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RU Libraries share expertise with Myanmar librarians

November 14, 2014
Yin Win Htike, left, and Hlaing Hlaing Gyi, right, stand with University Librarian Marianne I. Gaunt, center, during a ‘Welcome to Rutgers’ reception in early October.

Yin Win Htike, left, and Hlaing Hlaing Gyi, right, stand with University Librarian Marianne I. Gaunt, center, during a ‘Welcome to Rutgers’ reception in early October.

As part of an effort to help rebuild Myanmar’s higher education capacity, by sharing best practices in academic libraries, the Rutgers University Libraries hosted two librarians from Myanmar university libraries for a month long visit in October 2014. The librarians’ visit to the Rutgers University Libraries was part of series of visits by Myanmar librarians in 2014 to well-regarded university libraries, organized and hosted by a consortium that included Arizona State University, Northern Illinois University, the University of Washington in Seattle, and Rutgers.  

The series of visits coordinated by the four universities in 2014 grew out discussions and meetings with directors of Myanmar university libraries, which took place in February 2013 as part of a historic visit to Myanmar by leaders of United States universities. The Institute of International Education in cooperation with the United States State Department sponsored the February 2013 visit.  

The two Myanmar librarians visiting Rutgers, Hlaing Hlaing Gyi – a librarian at Yangon University Library and Yin Win Htike – an assistant librarian at Universities Central Library, were selected for this encounter based on the diversity of their backgrounds, their ability to act as change agents, and their strong English language skills. Hlaing and Yin were based in the Alexander Library during their visit and traveled extensively to see library facilities throughout the New Brunswick and Piscataway campuses.  

While at Rutgers Hlaing and Yin met with library administrators, librarians, and staff in Research and Instruction Services, Human Resources, Special Collections and University Archives, Integrated Information Systems, Distributed Technical Services, Access Services, Central Technical Services, Scholarly Communication Center, the John Cotton Dana Library, the Health Sciences libraries, and several other units. Hlaing and Yin heard presentations about instructional technology, collections, archives, librarian subject specialists, consortial purchasing, digitization, curation, digital services, circulation and access services, information literacy, reference services, and other topics.

The Rutgers University Libraries were pleased to host this intensive research tour and cultural encounter with Hlaing and Yin. We look forward to continued collaboration and exchanges with Myanmar university libraries in the years ahead. Please contact Triveni Kuchi, social sciences/instructional services librarian, at kuchi@rulmail.rutgers.edu for program details or any other information.