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Monmouth University Team Wins Technology Award for ‘MAP IT’ Project

A photo of three people
From left to right: Janine Frederick, Robert Carsey, and Sara Margaret Rizzo

On Friday, May 31, the College and University Section of the New Jersey Library Association and the New Jersey Chapter of the Association of College and Research Libraries awarded the 2019 Technology Award to a Monmouth University team for their project “MAP IT Library Catalog Enhancement.”  The award was presented to the team of Sara Margaret Rizzo, systems librarian; Robert Carsey, director of server operations; Janine Frederick, systems administrator; Allison Shields, access services manager; and Jing Zhou, associate professor, Department of Art and Design.

The “MAP IT” project improves library users’ ability to navigate the Murry and Leonie Guggenheim Memorial Library and its resources.  A library catalog-based mapping application, it shows the approximate location of books in the library’s collections—including the floor, section, and shelf number. Users can access the map location by conducting a library catalog search and viewing the full record display.

The Monmouth University team included cross-unit collaboration, with individuals from the library, art and design, and information management coming together to create the application.

University Librarian Kurt Wagner said, “This project not only involved the technical skill required to create the application, but also an excellent effort in collaborative interdepartmental organization to bring together a team, communicate, and implement a new technology that facilitates use of the library’s print collection.”

According to Wagner, this enhancement of the library’s online catalog reduces the barriers to finding materials, helps users get to know the library’s layout, and makes users more comfortable and confident in searching for and finding books.

The Technology Innovation Award honors a librarian or group of librarians for innovative use and application of technology in a New Jersey academic library.  The award may be given either in recognition of a specific project, or for an ongoing delivery of innovative technology applications. The purpose of the award is to recognize distinguished leadership in developing new technologies for academic libraries.