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Continuum: Enhance What You Get Out of College and What You Do When You Get Out of College


Darren Poley, Interim Library Director

The Library is a natural place to conduct intellectual exploration. It has a labyrinth of book stacks; computer enabled areas and hotspots; audio, video, and even microform materials. It has noisy gathering spaces: some organized for co-curricular activity, such as ACS approved event programming, and others where students collaborate and discuss in an anarchic way. Falvey is not a shushing library, but it does offer spaces for quiet study. Falvey has places to nourish the mind, the body and, it is hoped, even the spirit.

Lent is a time for renewal and Easter a time for regeneration. And when the University community returns from the holiday weekend—which I hope is filled with both times for reflection as well as times for fellowship and fun—I hope folks know they are welcome to come to the Library to prepare for the end of the academic year.

Photo by Frank Klassner

Photo by Frank Klassner

For some it will be a time to prepare for being graduated and going into the world as alums holistically prepared by the Villanova educational experience. It has been said in various ways, and I think it holds true: Education is about more than learning to make a living. Rather, education should be about learning to make a life worth living. It is hoped that Falvey and library explorations have enriched the Villanova experience for students and the campus community by its support of the enterprise of a liberal education. That is, one distinguished by the freedom to be imaginative and curious as much as analytical and fact-driven. Such an education produces, in addition to a fulfilling vocation and career, great thinkers and presenters of ideas who pursue truth, goodness, and beauty.

For those returning after the long Easter weekend—whether you are graduating or will have yet more exploring to do next year—please keep in mind Falvey extends both electronic and human guides that are here to help you along your educational journey. Online, we have subject guides and more. These virtual guides enable you to more easily navigate databases and full-text collections. You may also want a human guide, either to help you use our online tools or to orient you to Falvey’s physical collections. For support, contact a librarian. If you need a specialist for subject-specific library research, make an appointment with a liaison librarian by reaching out to the subject-specific liaison team that matches your research needs.

Everyone at Falvey is dedicated to aiding our students’ intellectual explorations, and I hope you find the Library complements your Villanova educational experience.



How Suite it is! You and your ‘peeps’ can win private meeting-room usage during Finals Week!


Finding a quiet place to study on campus during Finals Week can be a challenge and the difference between an A and a, well, you know, blech. With our traditional Open Until 3am extended hours beginning, Monday, April 28, the Library is sensitive to students’ needs. But this year we are planning something extra special for one lucky group: a week’s use of an exclusive meeting room in our new Learning Commons – a venue usually reserved only for library events and meetings!

How to enter? Simply take a photograph of you and your ‘peeps’ and upload it to one of the library’s social media accounts: Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #falveypeeps. One lucky group will be selected randomly from all photographs submitted! That group (up to ten students) will be allowed access to Room 206 in the Learning Commons from 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. each night from Sunday, May 4, through Thursday, May 8.  Peace, quiet, whiteboards and some sweet deliveries while you’re there (wink, wink!) – it doesn’t get any better than that!

Rules? Not a lot – just have fun! Creativity doesn’t count with this one – we know you’re super busy these days!! And who qualifies as your peeps? That’s totally up to you – but it is Easter time, and we do have a sweet tooth. Just sayin’.



Submit your photos, either in-person or at Falvey’s main service counter or electronically, by noon on Wednesday, April 30. Winners will be notified on Thursday, May 1 by email and will have their winning photo published on our blog! Submission of a photo grants use of the photo on library social media accounts and promotional displays and materials.


DA FINE PRINT: Contest is open to full- or part-time students enrolled in the spring 2014 semester at Villanova University. Limit of five entries per student. Photos submitted must be original to the entrant and have been legally created; must not not infringe the intellectual property, privacy, or publicity rights or any other legal or moral rights of any third party; and must be suitable for public viewing, i.e., not indecent or obscene. By submitting an entry, an entrant represents that he/she owns all rights to the photo. And other things, too, that we might not have thought of yet! :-)

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Foto Friday: And the award goes to …


Visit our DVD collection housed right inside the door to Falvey West Stacks. Check one out over the break!

Here is a list of this year’s Oscar nominees. What are your picks?

Laura Hutelmyer is the photography coordinator for the Communication and Service Promotion team and special acquisitions coordinator in Resource Management


Continuum: Welcome 2014


As classes get back into full swing for the spring semester, I hope students continue to see their Library as a welcoming and inviting place to interact and explore intellectually. My concern is that, because they grew up in a digital world, students may not recognize that the Library is significant and also relevant to current learning and study needs.

