We discussed ways that we can make better use of the Unit Computing Specialists (UCSs) across the New Brunswick libraries. The Steering Group decided to meet with all of the USCs, together with Kevin McGuire, in May to explore ways of working together more cohesively to improve public services, particularly in light of the current budget crisis. Marty, Tom, and Kayo, as reference team leaders who supervise UCSs, have respectfully declined to meet individually with Grace Agnew, AUL for Digital Library Systems, and Valeda Dent, AUL for Research and Instructional Services, to discuss the UCS reporting structure. The Steering Group will meet with them as a group at a later date.
This was a broad ranging discussion prompted, in part, by the concern within the New Brunswick Libraries Faculty over the UCS issue. For some time there has been some dissatisfaction expressed over the relationship between technology and public services across the Rutgers University Libraries. Many feel that technical projects and infrastructure are developed without due regard for their overarching purpose, improved public services. There is general concern that the future directions of RUL, a public service institution, are being determined to an extent outside of the context of public services. The Steering Group felt that we need to find ways to advocate more forcefully for Research and Instructional Services (RIS) in New Brunswick and system wide. Tom and Jane will work on preparing for a discussion of this important topic at the New Brunswick Libraries faculty meeting on April 24.