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Photo Essay: James and Kathryn Murphy Reception on Nov. 12

On Thursday, November 12, Villanova University Community members and friends gathered to honor James Murphy, PhD, founder and former director of Villanova’s Irish Studies program and his wife, Kathryn Murphy.

James and Kathryn Murphy Reception Poster1

A reception and poetry reading event was held in order to highlight the couple’s recent donation of 300 signed, first-edition Irish poetry books to Villanova University’s Falvey Memorial Library.

Craig Bailey, PhD, associate professor of history and interim director of the Irish Studies program, planned the reception along with the help of Joyce Harden, administrative/events assistant for interdisciplinary and area studies programs, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

(From left to right) Craig Bailey, James Murphy and Kathryn Murphy are all smiles at the event.

(From left to right) Dr. Craig Bailey, Dr. James Murphy and Kathryn Murphy were all smiles at the event.


The reception opened with a festive set of live tunes from musicians (from left to right) Darin Kelly, Siobhan Murray, and Tomás O Cathail.

The reception opened with a festive set of live tunes from musicians (from left to right) Darin Kelly, Siobhan Murray, and Tomás O Cathail.


Award-winning poet and former 2011 Heimbold Chair, Moya Cannon, reads selections of poetry.


The crowd listens attentively as Moya reads. It was a packed house!

The crowd listens attentively as Moya Cannon reads poetry selections. It was a packed house!


At the event’s close, Dr. Murphy acknowledged the crowd and thanked his wife Kathy for her support.

In addition to the generous donation of books, the Murphy’s have contributed greatly to the Irish Studies program since its inception in 1979. See here for a timeline of noteworthy dates for the Irish Studies Program.


‘Caturday: Thankful ‘Cats

The ‘Cats who worked on The Villanovan newspaper filled the November 1916 issue primarily with their Thanksgiving-themed original stories and poetry, including the hymn below by Gerard F. Hart, class of 1919. Their works were especially poignant as one of the worst moments of World War I, the Battle of the Somme, took place that year.

May all Villanovans enjoy Thanksgiving with their family and friends. Amen.

Villanovan Nov 1916 Villanovan 1916 Nov poem

Images from the Villanova University Digital Library.

‘Caturday post by Luisa Cywinski, writer for the Communication and Service Promotion team and team leader of Access Services.


This year, I am most thankful for the Library.

happy-thanksgiving-beautiful-turkey-card_zJ7jH9OdIt’s Thanksgiving week and to celebrate the holiday, this article was written by Kallie Stahl, graduate assistant on the Library Events & Outreach team. She is currently pursuing her MA in communication at Villanova University.


Happy Thanksgiving! It’s that time of year again, the day we all take a moment to appreciate the blessings in our lives: family, friends, the ability to pursue dreams at Villanova and much more! As you reflect during this day of thanks (while watching football and eating pumpkin pie), don’t forget about the little things, those small everyday moments that are easy to take for granted. That being said, keep in mind the hardworking staff at Falvey Memorial Library who are here to assist you during your academic journey.

Give thanks to the Library for providing these helpful resources!

24 Hour Study Lounge and Reading Room

patrick kallie

Are you a night owl or an early riser? Do you enjoy studying in calming silence or amongst the conversations of others? Have no fear – whatever your study habits, the Library has a space for you. The first floor lounge (perfect for studying with a group of friends) and the reading room (great for reflection and concentration) are open 24 hours for your convenience. Whether you’re finishing a research paper or studying for finals, be sure to take advantage of these locations!

Research Assistance

meme kallie

No matter what stage you’re at in the research process, the librarians at Falvey are here to help. Have a question? Stop by the Library! Your subject librarian can assist you in accruing the right sources for any assignment. If you prefer working from your dorm, visit the library’s website to live chat with a librarian. There are many helpful tips and tools available through Falvey, many of which are accessible online.


Holy Grounds

coffee kallie

You never know when hunger will strike (and it usually does at the most inconvenient times … i.e. when you have no food). Rushing to get to class? Forgot to go grocery shopping? Have no fear, Holy Grounds is open all day. During a study session, grab yourself a bagel, sandwich, pretzel or salad and keep working! The greatest gift of all is the distribution of that marvelous caffeinated beverage. Coffee is brewed fresh all day – need I say more?