A good contemporary academic library, such as Falvey, functions as a setting for group study, a collaborative environment for interacting around computers, a place to connect with complex digital resources while receiving instructional assistance from a librarian, and a venue for a broad mix of cultural and intellectual events, in addition to providing access to learning resources in print and digital forms. Falvey strives to provide students with a lively and diverse learning environment.

We know students come to study in Falvey and Falvey Hall, both individually and in groups, often using the group-study rooms, Reading Room and similar study spaces we have available. They come for quick access to email; if they don’t have their laptop with them, they borrow one of our laptops; and they use the wireless network to sit comfortably and read, write, browse the Web, or perform similar tasks. They come to Falvey to print documents (we have the busiest printers on campus!) and for assistance with class assignments. They come to access services on the second-floor Learning Commons: the Writing Center, the Math Learning Resource Center, Learning Support Services, Library Research Support.

Our mission is to provide a positive supportive experience from the start, so our users will see the Library as a place to come when they need assistance and support with academic and co-curricular pursuits. We very much see Falvey Memorial Library as essential to the Villanova experience.



Foto Friday: Nothing but the squirrels going on…

One of the best views from a library window, Corr Hall was built between 1912 and 1914,  and designed in the Gothic Revival style, complete with medieval chapel and castellated towers.

One of the best views from a library window, Corr Hall was built between 1912 and 1914, and designed in the Gothic Revival style, complete with medieval chapel and castellated towers.


Continuum: Building on Our Success

Darren2014 will be a year for Falvey to build on its successes. We are a Library recognized nationally for excellence in many different areas, and internationally for innovative thinking and action.

When I look around our Library, I see champions. When I look at the teams and groups around the Library, both formal and informal, I see collaborative efforts for the common good which are willing to experiment and nurture new ideas. When I think about Falvey, I see a Library that has already achieved greatness by balancing risk with return on investment. When I talk to folks outside the Library, I hear amazement. They desire to emulate the things we have done if they are at other academic libraries, and they desire to work with us on big ideas in support of the University’s strategic goals if they are members of Villanova’s community. It is a proven fact: we are a great Library when we work together.FOIGHTACRL In 2013, for example, the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) presented the Excellence in Academic Libraries Award in the university category to Falvey Memorial Library (See more about the award here.)

I want Falvey to build on its successes, and there are many. I will measure my own success as interim director based on the success of everyone at Falvey, individually and collectively. I cannot control or invent our success. It is something we will achieve by continuing to do the things we already do well, and by building on our many accomplishments. Together we will accomplish the greatness we have only just begun to realize.



Behold, I Am the Handmaid of the Lord: Feast of the Immaculate Conception


The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is celebrated each December eighth, which this year is also the second Sunday of Advent. Pope Pius IX (his pontificate was 1846-1878), who had a life-long devotion to the Virgin Mary, issued “the divine dogma of Our Lady’s Immaculate Conception” in the Basilica of St. Peter, Rome, on December eighth, 1854.

“We declare, pronounce and define that the doctrine which holds that the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the first instant of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace of the Omnipotent God, in virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of mankind, was preserved immaculate from all stain of original sin, has been revealed by God, and therefore should firmly and constantly be believed by all the faithful …”

The firing of a cannon at the Castel Sant’Angelo and the ringing of the bells of the churches and basilicas in Rome followed Pius’ proclamation, which he issued before 170 bishops and numerous pilgrims.

Villanova’s Grotto is a Shrine to Our Mother of Good Counsel. The Virgin Mary as Our Mother of Good Counsel is the protectress of the Augustinian Order, and they have always promoted devotion to her.


Photograph and article by Alice Bampton


Remembering JFK: 50th Anniversary of the President’s Assassination


November 22 marks the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s (JFK’s) assassination in Dallas, Texas in 1963. Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States, was travelling by motorcade with First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy that fateful day, campaigning for the next presidential election, when he was shot and killed. Many Americans believe this tragic event changed America forever.

During his brief time in office, JFK was a monumental force in promoting the change of the social and political landscape of America. He helped to raise minimum wage, create the Peace Corps, aid the Civil Rights Movement, improve Social Security benefits and even build support for the space program’s mission of landing on the moon—a dream that would eventually come to fruition in 1969. Most notably, perhaps, JFK played a vital role in peacefully ending the Cuban Missile Crisis, avoiding what could have been a devastating nuclear war with the Soviet Union. His famous call to all Americans during his inaugural address, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country,” was the main motivating force of his presidency. He lived for public service and encouraged all Americans to do the same in order to contribute to the greater good. He gave us hope that things could change for the better.

