research Consultation?”

A research consultation is a self-made appointment with a librarian of your choice. Booking a research consultation is very beneficial, especially if you need assistance with a paper or an assignment that involves research. Don’t worry, our librarians are here to help!

Librarians are research experts who can help with all stages of the research process. We can help you with picking a topic, identifying search terms, navigating databases, evaluating sources and more!

Book a research consultation with one of our librarians to get one-on-one research help in person or on Zoom.

How To Book an Online Research Consultation with a Librarian:

  1. Go to the Brookens Library website. From there, click on the pink icon titled “Research Guides.”
  1. You will now be on a web page that lists different subjects that are taught at UIS. Select the one that is most related to your research topic or course.
  1. When you choose your subject, you will be taken to a page that gives you the most recommended librarian that will be able to assist you. At the top left, there are 5 categories: Welcome (current page), Develop a Topic, Build a Search Plan, Find Sources and Get Help. It also has a video on the “Introduction of the Research Process” that explains the research process more in depth. To the left below the librarian’s picture you will see a gray button that says “Schedule an Appointment”. Click on it.
  1. The page should change and allow you to schedule your appointment with a librarian. Follow the instructions on the page and you’re done! You will automatically be booked on the librarian’s calendar.

If you need immediate research assistance, you can also chat with us via the chat box on the library website.

Navigating Research Guides

Are you struggling with your research? If so, Brookens offers quite a few resources that you can use to improve your research experience! One of these amazing resources is our Research Guides.

Research Guides can be accessed from the library homepage by clicking on the pink book icon. Once you open the Research Guides, you’ll see that they’re organized by subject, which makes it easy to find exactly what you need.

What is a Research Guide?

After you select a subject, you’ll see a menu on the left side of the screen that has everything you need to know. These tabs will walk you through the research process. Each tab includes information that will help you with specific elements of your research. The “Find Sources” tab will guide you to specific resources for your subject. This includes databases, news sources, and books. If you need more assistance, the “Get Help” tab will provide you with some additional resources and places you can go for extra information. To contact the librarian who specializes in your subject, just head back to the “Welcome” tab and either email them or schedule an appointment.

Next time you find yourself stuck in the research process, just check out the Brookens Research Guides. With plenty of information to walk you through your research, you’ll be succeeding in no time!

Celebrating National Library Week

Happy National Library Week! This year, the annual celebration is taking place from April 3rd-9th, and the theme is “Connect With Your Library.” With the first National Library Week taking place in 1958, the yearly event has been celebrated in libraries across the country for decades. At Brookens this week, we’re going to be celebrating in a few different ways, so feel free to get involved!

Connect With Your Library

A theme involving connection can be interpreted in so many ways, and, in our opinion, it’s definitely important to focus on all of the possible aspects of connection! There’s definitely an element of Brookens that applies to however you interpret connection. We have technology, amazing employees and events, and various other resources and services available to students, faculty, community members, and alumni.

Celebrating at Brookens

This year, we’ll be doing quite a bit to celebrate National Library Week! Tuesday (April 5th) is National Library Workers Day, so be sure to express your gratitude to any library employees you may see then (and any other day as well!). Wednesday (April 6th) is National Library Outreach Day and you’ll definitely want to check out our Instagram for something special! We’ll also have some other special posts on our social media throughout the week and a few interactive things at the library, so keep an eye out for those as well!

Be sure to keep your favorite library in mind as you celebrate National Library Week! If you’re looking for more information on the yearly celebration, you can check out this American Library Association page!

We’re Hiring for Summer!

Are you looking for an on-campus job? The library is hiring and you can join our team starting this summer! Brookens is looking for student assistants who will provide customer service at the library’s main desk and assist in processing books and other library materials.

Necessary Qualifications to be Considered for Summer Employment

  • Registered for at least 6 credit hours in either the Spring 2022 or Fall 2022 semester
  • Able to work during the Fall 2022 semester
  • More information regarding employment eligibility is available on the Student Employment Procedures website

Application Process

  • Apply to the job in Career Connect by April 12th (you must have an approved resume to apply)
  • Complete this questionnaire
  • Applicants will be notified via email by April 19th

Undergraduate Research Award

Research award graphic saying Let the Library Make You a Winner.