Free Printing

printing kallie

You can print for “free” at the Library with a valid Wildcard (if you stay under your VPrint limit, as determined by your college). Don’t waste unnecessary funds on printer ink and paper. Save yourself time and effort, exploit the library’s printing (and scanning) resources.



peter kallie

Everyone needs a study break, and while Netflix is pretty awesome, the website may not provide the movie(s) you are searching for. Call me old fashioned, but there’s something nice about watching a DVD, plus who doesn’t enjoy the special features? But when you finish watching a movie on DVD, it sadly does not suggest and provide similar movies to view. Some might view this as unfortunate, but a DVD may help you stick to your study schedule. Drop by the Library in your free time to check out a variety of novels, films and music.

Be thankful for your collegiate adventure and those that are helping you achieve your goals. Happy Thanksgiving, Wildcats!

Patrick Starr, Kip, and Oprah meme via memegenerator.net.
Coffee and Peter Griffin meme via imgur.


The Curious ‘Cat: “What are you thankful for?”

Curious Cat

This week the Curious ‘Cat asks Villanova students, “With Thanksgiving coming up, what are you thankful for?

RS10815_DSC_4229-scrAlexandra Golia—“I’m thankful for being here ‘cause I love this school and the community. And I’m obviously thankful to go home; I haven’t seen my family in a while. So I’m really excited for that and that they sent me here to such a good school. That’s what I’m thankful for.”







Alexandra Linn—“I’m thankful for the opportunity to go to college, to be at Villanova, and for my family supporting me through it.”










Nicodemo Bruzzese—“I’m always thankful for my family, my extended family, blessing me every day with paying for me to come to Villanova University—such a great campus, such great people—and for instilling such hard work and dedication in me. I thank them every day even though I can be a little bit of a pain towards them, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I thank them for pushing me to be the best.”



Mary Rugolo—“My family, definitely”












Jarrid Thelen—“Family and friends.”











Brendan Weston—“I’m really thankful for my education—being able to see the world from an expanded point of view and to come to a better understanding of the world around me.”




Reunion Weekend FAQs: Falvey Alumni Questions

WILDCAT QUESTION MARK2Other than “Where are the restrooms?” (through the lounge doors, to your left) and “When is Holy Grounds open?” (check its website), here are the questions most often asked by visiting alumni!


Am I able to look at past issues of The Villanovan?

Yes! The collected issues of the Villanovan and the Villanova Monthly are available here. Issues are fully searchable from the Library Catalog and are in PDF format for easy reading, printing and downloading.

Search the full text in the Digital Library search box or in the library Search tab.  Selected content from 1995-current in the Lexis-Nexis database is available to the Villanova community members.

Falvey has an index, in excel format, to assist in finding specific articles published in the Villanovan from 1992 through 2006.


Can I look at old Belle Air yearbooks?

Yes! These are not digitized, but the Library has paper format of the yearbooks available for browsing only during library hours.

Here is the current information on the title and holdings:

Title: Belle-air. Publisher: [Villanova, Pa. : Villanova College, 1922- . Call Number: LD4834 .S75

Available Volume  Holdings: 1922, 1924-1941, 1943-2004, 2006 to present. Ask at Circulation for the specific volume.

GRADPICTOAm I still entitled to use the Library as an alumni?

Yes! VU alumni are eligible for a free courtesy membership that allows borrowing privileges and on-site access to most of our online databases. To apply, simply come to the Falvey circulation desk with a photo ID. Check out the  ‘Alumni — Courtesy Membership’ and ‘Courtesy Member Borrowing’ pages for more information.

Villanova Alumni and residents of Radnor or Lower Merion townships may apply annually for borrowing privileges and on site access to subscription databases. There is no fee for these privileges.

Villanova University Catalogs

Are you on social media?

Heck yeah! We are on social media! Follow both the main library and the digital library on a wide selection of platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads, Google+ and Pinterest! Or, get a great sampling of all of them on our new Rebelmouse account.

Thanks to Sue Ottignon, the Good Places to Start librarian, for her help on this post!


The Curious ‘Cat: “What’s the most surprising thing you carry … ?”

