All posts by Shawn P. Calhoun

Letter to Library Santa

The library decorated our book drop as Santa’s Mailbox and we received our first letter within hours. After reflecting for some time on what we might do in response, we decided that posting here made the most sense. If you wrote the letter (or you didn’t) and feel that we could respond differently, please let us know.

Dear L.B.,

This was the first year we’ve put out a mailbox for the library Santa and we are grateful that you took time to deliver our first Christmas letter to Library-Santa.letter-to-library-santa_31379712425_o

We share your heartfelt concerns for the homeless. There are few things that bring us as much sorrow as knowing that there are people young and old in our world who have so little and must often rely on the good hearts of others for daily survival.

Your letter bringing the apparent plight of one person to our attention brings us joy – certainly not in the situation of the person seeking shelter and care – but in that you show the compassion to reach out on their behalf. Thank you.

As much as the library would like to offer services to folks who need assistance, we are not positioned with the experience and the resources to do what you ask. That said, we want you to know that there are resources in The City that this person can call upon. Our suggestion is that, if you feel so moved, consider sharing the contact information for The San Francisco City and County’s Human Services Agency. HSA is a reputable and reliable place for anyone who needs assistance or is looking for more information about support services.

All of that said, we encourage you to carefully consider if approaching this individual is the best thing for you to do. We rarely ever know for certain what someone’s story is or that things are as they appear to be. If you do not feel comfortable reaching out to the person who appears to be seeking shelter on campus, please feel free to contact a USF staff member or USF Public Safety. Of course, we completely trust that you will discern how you will proceed.

Now, to your point about serving coffee in the library. We hear you. There is now a café in the Atrium serving coffee, pastries and a few other treats. The Atrium Café is open M-F 8:00A– 1:00P (spring and fall semesters) and we are in conversation with Bon Appétit to expand the service hours and menu. Hopefully we’ll soon have good news for the entire campus community on the coffee front.

Thank you again for your letter L.B. and we hope you have a peaceful Christmas holiday overflowing with joy, family and friends.

Sincerely,  Gleeson Library




Gleeson Game Night April 12th

Gleeson Game Night
Game Night April 12

Gleeson Gaming — Game night is right around the corner. We’ll be setting up consoles and board games April 12 (Sat) 3p-7p in the Atrium and all are welcome to stop by and play.

This time around we will also have students demoing games they have designed. Professor Scott Murray’s (Assistant Professor, Design) will have a demo setup showcasing the work of USF students in his Interaction Design class.

Word on the street – free pizza as well. Nothing more fun than taking over the Atrium for an afternoon of gaming – we hope to see you there!!

An Evening with USF Alumni Authors

Please join the Gleeson Library | Geschke Learning Resource Center and the University of San Francisco Alumni network for an evening of celebration as we recognize University of San Francisco alumni authors. Come and make a new connection in the vibrant alumni network of writers and artists in the San Francisco community.

Thursday, Feb. 27th from  6:00 – 8:00 p.m. in the Gleeson Library atrium.

  • San Francisco Cliff House
    The San Francisco Cliff House burning on Sept 7, 1907. From James R. Smith’s ‘San Francisco’s Lost Landmarks’ / Photo via Library of Congress

    Hear from San Francisco historian and author Jim Smith ’78, whose works include Playland at the Beach, The Golden Years.

  • Enjoy an entertaining trip to the bustling USF campus of the early 1960’s featuring author and folk musician Jerry Burgan ’67.
  • Peruse a select display of over 150 alumni publications from the library collection.

More information about the event, including registration information, is available at the USF Alumni website. Visit the Gleeson Library alumni authors page for a preliminary list of books that will be on display at the event.


Valentine’s Day (week!) at Gleeson Library

VD Craft TableIf you have been around Gleeson library this week (in person, or on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook), you’ve probably noticed that we’re very excited about Valentine’s Day. On Wednesday our craft table went up. Tons of supplies – glitter, paper, pens, stamps, stickers, candy – to you make your own Valentines Day cards.

Blind Date with a Book - VDOur Blind Date With a Book launched this past Thursday. For this one, we picked a bunch of books that go well with such a romantic holiday, wrapped them with beautiful paper and set them out for folks to pick. Simple, but so much fun!!

VD ButtonsFinally, on Friday (VD day this year), we started to give away a small number of Valentines Day buttons. The button with two people is from a 1927 Eric Gill wood engraving titled The Soul And The Bride (also available in a book titled The Song of the Soul). The second button is from a 1997 Arion Press edition of Shakespeare’s sonnets. If you would like to see the Gill woodcut or the Shakespeare sonnet — both are viewable in the Gleeson Library’s Donohue Rare Book Room.

We hope you had as much fun as we did with Valentine’s Day this year — we love you Dons!!

Instagram – Library Shelfie Day 1/29/14

Gleeson #LibraryShelfie Day January 29, 2014
Gleeson #LibraryShelfie Day January 29, 2014

#libraryshelfie day on Instagram is  Wednesday January 29.  What’s a library shelfie? It’s just like a selfie, but taken with books. You can shoot your photo in Gleeson, at your favorite bookstore, in front of your own library — wherever you and books happen to be! If you’re into being in the photo great – but certainly not necessary. Just Tag your Instagram pics with @gleesonlibrary #libraryshelfie and please tag our pals at New York Public Library #NYPL library who came up with the idea.

UPDATE:  There’s a small wager between Gleeson Library and SJSU King Library. The Library with the most #librarySelfies tagged (#GleesonLIbrary #USFCA for us or #SpartanShelfie #KingLibrary for the folks at SJSU) wins bragging rights and a sweet treat. Gleeson has put up a delicious box of San Franciscso’s finest Ghiradelli chocolates and SJSU has put up a box of Schurra’s chocolates.  I can’t wait to see the final results with USF on top!! I look forward to sharing those delicious Schurra’s chocolates with you Dons!

Library Book Dominos!

Gleeson 2nd Floor Study Area
Gleeson 2nd Floor Study Area

Over the last few weeks we’ve done a little rearranging on the 2nd floor of Gleeson | Geschke. We love the way the study space looks and we hope you do too! While we had the floor cleared of furniture, library folks kicked around a few ideas on how we could have a little fun. Skate ramp? No go. Bowling? Nope. Nerf wars? Promising, but not this time. After much discussion, this is what we came up with.

Fifteen library staff and student helpers lined up 1,411 books over the span of 6 hours to bring in the new study space on the second floor of Gleeson Library | Geschke Center. The last book, caught by Janet Carmona (library staff) was “Spectacle” by USFCA prof Susan Steinberg.

Full disclosure – lots of inspiration for this project came from the Seattle Public Library. SPL holds the world record for book dominos. Also, many thanks to USF’s Office of Communications and Marketing for making the video.