Odum Library Blog

Blog Image Alt Text

Learn, Study, Discover

Desert Storm 25th Anniversary

by Emily Rogers on January 28, 2016 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

This January and February mark the 25th anniversary of the United States’ participation in Operation Desert Storm, a military campaign designed to end Iraq’s occupation of Kuwait, which began in August 1990.  Consider official accounts of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm with this article from the U.S. Air Force Public Affairs Office and a fact sheet from the U.S. Air Force Historical Support Division. More information about the 25th anniversary of Desert Storm is available through a special commemorative Air Force web site that includes links to videos featuring Major General Paul T. Johnson, Colonel David Web, and Lt. General David “Orville” Wright. The U.S. Navy also presents an overview of the Navy’s role in Desert Storm.

View a collection of photographs of Desert Storm activity courtesy of the Defense Media Network.  The U.S. Army has prepared a timeline of Desert Storm, which includes comments by veterans who served in the operation. See what other veterans of the operation have to say in this recollection published by the Air Force’s 403rd Wing Public Affairs Office.   Those who returned from Gulf War service have often suffered major health consequences, as documented in this site from the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs.

Learn more about Operation Desert Shield and Storm and efforts to commemorate service in the Gulf region by visiting the government information exhibit on the 25th Anniversary of Desert Shield and Desert Storm on the second floor of Odum Library, near the Reference Desk.

 

 

MLK Day Opportunities and Library Hours

by Emily Rogers on January 5, 2016 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question,” asked Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “is what are you doing for others?” View Odum Library’s exhibit of government materials about Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, available in the Reference area on the library’s second floor.

The library will close at 12:00 midnight on Sunday, January 17, and will reopen at 8:00 am on Tuesday, January 19, in observation of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

In recent years, many people have used the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day holiday as a day of volunteer service to the community. This year’s MLK Day of Service is Monday, January 18. MLKDay.gov offers more information about available service opportunities.

The Department of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services offers educational materials about the life of Dr. King and history of the Day of Service along with information about becoming a United States citizen.

Read the “I have a dream” speech, available through the National Archives at archives.gov.

For those traveling away from Valdosta this holiday, MLK Day is a good time to visit the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial in Washington, DC, and the King Center in Atlanta.  Once you return from holiday activities, remember that Odum Library will be open again on January 19 at 8:00 am.

Wisdom returns to National Wildlife Refuge

by Emily Rogers on November 30, 2015 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

The oldest living banded wild bird, Wisdom, has returned to Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge in Hawaii. Wisdom, a 64-year-old Laysan albatross, spent a year at sea before returning to the refuge to reunite with her mate.  Sighted on November 19, 2015, Wisdom flew back to sea but should return soon to lay her egg.

The Laysan albatross lays just one egg per year and spends around 130 days incubating and raising her chick. Once done with this process, Wisdom should fly away again; refuge workers estimate that she has covered approximately six million ocean miles in her lifetime.

National wildlife refuges help protect and provide habitat for birds, amphibians, mammals, fish, and reptiles, many otherwise threatened. View the current list of threatened/endangered species, including those located in Lowndes County, Georgia:  the striped newt, the wood stork, the purple bankclimber mussel, the eastern indigo snake, and the gopher tortoise.

The National Wildlife Refuge system, run by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, covers more than 150 million acres of land and water, with at least one refuge located in each state. Nearby wildlife refuges include the Banks Lake NWF and the Okeefenokee NWF in south Georgia and the St. Marks NWF and the Lower Suwanee NWF in north Florida. Daily and annual passes are available–a small price to spend time with wildlife friends such as sandhill and whooping cranes, monarch butterflies, American alligators, and black bears.

Autumn Ways and Holidays

by Emily Rogers on November 18, 2015 in Government Documents, Hours, Odum Library, Reference

November has brought a few hints of cooler weather, Daylight Savings Time, Veterans Day, and Native American Heritage Month. As the days grow shorter, keep in mind upcoming schedule changes during the Thanksgiving break:

  • Odum Library will close at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, November 24, and reopen Saturday, November 28, at 9:00 a.m.

Other significant November events:

Once VSU students return to classes on November 30, the days of the semester grow shorter as well. Classes end on Monday, December 7, and final exams end Friday, December 11, with graduation on Saturday, December 12.  After that, it’ll be January 11, 2016, before students start classes again. Take care and enjoy your holidays!

 

Jane Smiley Talk and Exhibit

by Emily Rogers on November 6, 2015 in Neat Stuff, Odum Library, Reference

Jane SmileyOn November 12th at 7:30pm in the Student Union Theater, Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Jane Smiley will be holding a public reading from her newest work, the Last Hundred Years Trilogy. In order to celebrate Jane Smiley’s visit to Valdosta State University as 2015’s Writer-In-Residence, Odum Library has prepared an exhibit showcasing her works of fiction and non-fiction.

From a Pulitzer Prize-winning novel inspired by Shakespeare’s King Lear (A Thousand Acres) to a sweeping historical novel reminiscent of the sagas of Iceland (The Greenlanders), Jane Smiley has created works that span a variety of genres exploring different time periods, places, and interpersonal dynamics.

If you are interested in exploring the works of Jane Smiley for yourself, please visit the second floor Reserve Desk in Odum Library.