Curious Cat

This week the Curious ‘Cat asks Villanova students, “What’s the most surprising thing you carry in your backpack?

Christian Cullen LopezChristian Cullen Lopez—“My CE notebook. It’s for business: Competitive Effectiveness.”











Marie Griffin—“I have some applesauce.”











Xiaomeng Zhong—“fruit: an apple and an orange.”












Kylie Frankowski—“I always have tissues and wipes. My friends tease me because I’m like a mom.










Daniel Craft—“A bottle of Dayquil.”











Deyjah Foster
—“Piano sheet music: I have 30 pieces of piano sheet music I carry to play at cyber lounge whenever I have free time … Every now and then I carry a Japanese dictionary.”


The Curious ‘Cat: “What could you not live without?”

Curious Cat

This week the Curious ‘Cat asks Villanova students, “Name one thing that you, as a Villanova student, could not live without.

Sam Vitale


Sam Vitale—“Whether in the Library or the individual places inside of each of the buildings, just a quiet place to study. That would be tough to live without.”



Abigail Ramey





Abigail Ramey—“My wallet was stolen (in Philadelphia on Friday), and I’m living fine without that. … My laptop’s number one, I think. I’m pretty tied to the Internet here now that the classes are all online. [I also couldn’t live without] my morning cup of coffee.”


Joseph Un




Joseph Un—“That’s really simple: a cell phone.”


Gene Alpin








Gene Alpin—“My family, the support of my family”








Evangelia Makrygiannis


Evangelia Makrygiannis—“Just seeing everyone’s smiling faces around campus … if everyone was sad all the time and no one said ‘Hi’ to each other, it wouldn’t be happy.”


Joseph Splendido






Joseph Splendido—“The late-night hours at the Spit [Donahue Court]. It’s really nice to study late there … around 11:00 p.m. or 12:00. It’s a good quiet place.”


Where is Nova now?

Last fall, while still new to Villanova, I wrote my very first blog post about Nova, the dog I was raising for The Seeing Eye. Since some of you may be wondering what happened to Nova after she returned to The Seeing Eye last November, I thought it was time for an update.

While I anxiously waited to hear if Nova would pass her preliminary tests and be placed with a trainer, her mom, Carey, was busy with a litter of new puppies (more on that in a minute).

In the beginning of January, after what felt like an eternity, I finally heard that Nova was placed with a trainer. She sent me an update by postcard.  Nova postcardIn April, my family and I were invited to her Town Walk, the graduation ceremony where she showed all that she learned in her months of harness training. Nova passed (!) but honestly, there was no doubt in my mind she would make the program. Nova went into the May class to wait for her human match.

The Seeing Eye’s program is similar to college; The Seeing Eye is the campus and the blind humans are the students. Classes are composed of students and canine guides waiting to be paired. Every month a new class goes to The Seeing Eye’s campus where they enter into a class with students and stay on campus in dorm-style rooms for about thirty days of training with their canine match. In June I received a letter; Nova met her match in the May class. She met her blind best friend for life! I cried the happiest of tears. I am still completely overjoyed.


nova town walk

Nova “rests” and poses for pictures at the completion of her Town Walk.


The letter from Nova’s trainer was the icing on the cake. Her trainer wrote “I have to thank you for everything you did to get Nova ready for her life as a Seeing Eye dog. We could not do what we do without families like you. You should be proud of Nova’s success because it stems from you. Her success wouldn’t have been possible without you. All your love and care paid off!”

Before Nova left, I wrote a letter to her future owner, a person I will never know personally. I wanted Nova’s match to know what it was like raising Nova, what she was like as a puppy, and lastly, how grateful I was to have the opportunity to raise her. I started my letter with “Dear Nova’s owner,” and ended it with four short sentences: “I feel blessed to have been given the opportunity to raise this sweet girl. I am excited that Nova was chosen to be your guide. I hope she fills your days with laughter and smiles, and your heart with love. I am thrilled knowing she will provide you with the exhilarating experience of traveling with a Seeing Eye dog.”

Nova graduation photo

As I mentioned earlier, momma pup Carey has been busy. She had a litter of nine puppies on Christmas Eve: another “N” litter.

