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'Caturday: Falvey Wildcats in Action

Wet booksWhen a water pipe broke unexpectedly in Old Falvey Hall very early on Wednesday morning, the entire library staff and several University departments quickly mobilized to move the books, cover the stacks, clean up the water, repair the leak, and to keep regular library services operating smoothly. Students, library staff, the library director, custodians — everyone worked side by side. There was damage to a small percentage of books, but hundreds, if not thousands, were moved out of harm’s way.  It was the perfect example of Wildcat teamwork in action at Falvey!




The Highlighter: How many times can I renew a Falvey book?


Want to renew books online? … or learn how many renewals remain? This video shows how to access your library account and accomplish those tasks. (Enable Closed Captioning for silent viewing):

For additional “How to” videos, click the “Help” button on Falvey’s homepage.


The Best of the Highlighter: Discover Falvey’s Many Study Spaces


Click here for the original article and video.




The Best of The Highlighter: Library Policies for DVDs


Click here for the video about library policies for DVDs.


'Caturday Cat Meme Collection

It’s the last ‘Caturday before graduation and, well, you might notice a theme today. We’re not open this weekend, but our book drop is!

caturday overdue books


caturday return books right meow


caturday turn in books

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


The Highlighter: Need a Quiet Place to Study?


This video provides a lighthearted look at a resource the Library takes seriously: quiet study spaces.  (Enable Closed Captioning for silent viewing):

For additional “How to” videos, click the “Help” button on Falvey’s homepage.



'Caturday: The Nights Belong to Us Wildcats

Every dog has his day, but the nights belong to us Wildcats!

You can take your pick of 24-hour study in the Falvey Hall reading room, lobby, or basement soft seating or, stick with the tried and true main library seating on all four floors, most nights until 3 a.m., and the 24-hour lounge.

Whichever you choose, good luck on your final exams and papers, Wildcats!

falvey at night old falvey moon




‘Caturday feature by Luisa Cywinski, writer for Commmunication & Service Promotion team and team leader, Access Services team.


The Highlighter: Want to Study Smarter (not Harder)? Take Four


Uncommon yet practical tips from a professional study coach to help you achieve optimal results—interested? Nicole Subik of Villanova University’s Learning Support Services has prepared four quick-and-easy strategies.

For additional study strategies or techniques for time management, test-taking, test anxiety and more, contact or walk into Learning Support Services on Falvey’s second floor.

Learning Support Services


Falvey Pilots First-of-its-Kind Drone-Delivery Service

You may have heard that Google, Amazon and even Dominos have explored the possibility of using drones to reduce their delivery times from days to hours, or hours to minutes. Falvey Memorial Library is proud to make it official: on Thursday, April 2, Falvey will begin using quad-copters to deliver books to students in their residence halls.

The Library has partnered with California-based 3DR, “North America’s largest personal drone company,” to implement a service in which a student living on campus may request drone delivery of a library book directly to his/her room. The stated delivery time is 20 minutes, but testing in St. Monica Hall over spring break demonstrated that students can expect delivery within 10 minutes.


Saint Monica Hall resident Steve Halek received delivery of Katherine Ann Porter’s classic Ship of Fools in under ten minutes.

How could this happen?

University alumnus Thomas Mullen, ’11 COE, ’13 MS, became a research-and-development engineer for 3DR upon graduating from Villanova. Mullen explains, “We [3DR] had been competing with DJI for the Amazon Prime Air contract, and we won the bid in November. Then the FAA comes out with these new regulations in December and puts everything on hold.” New FAA regulations prohibit the use of drones “for payment or commercial purposes.”

Mullen continues, “That’s when I thought of the Library; it’s non-profit, so the FAA rules would allow it [drone book delivery]. I worked at Falvey as a student, and I thought this program could set a precedent for other colleges. I wrote up a proposal and showed it to my boss. She liked the idea of 3DR being the first to capture this new college-library market.”


See the new IRIS+ models zooming down the hall. No, really – zoom in! 😉

“Our new IRIS+ model marks the next generation of quad-rotor helicopters” Mullen exults. “Its arms and landing gear are made of sturdy carbon fiber, giving it remarkable strength. Its strong yet lightweight frame, combined with its four tiger motors, give the IRIS+ a 3 lb. payload capacity. That translates to one large library book or two medium-sized ones. Also, its navigation system (uBlox GPS with integrated magnetometer) easily handles autonomous book delivery within a college campus.”

Students are warned to watch overhead for the book delivery drones, particularly on windy days.

