New CEO of Halifax Public Libraries

To: The Dalhousie University community

From: Carolyn Watters, Provost and Vice-President Academic

Date: September 23, 2014

Re: Åsa Kachan to become new CEO of Halifax Public Libraries

It is with great pride and a hint of sadness that I share the news that Åsa Kachan, Dalhousie’s Assistant Vice-President of Enrolment & Registrar, will be leaving the university to become the new Chief Executive Officer of Halifax Public Libraries.

It is wonderful to see one of our university’s most able and accomplished leaders taking the reins of such an important and vital public institution in our community. I have no doubt Åsa will bring the same vision and leadership she’s shown in her 10 years at Dalhousie to the Libraries at a key moment in their history, with the new Halifax Central Library set to open this fall. It is my hope this will present some exciting new opportunities for Dal to collaborate with Åsa, and the Libraries, in the future.

The work of Åsa’s team in the Registrar’s Office (over 120 staff in four service locations) spans the entire Dalhousie experience, from the first time students think about coming to Dal to their walk across the stage at Convocation to receive their degree. By listening to our students and being attuned to their needs, Åsa has led a number of critical transformations including revamping our entrance scholarship program to offer more renewable bursaries and consider broader criteria like leadership and community service, as well as improving front-end customer service in the Registrar’s Office. Chief among her accomplishments is the growth in the university’s student population: Dalhousie is more than 4,000 students stronger than when Åsa started, but also more national and international than ever before. It’s fair to say that without this expanding and broadening of our student enrolment, achieved through a reshaped recruitment operation, many of Dal’s achievements of the past decade would not have been possible.

Åsa would be the first to note her accomplishments were team efforts, enabled and supported not only by her own staff but by partners in Faculties, departments and service units all across campus. There is no doubt, though, that her inspired leadership and passion for our students’ success will be greatly missed. Thankfully, she leaves behind a very talented team, with Mairead Barry, Deputy Registrar & Executive Director of Enrolment Services, set to serve as Acting AVP Enrolment Management & Registrar effective November 1 until the search for Åsa’s successor has been concluded.

Please join me in congratulating Åsa on her exciting news and wishing her well at Halifax Public Libraries.

Carolyn Watters
Provost and Vice-President Academic

A National Digital Infrastructure: ideas wanted!

The Leadership Council for Digital Infrastructure has launched a crowdsourcing campaign to get fresh ideas for how to build a world-leading advanced digital infrastructure ecosystem for Canada.

Your input is important and will inform the development of a policy framework and roadmap for achieving an advanced DI.  Visit the Council’s new website at and participate early in the campaign.

Broad participation from the entire DI (digital infrastructure) community will help ensure a more integrated, inclusive, comprehensive, accessible and sustainable advanced DI ecosystem that will accelerate research, education and innovation in all sectors, and at all levels.

The campaign is open to all researchers, academic administrators, project managers in government and academe, students, policy makers and anyone else who stands to use and benefit from an advanced DI ecosystem in Canada.

Please share this notice widely through your networks.

SIM and other Dalhousie students collaborate to create an open access 3D-model archive

The website recently posted an article on the 3D Model Archive project currently being taken on by me and a number of other Dalhousie students.

As part of this project, SIM student Riel Gallant is now working on the 3D digitization of a number of objects from the Dalhousie Libraries’ Archives, while SIM student Amy Lorencz will soon be developing a method for cataloguing the 3D models created through this project and adding them to the Dalhousie Libraries’ 3D Model Repository.

Outside of SIM, Masters of Engineering student Gautam Chawla has also joined our team as a 3D Digitizer, while International Masters of Business Administration student Hugo Be Touze has come on board as a Researcher, bringing with him his extensive marketing experience.


3D Scanning at the Thomas McCulloch Museum. Photo Credit: Chris Putnam


Right now we are digitizing and cataloguing a large selection of marine biology related items from the Thomas McCulloch Museum, in addition to the Dalhousie Archives’ objects Riel is focusing on. Next we plan to proceed to the 3D digitization of on-campus artwork and human-anatomy related models and specimens.

Thanks to a grant from the Canadian Association of Research Libraries and the continued, generous support of CBCL Ltd., everyone involved in this project is receiving a wage for their work, which allows us to devote our full attention to ensuring that the objects we are working with are preserved and catalogued as accurately as possible.

Also, thanks to the Dalhousie Libraries and Donna Bourne-Tyson, we have access to a NextEngine laser scanner that allows us to digitize these objects.