Carey Nellie pups

Nellie is hidden somewhere in the puppy pile.


Nellie Chapel Selfie

Nellie poses in front of St. Thomas of Villanova Church.

Just before Valentine’s Day, I welcomed seven week old Nellie into my life. Just like her half-sister Nova, Nellie will spend 12-15 months with me learning and growing. You may have already seen her around campus; she usually makes a weekly visit.

Here are a few helpful tips for when you come across a working dog: Do not call the guide dog’s name, make eye contact, feed or talk to a working dog in harness. It is always best to treat the dog as if he is not there. Do not pet a guide dog when he is wearing the harness. If the dog is resting without his harness, ask the owner before you pet the dog and respect the person’s decision if they say no. As a general rule of thumb, please be sure to always ask the human handling the dog, whether in a vest or harness, if it is okay to pet, interact with or even speak to the dog.

If you are interested in learning more about The Seeing Eye or puppy raising please visit The Seeing Eye’s website.



Come out to the 2015 Special Olympics Fall Festival—held the weekend of November 6, rain or shine. Stop by The Seeing Eye’s table, and meet the puppies in training.


Article by Laura Matthews, Library Events and Outreach Specialist. RS10578_DSC_3989-scr




VuFind Summit 2015: Technology Reaching New Heights!


For those who don’t know, VuFind is an open-source library resource portal designed and developed for libraries right here by Villanova University’s own Falvey Memorial Library. VuFind replaces the traditional online public access catalog, enabling users to search and browse through all of a library’s resources. We are proud to say that components of this system have been implemented in institutions all over the world!

In order to continue conversations about the system, Falvey Memorial Library has been the home base of several VuFind meetings over the years. In fact, on October 12 and 13, the 2015 VuFind Summit brought to Falvey about fifteen software developers from a variety of places, including Germany and Finland, to discuss the use and future course of VuFind. This event continued some conversations begun at an even larger “community meeting” held the previous week in Germany.

VuFind Conference 2015

A group shot of the 2015 VuFind Summit Conference attendees!

Presentations at the conference covered some unconventional uses of VuFind – for example, as a website to document a painting restoration project, and a set of genealogy databases – as well as providing tips on how best to manage the software, including a fascinating discussion on how to enable the software to run without interruption even when searching huge numbers of records under heavy load.

The planning session and subsequent “hackfest” led to some useful discussions about interoperability and reusability and suggest that future development of the software will focus on allowing VuFind to interact with a wider variety of systems and be reused in novel ways. Welcoming developers from distant places to interact in person also led to some useful knowledge sharing, particularly with regard to new features of VuFind’s underlying tools, and this exchange of knowledge will likely result in performance improvements in the next release of the package.

Demian Katz took notes at the 2015 VuFind Summit.

Demian Katz took notes at the 2015 VuFind Summit.

It is conventional programmer’s wisdom that “software is never done,” and this is certainly true of VuFind – a mature and widely used package that nonetheless always has room for growth and improvement. Regular meetings like the VuFind Summit help to re-energize that growth and keep the project alive and on track.

Contributed by Demian Katz, library technology development specialist


‘Caturday: Dia de Los Muertos

The Day of the Dead is traditionally celebrated to remember relatives and friends who have passed away. Let us also remember the Wildcats who have gone before us and, last but not least, those beloved pets who gave us comfort.

For those who wish to celebrate Dia de los Muertos with La Misa en Español, or the Mass in Spanish, a special mass will be said today in Corr Hall at 5:30 p.m.

According to Tim O’Connell, “we will remember our deceased loved ones during the Mass. Please bring a photo or symbol for someone for whom you would like to pray. All are welcome! Bilingual missals will be available to follow the Mass. We will have music this Saturday and Mexican food after Mass.”



Find Day of the Dead resources on the library website. You can also attend Dia de los muertos activities on Monday, November 2 from 10-11 a.m. in the St. Augustine Center.

La Misa en Español

Dia de los Muertos skeleton cats artwork by Naomi on DeviantArt.com.

Poster art courtesy of Villanova University Hispanic Initiatives.

‘Caturday post by Luisa Cywinski, writer, Communication & Service Promotion, and department head, Access Services.


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Last Modified: October 31, 2015