Brookens Library and the Friends of Brookens Library are excited to announce our eighth 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, $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

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 on the Undergraduate Research Award website.

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.

The deadline to apply is April 29, 2022.

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

Peer Research Drop-In Hours

Brookens Library is now offering in-person peer research help on Sundays from 2-8pm and Tuesdays-Thursdays from 6-9pm! This drop-in help is the perfect opportunity to get immediate assistance with your research.

Some perks of the drop-in hours include:

  • Research help outside the librarians’ typical hours
  • Instant support without making an appointment
  • Opportunity to get assistance from peers who have a broad research-knowledge base
  • Easy access at the library’s main desk

Some examples of help offered at the drop in hours include:

  • Selecting and navigating databases and research guides
  • Selecting and improving search terms
  • Finding both online and in-person resources
  • Referrals to a librarian/walking you through making an appointment with a librarian
  • And much more!

Next time you’re needing some extra support with your research, stop by the main desk at Brookens on Sundays from 2-8pm and Tuesdays-Thursdays from 6-9pm to get help from your peers!

For help with more complex research questions, schedule a research appointment with a librarian.

Celebrating Women’s Month

Women’s Month, also known as Women’s History Month is an annual month that highlights special moments in history that women have contributed. Women are a very important asset to our society because without women there wouldn’t be mankind. The celebration of Women’s History month didn’t start until the late 1900s. It originally started off as a week-long celebration but as the years went on, it became a full month celebration.

One way to celebrate this month is to make a beautiful art piece. Another way to celebrate is to watch popular women empowerment movies and read women literature. Down below are some book recommendations from our cloudLibrary shelves and some movie recommendations you can check out from the library.

cloudLibrary Recommendations:

Movie Recommendations:

We hope you enjoy our Women’s History Month recommendations! To find more eBooks and eAudiobooks for Women’s History Month, visit cloudLibrary. Wonder if the library has your choice of movie? Look it up on the library catalog.

Prep for Spring Break with Library Resources

With spring break approaching, students are finally guaranteed some free time after a busy few months. If you don’t have plans next week and are wondering what you can do to stay busy – look no further than the library!

eBooks and Audiobooks

Brookens Library has an eBook service that all UIS students can easily use! Either download the cloudLibrary app or check out the cloudLibrary website. All you need to log in is the library card number on your iCard! eBooks and eAudiobooks are perfect if you’re traveling and want a book you can easily open on your phone. There are multiple featured lists with some great recommendations if you can’t decide what to read!

Book Recommendations

For readers who are more interested in physical copies instead of eBooks, there are plenty of places to get book recommendations! When you walk into the library on the main floor, our featured book displays are across from the main desk. With several great books to choose from, the book displays are a great place to go if you don’t know what to read next. We also have a few past blog posts with some recommendations including books for people who aren’t readers, books from impactful authors, books from LGBTQ+ authors, books from Native American authors, and more!

Binge Kits

If you’re a fan of movies rather than books, don’t worry! The library’s offerings aren’t limited solely to books – we also have a substantial DVD collection along with DVD players that are available to check out. Our DVD binge kits each include three movies that have a common theme. Some popular choices that are featured this month include Romantic Academia and Recent Pixar Favorites, among several others. When you check out a binge kit (located next to the book displays, across from the main desk), you also have the opportunity to get candy and popcorn to complete your perfect movie night!

Library of Things

The library also has a Library of Things collection with some unique items for students to borrow! One of the largest components of the Library of Things is the selection of board games. With a huge range of games that can be played with as few as 2 players and as many as 10, there’s something for everyone. Some other fun Library of Things items that are available to check out for use during spring break include a sewing machine, different kitchen supplies (ranging from baking supplies to an ice cream maker), cameras, and a Sega Genesis console.

Whether you’re planning on staying in with a good book or getting together with friends to watch a movie, you can count on Brookens to have everything you need for a great spring break! Enjoy your break next week!