Millions of Americans and people from all over the world mourned the loss of JFK in 1963, and many are still fascinated with him to this day. Why are we still captivated by a man who has long since gone? Kennedy served as president for just under three years, but in that short amount of time he made quite an impact. In addition to his political work, JFK was also greatly admired for his roles as husband and father to his two small children, Caroline and John Jr. The First Family was often in the public eye, especially as televised news increased in popularity, which helped many connect with JFK on a deeper level. The American public found him easy to relate to when they saw him playing these common, everyday roles. Images of his children playing in the White House Oval Office and similar warm family moments have become icons and an illuminative window into a simpler time in America. Through his youth and charisma, it seems as though JFK was able to give the White House a newfound warmth and vibrancy that it had never quite had before. Perhaps that is part of what keeps us interested in him—his death represents a loss of innocence during what was thought to be a time of hope and transformation.

Although JFK’s popularity has endured throughout the years, current college students may be curious about what he truly symbolized to American public at the time and why he is sometimes still analyzed in the media to this day. Not to fear! Falvey Memorial Library’s political science research expert, Merrill Stein, has assembled library resources to satisfy your curiosity and help you to Dig Deeper.


Dig Deeper

Resources available at Falvey Memorial Library (suggested by our very own Political Science research expert, Merrill Stein):


This Close to a Killer

 The Truth About JFK and Vietnam: Why the Speculation is Wrong-Headed


Blind Over Cuba

Passion for Truth : From Finding JFK’s Single Bullet to Questioning Anita Hill to Impeaching Clinton

The CIA & Congress : The Untold Story from Truman to Kennedy

The Other Missiles of October : Eisenhower, Kennedy, and the Jupiters

The Missile Crisis of October 1962 : A Review of Issues and References

The Road to Dallas: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy

Report of the Warren Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy



Jacqueline Kennedy : Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy, Interviews with Arthur M. Schlesinger.


The Missiles of October


American National Biography Online (Oxford)

Congress and the Nation

CQ Almanac

CQ Electronic Library (SAGE)

CQ Press Voting and Elections Collection


National Journal

Washington Post Historical

Worldwide Political Science Abstracts

External Websites:

JFK Facts

JFK Library

JFK 50 Year Anniversary Website

The  American Presidency Project

Today in 1963 Twitter Feed

Wilson Center-Cold War International History Project

U.S. Government Bookstore (collection of the official Federal publications by and about President John F. Kennedy) 

Local Exhibit:

Philadelphia University’s Paul J. Gutman Library:

“Single Bullet: Arlen Specter & the Warren Commission Investigation of the JFK Assassination.”

Information on of some of the many TV specials, movies and books that will be available around the anniversary of JFK’s death this month:

Daily Bulletin

San Jose Mercury News

TV Guide

USA Today

Article by Regina Duffy, writer for the Communication & Service Promotion team and Library Events and Program coordinator.

SteinResearch links provided by Merrill Stein, team leader of the Assessment team and liaison to the Department of Political Science.

Our new Dig Deeper series features links to Falvey Memorial Library resources curated and provided by a librarian specializing in the subject, to allow you to enhance your knowledge and enjoyment of seasonal occasions and events held here at the Library. Don’t hesitate to ‘ask us!’ if you’d like to take the excavation even further. And visit our Events listings for more exciting upcoming speakers, lectures and workshops! 


Dig Deeper: Death and “Everyman” pay a visit to Vasey Theatre


Villanova Theatre’s production of the medieval drama Everyman opens Nov. 12, and offers a contemporary re-imagining of the classic allegorical tale. The production, directed by the Rev. David Cregan, OSA, PhD, features a female actor portraying the lead role of Everyman, and a script translated from Middle English into the current vernacular by Mark J. Costello, an alumnus of the University’s Master of Arts in Theatre program.

Given that several ACS courses have integrated the text of Everyman into their syllabus, Villanova Theatre’s production proves timely as the semester draws to a close and students begin crafting their final papers.

Everyman runs from Nov. 12 to Nov. 24 in Vasey Theatre on Villanova’s main campus.