If you see any objects on the 3D Model Repository that you really like, you should consider printing them off on the Killam Library’s 3D Printer and taking them home with you.


Mike Groenendyk

First Brown Bag Lunch of 2013

SIM students,

Join three librarians from the Dalhousie Libraries this Friday, January 25 for the first Brown Bag Lunch of 2013! January’s Brown Bag Lunch theme is HIRING and the lineup of speakers includes:

Geoff Brown (Technical Services Librarian)

Sarah Jane Dooley (Head of Reference and Research Services, Promotions & Liasons Librarian – Sexton Library)

Sarah Stevenson (Physical Sciences Librarian – Killam Library, Libraries Web Publisher)

Each speaker has served on search committees for both internship and professional hiring committees, as well as Appointments/Promotions/Tenures committees within the Dalhousie Libraries system.  Learn about getting the interview with tips for the application process (what hiring committees are looking for from application documents), and preparing for the interview with tips for background research and interview style.  First year students will get some valuable guidance for applying for summer internships! Second year students can learn what to include when applying for professional employment!

Brown Bag Lunch will take place in the SIM Common Room (4th floor Rowe) this Friday, January 25th from noon to 1pm.  Bring yourself and your questions!  As always, snacks and beverages will be provided.

If you have any questions, contact Tara at

Video of our 3D printing and libraries talk at Access 2012 in Montreal

The CLA Access 2012 Conference committee has begun posting all their talks on their Youtube channel. Here’s a link for those of you interested in watching our presentation on 3D printing at Dalhousie University Libraries:

Discovering New Dimension – Marc Comeau, Riel Gallant, and Michael Groenendyk at Access 2012 in Montreal

SIM Student Awarded CARL Research in Librarianship Grant

I would like to thank the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) for providing me with this opportunity to further develop my research into 3D printing and scanning technologies at the Dalhousie Libraries, and to complete the groundwork on the 3D model repository created this summer on DalSpace. This additional funding will be very helpful in moving this project forward and, as such, is much appreciated.


CARL’s full press release for the announcement of the Research in Librarianship grant can be found here.

Notable speakers at the CLA Access Conference in Montreal

On October 20th fellow SIM student Michael Groenendyk and I went to Access 2012 and presented our Killam Library 3D printing and scanning pilot project to a room of over a hundred tech-focused Information Professionals.  We’ll have a detailed report on the conference and our presentation in SIM’s upcoming issue of Inform.

You may want to check out some of these notable speakers we got the opportunity to hear:

The first talk on Friday was by Aaron Straup Cope, formerly of Flickr, now working with the Smithsonian National Design Museum. Here’s a video of another great talk he gave in New York:  Stories from the New Aesthetic

Art Rhyno was a favourite at the conference—he spoke Saturday morning on his OCR newspaper digitization project at the University of Windsor. He doesn’t often come to Access and many people were eager to meet him.

watching Art Rhyno talking about newspapers, ocr, tesseract, backblaze #AccessYUL

— Ed Summers (@edsu) October 20, 2012

Alistair Croll presented Friday and held a very memorable talk on Big Data—a great speaker worth hearing and a topic worth looking into.

We’d like to thank the Dalhousie University Libraries and SIM for this great opportunity.

President of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries to visit SIM

The current President of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries, Cyndi Murphy, will be at Dalhousie on October 5th at 12pm to give a free information session on careers in legal information management as well as answering any questions regarding CALL such as membership, benefits, and the upcoming conference.

Ms. Murphy is presently the Director of Research & Library Services and a Knowledge Manager at Stewart McKelvey law firm in downtown Halifax and is a Dalhousie School of  Library Services Alumni. She was elected as President of CALL in May 2011.

Another speaker for the session will be Mark Lewis, the Information Technology and Reference Librarian at the Schulich Law School Library. Mr. Lewis will be speaking about his experience with academic librarianship from a legal information specialist perspective as well as what he believes to be the benefits of joining the Canadian Association of Law Libraries.

This session is open to all MLIS students and faculty. We encourage all to attend even if you don’t think being a law librarian is your main goal. Additional speakers may be added to the program, keep checking the CALL Dalhousie Student Interest Group Blog for updates

Event Details: 

  • When: Friday October 5th, 12pm – 1pm
  • Where: 3087/89 Conference room, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building
  • Who: Open to all MLIS students and faculty
  • RSVP for this event to