Students are warned to watch overhead for the book delivery drones, particularly on windy days or when anything by James Clavell is enroute.



Jesse Flavin, Access Services specialist at Falvey, speculates, “As other college libraries implement drone delivery, I expect inter-library drones will be the next step. Students’ E-ZBorrow and ILL requests will simply bypass Falvey and be delivered directly from the lending library to the students’ rooms, further reducing the time between request and delivery.”

To request drone delivery, students who live on campus may click the “Drone Delivery” button in Falvey’s catalog. 2015 - 04 Apr - drone book delivery 4As this screen shot shows, only circulating books are available through this service (Reference, Special Collections books, journals etc. must remain in the Library). Students who are not in their room when the drone arrives or who otherwise abuse this system will lose their drone-delivery privileges.

There will be no book-return service.

For additional information, please contact Falvey’s drone-delivery coordinator at

Gerald Dierkes is senior copyeditor for the Communication and Publications team, a service desk supervisor for Access Services, and a liaison to the Department of Theater.


Women’s History Month: Power & Magic in the Kitchen

Historically speaking, the kitchen is a woman’s domain. Women were chained to their stoves for hours on end. Cooking skills were right up there with other desirable traits, such as purity, appearance, and obedience to men. As Laura Schenone puts it in her book, A thousand years over a hot stove, “cooking reveals itself as a source of power and magic, and, at the same time, a source of oppression in women’s lives.”

To paraphrase Schenone, what women learned and what they knew wouldn’t be found in a book. It was passed down in the oral tradition, shared with daughters and friends. Women shared information and found support for more than just cooking. They relied on each other to learn healing remedies, to craft utensils and containers, to secure moral support, and to learn survival skills.

When times made life difficult and challenged even the most experienced cook, women found ways to feed their families with what little food was available. They would pool their resources or come to the aid of a hungry family. Women created new recipes to stretch the limited types and quantities of food.

Not unlike other American households, during World War II, Eleanor Roosevelt’s housekeeper, Ms. Henrietta Nesbitt found ways to deal with meat rationing and developed “meat-stretcher” recipes. There is one such recipe in The Husbandman, an agricultural newspaper. This newspaper was published during America’s Gilded Age, a period when the women’s suffrage movement was strengthening in the United States.

The original recipe for scrap pie is below. My adaptation follows the image.

Scrap Pie – 1886

The husbandman, v. XIII, no. 640, Wednesday, November 24, 1886

Scrap Pie Women's History









Scrap Pie – 2015

1 lb. ground beef

1 lb. white or red potatoes, peeled and chopped into large chunks

½ large onion, finely chopped

2 tbsp. chicken, beef, or vegetable broth

1 egg, beaten

4 tbsp. butter

¼ tsp. pepper

½ tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 375°. Prepare and assemble all ingredients.

Brown the ground beef in a skillet. Drain and set aside. Sauté onion and set aside. Use 1 tbsp. butter to coat the inside of a 9” pie plate. Cover the inside bottom of the pie plate with ground beef. Drizzle broth over beef. Layer the sautéed onion over the beef. Boil chopped potatoes in large pot of water until potatoes are tender. Turn off burner, drain and return potatoes to pot. Mash potatoes until smooth. Add the beaten egg, 1 tbsp. butter, salt, and pepper to the mashed potatoes. Whisk by hand or use an electric hand mixer until smooth. Cover the beef with the mashed potato mixture. Use a dinner fork to create a design on the potatoes. Use remaining 2 tbsp. of butter to dot the top of the potatoes.

beefbeef onionsbeef potato






Bake at 375° until top is browned, about 30 – 35 minutes.

Scrap Pie done










Makes 4-6 servings. Serve with salad or cooked vegetables.

Below are links to books, articles and blogs for your reading, watching and listening pleasure.

A thousand years over a hot stove can be requested through E-ZBorrow or Interlibrary Loan.

What we lose in losing Ladies’ Home Journal (Thanks to Laura Bang, Special Collections, for the link.)

The First Kitchen

Women’s History and Food History: New Ways of Seeing American Life

#FoodieFriday: 5 Kitchen Appliances and Food Creations that Transformed Women’s Lives in the 20th Century

Women’s History Month – Audio and Video

My thanks to Michael Foight, Special Collections, for sending me the link to our digitized copy of The Husbandman.

LuisaCywinski_headshot thumbnailMonthly food blog feature by Luisa Cywinski, writer, Communication & Service Promotion, and team leader, Access Services.


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Last Modified: March 29, 2015