Whether you are a long-time Smiley fan or you have just discovered her novels, mark your calendars for November 12th at 7:30pm to see Jane Smiley at the Student Union Theater.

Veterans Day

by Emily Rogers on November 5, 2015 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

On Veterans Day we recognize veterans and all of those who have offered military service. While the post office and some businesses are closed for the day, Odum Library will observe its regular hours.

Find out more about Veterans Day through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, where you can read this History of Veterans Day, and the Veterans Day National  Committee. View the 2015 official Veterans Day poster along with posters from previous years.  Take a look at these FAQs about Veterans Day, including the correct spelling and punctuation for the holiday.

As a Federal Depository Library, Odum Library’s Government Documents collection includes many publications about veterans, including these hearings about issues affecting veterans:

Veterans’ history and needs to extend beyond Veterans Day, of course. The Library of Congress invites public participation in the Veterans History Project. Veteran Brian McGough describes ways to help veterans after Veterans Day.  Mark these and other ways to honor and thank the veterans who have served our country.

 

 

Resources on Breast Cancer Awareness

by Emily Rogers on October 5, 2015 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

Among the best sources for current information about breast cancer and other health issues are government web sites such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes for Health (NIH), and the National Cancer Institute (cancer.gov).

The CDC provides background on breast cancer and collects statistics about its occurrence.  Breast cancer is “the most common cancer in women, no matter your race or ethnicity;” in 2012 (the most recent year available) “224,147 women and 2,125 men in the United States were diagnosed with breast cancer,” according to the CDC. Young women as well as those above age 50 should be aware that approximately 11% of each year’s new cases of breast cancer affect women under age 45.

Fact sheets about breast cancer and an overview of risk factors and current research are available from the NIH, and more information, including sources on coping, are available through the National Cancer Institute. As you note breast cancer awareness month, be sure that the information you rely on is current and authoritative.

Georgia at a Glance

by Emily Rogers on September 23, 2015 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

From the Archives to the Reference Collection, Odum Library offers a wealth of information about the history, culture, and environment of Georgia. As an official depository of state of Georgia government publications, the library has much material about the state and its unique resources. To get started locating online information about Georgia, visit Georgia.gov, the official web site of the state of Georgia.

Some of the most popular topics about Georgia include how it was settled, who was born here, and what role it played in the Civil War; read answers to such frequently asked questions and more. The most thorough source of facts about Georgia is the New Georgia Encyclopedia, jointly produced in its digital edition by the Georgia Humanities Council, the University System of Georgia and GALILEO, the University of Georgia Press, and the Office of the Governor. There you can read about geography, history, arts, education, government, science and medicine, sports and recreation, and business, all with a Georgia flavor.

Your State Parks Day takes place Saturday, September 26th, 2015. Volunteer to help a Georgia state park in return for free entry to that park all day! For instance, Reed Bingham State Park, in Adel, Georgia, will use volunteers to help build a pollinator park to attract birds and butterflies in its “For the Birds” event. Once you’re done volunteering, you can find hiking, canoeing, camping, fishing, and more. Other upcoming events at Reed Bingham include Little River Paddle Tours on October 3rd and 17th and November 7th (parking on non-volunteer days costs $5/day).

Find ways to enjoy the beauty of Georgia this fall!

Home page photograph of canoe on Reed Bingham Lake courtesy of Julie Bowland. 

The Americans with Disabilities Act: 25 Years

by Emily Rogers on July 27, 2015 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference

July 26th marked the 25th anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against and requires equal access for persons with disabilities. View the current version of the ADA text, originally signed into law by President George H.W. Bush, and more about the law, regulations, standards, and assistance for the act at ADA.gov.  In fact, it’s also possible to view and read captions and description for a video of President Bush’s speech noting the ADA’s passage in 1990.

President Obama marked the historic occasion with a celebration at the White House, and Governor Nathan Deal of Georgia offered a 25th ADA anniversary proclamation. Find out more about the administration of the ADA in Georgia through the State of Georgia’s ADA Coordinator’s Office.

Here at VSU, the Access Office oversees access for all students to campus programs, activities, and services, including academic support. For more about the Americans with Disabilities Act, be sure to visit the government documents exhibit next to the Reference Desk in Odum Library.

 

 

Well, Hello, Pluto!

by Emily Rogers on July 16, 2015 in Government Documents, Odum Library, Reference, Uncategorized

This week the Earth is getting to know Pluto, the dwarf planet that the New Horizons mission has reached on its almost ten-year voyage throughout the solar system. We’re seeing close-ups of Pluto and learning more about the potential of our distant neighbor.

View videos about Pluto from NASA.gov’s feature “Pluto in a Minute.”  Learn interesting facts, such as why Pluto is now considered a “dwarf planet” rather than a full planetary member of our solar system, from the feature What Is Pluto?, part of the series NASA Knows.

You can congratulate NASA’s New Horizons team on the success of this mission by completing this form to relay your greetings, courtesy of the White House.

More photographs and data from New Horizon’s encounter with Pluto become available at a 1:00 pm EDT July 17th press briefing available on NASA TV.  See NASA TV’s schedules, streams, and more, and find out more during this historic week of frontier expansion. Throughout the year, you can keep in touch with what NASA is up to by viewing its Image of the Day series.  Onward, Horizon!