MARS: Update from the Emerging Technologies in Reference Section

Cathy Larson, Editor
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Message From the Chair
Annual Conference time is almost here, and I hope to see many of you in Las Vegas! The Emerging Technologies in Reference Section (MARS) has two programs and three discussion forums planned as well as several committee meetings, so mark your calendars and we hope to see you often. If you haven’t tried out the ALA Scheduler, I recommend it. ALA will keep this service up-to-date to reflect last minute room changes, and they monitor the site and may add seats to events where they see high advance demand.

Friday, start out with RUSA 101: Network, Get Oriented, Get Involved. This is a fun orientation and get-together. It will be on Friday, June 27, 2014 from 3:00-4:00 P.M. at Las Vegas Convention Center, room S222.

Saturday morning, June 28, from 8:30-10:00 AM, the All Committee Meeting will be in Bally’s, Skyview 4. If you’re on a committee already, this is your primary meeting time. If you’re a member who can volunteer to help with the work of the section, this is a chance to stop by, talk with the committee chairs and members in one location, and find a committee that fits your interests.

Next up on Saturday, our Management of Electronic Resources Committee is sponsoring “Libraries in the Course Management System: Best Practices and New Directions,” held in the Las Vegas Convention Center, room N263C from 10:30-11:30 A.M. for what is sure to be a lively conversation.

Saturday afternoon from 1:00-2:30 PM will be the MARS Chair’s Program at the Las Vegas Convention Center N263C. We will begin by honoring Anne Houston, this year’s recipient of the MARS Achievement Recognition Award (My Favorite Martian). Then we have two great speakers lined up, Angela Zoss, Data Visualization Coordinator, Duke University and Josh Boyer, Head, User Experience, North Carolina State University. They will present their perspectives and experiences with data visualization in a session called “New Directions for Data Visualization in Library Public Services.”

Capping off Saturday, from 3:00-4:00 PM in the Las Vegas Convention Center, room S228 will be “Discovering Open Access Articles: Maximum Access, Maximum Visibility!,” co-sponsored with ALCTS and ACRL.

On Sunday, June 29, join us for our Planning Committee meeting from 8:30-10:00 AM at the Las Vegas Hotel in the Boardroom. If you are interested in observing the work and possibly volunteering for a committee for the coming year, please join us.

Sunday from 10:30-11:30 A.M. in the Paris Chablis room will be the Virtual Reference Discussion Group of Houston Libraries. Sunday from 1:00-2:30 P.M., at the Convention Center, Exhibit Hall, Meeting Room C, the Hot Topics Discussion Group will host a forum.

And the last event of Sunday evening will be the RUSA Awards Reception and Volunteer Appreciation Party from 5:00-6:30 P.M. at Caesars Palace, Florentine II-IV.

On Monday, June 30, if you’re still in town, plan to stop by our MARS Executive Committee Meeting from 8:30-10:00 A.M. at the Las Vegas Convention Center, room N202. The meeting is where MARS Committee and Discussion Forum chairs, as well as MARS representatives to RUSA level committees share their activities of the last six months and their upcoming plans. We are meeting jointly with the RSS Executive Committee for the last hour (this meeting will be in N102) to coordinate activities of our two sections.

If you haven’t yet had a chance to volunteer, please go to, or contact Stephanie Graves, Vice Chair, Emerging Technologies in Reference Section (MARS) at

For those of you who have already volunteered, thanks for all your contributions to MARS and MARS members this year. You are making a difference. It’s been an affirming experience to be Chair this year and have the opportunity to work with such an outstanding group of Librarians.


Sam Stormont
Chair, Emerging Technologies in Reference Section (MARS) 2013-2014