Research librarian Sarah Wingo compiled this week’s Dig Deeper links. A theatre buff, she looks forward to the modern twist the Villanova production will add to the morality play. Those links can be found below:



Dig Deeper: Everyman

Link to Project Gutenberg text of Everyman. Available in multiple formats including PDF and Kindle versions: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/19481

One of the earliest surviving printed versions of Everyman from 1515, Held at the Bodleian Library and viewable online through EEBO: https://library.villanova.edu/Find/Record/1119972

Later 1528 version with woodcut images: https://library.villanova.edu/Find/Record/1111710#sthash.Pbu4iRR4.dpuf

Everyman a comparative study of texts and sources (BOOK, available in Falvey): https://library.villanova.edu/Find/Record/396360#sthash.pmTeRdNL.dpuf

Article by Corey Waite Arnold, writer and intern on the Communication and Publications team. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

Sarah WingoLinks prepared by Sarah Wingo, team leader- Humanities II, subject librarian for English, literature and theatre.

Our new Dig Deeper series features links to Falvey Memorial Library resources curated and provided by a librarian specializing in the subject, to allow you to enhance your knowledge and enjoyment of seasonal occasions and events held here at the Library. Don’t hesitate to ‘ask us!’ if you’d like to take the excavation even further. And visit our Events listings for more exciting upcoming speakers, lectures and workshops! 




Continuum: Your Academic Library, both Active and Passive

DarrenThe answer to what an academic library is varies based on one’s need. I suggest, however, it must be both active and passive in providing services if it is to be relevant to its community. The needs of our university-community members constantly change: sometimes daily, even hourly. To be ready to meet the challenges this situation presents, the academic library should be a nimble yet stable institution. Active and nimble while remaining passive and stable is a pretty tough role. So what allows us to fulfill this role, and how is Falvey accomplishing this “all things to all people” model when it comes to providing services?

Falvey Library Mobile Website

What keeps an academic library active and nimble is looking to the immediate needs for which students and faculty turn to the library: access to data and assistance transforming data into information in the pursuit of knowledge. Current sources, many of them instantaneous, can give anyone access to data by means of devices that can fit in your backpack or even your pocket. Knowing how to locate relevant data, sift through results, and evaluate the academic appropriateness of what is discovered is the true hurdle. While technological facility and some degree of discovery sophistication are almost innate among today’s students, real information literacy is the key for unlocking data in an effort to turn it into knowledge.

An essential element of this process is the librarian, who actively reaches out to scholars in an effort to guide and instruct, helping them successfully migrate from data seeker to knowledge worker. The pedagogy for information literacy, therefore, needs to be seamlessly combined with many different efforts at customer service. To achieve this end, the reference-books area on Falvey’s second floor is being reconfigured into a research service center to strengthen the library’s customer-service presence on the Learning Commons street. This improvement is precisely the kind of service provision outreach that helps students find their way to advanced library research assistance and the librarians with subject expertise.

This change is active, too, in that it results from a data driven decision to offer a concierge-like service. It is nimble in that Falvey as a facility is not so fixed that it is unable to adapt. In fact, the space which we are identifying as the research service center will convert to an area of mixed furniture for studying when it is not staffed. This capability results directly from a survey of library users, primarily undergraduate students. So the space passively waits to be made active by librarians reaching out to assist students, and students can inhabit the space for studying when it’s not active as a service center.

READING2 ROOM SUNNYAnother example of a passive space that becomes animated with activity is the Falvey Hall lobby and reading room. Recently, areas of Falvey Hall (aka “Old Falvey”) that for years had been unavailable to students have been re-opened for quiet study 24/7. The spaces now passively wait for university community members to use them for their intended purposes. The newly opened study lounge and reading room greatly increase the capacity for the Library to be the place on campus to study, anytime, day or night. Yet these stable venues are activated in that students use white boards in the Falvey Hall lobby to diagram and articulate, and in the reading room, long the hallmark of an academic library, they can participate as a spectator in the ongoing Baroque painting conservation campaign. Mere passive spaces again become lively and furtive for the transformation of data to information, and on into knowledge.

Falvey is poised to provide active library research assistance, and is active in providing passive yet engaging spaces around the clock. It is a blend of active and passive. This function is important for an academic library: to be active and responsive when it needs to be but also there when you need it, as it should be.





Darren Poley is the interim library director and can be reached by email or by phone at 610-519-4290.


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Last Modified: November 6, 2013