Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students


Book Reviews!

Amie Grosshans

This semester we are required to write three book reviews and post them to our class Google site.  We can read any YA books we want, but one of them has to feature a minority and/or LGBTQ+ character and one has to be a non-fiction or an informational text.  There are two parts to the reviews: the first is a very short blurb, two or three sentences, that explains the gist of the book, and the second is a more thorough review.  I have written one review so far and am working on the second.  Surprisingly, I had a much easier time writing the small blurb than I did the full review.  For me, it was fun to think of how to condense the book down to two or three sentences.  It forced me to think of the overarching theme of the book and what the main character is experiencing.  I knew I only had a limited amount of space to use and that helped me focus on the most important details and themes.  I love playing with words, so I really enjoyed…

A Tough Choice

Amie Grosshans

I made the difficult decision to drop my database class last week.  Since I missed the add/drop grace period, I’ll get a “W” on my transcript, but luckily that won’t affect my GPA.  It will, however, affect my graduation date because it was too late to sign up for a different class.  Instead of graduating in December, I’ll now be graduating in May.  I’m bummed about that because I was so excited to be almost done.  In the grand scheme of things, waiting another five months to graduate is not a big deal, but I still feel disappointed.  However, I know this was the right decision because I was struggling with this class.  I could have pushed through, but ultimately I decided that I don’t have the time or energy to do that right now.  I am stressed enough with all the COVID stuff and this class was just adding more stress to my life.  Even though it stinks, my peace of mind is already better.  Now I only have to focus on one class, and I won’t be extra stressed trying to get everything…

Fall 2020 and Welcome Week


It’s pretty crazy to think about how different the start to this fall semester is compared to last year. At this time last year, I was moving to Boston and now the whole world is somewhat frozen with the pandemic while Simmons is not having anything on campus this fall. But that hasn’t stopped us from trying to establish a community for our SLIS students as at the beginning of the month we had a series of digital welcome events for our new students. We had students talk with professors about the upcoming year, meeting with our Simmons librarians to help with research, a meeting for students to get to know each other and chat, and we even had a drawing for SLIS clothing at the end of the week. It was a lot of fun and if any incoming students are hesitant about attending these events the next time we have them, hopefully in person next fall, I would highly recommend going to help establish connections with professors and fellow students before your grad…

Adventures in Ethics

Sarah Callanan

We’ve completed the first week of the of the Summer 2020 term everyone!  As you know, classes at SLIS are online for this term due to the pandemic.  I’m not going to lie; I came very close to forgetting it was the first week of classes last week.   If I hadn’t received an email from my professor announcing it was the first day of class last Monday, I would have completely forgotten.  I’m taking LIS 475: Organizational and Information Ethics this summer, and as is usual for Simmons summer classes, it is only seven weeks long, but is the same amount of work as a normal semester-long course. This means we cover two weeks-worth of material a week.  If you’ve read my past posts about summer classes, you know my feelings about this.  Summer classes have a lot of content in a very short amount of time. I’m not wild about the rushed feeling, but this summer, like last summer, there is no “locked” content, so I can see everything ahead of time.  In summer…

Surprise Online School & (Not-So-Final) Farewell

Katie Carlson

If being a grad student in my final semester during COVID-19 showed me anything, it is that my friends and future librarian colleagues are amazing and ADAPTABLE. With life suddenly thrown online, I saw recorded modules, voiced-over power points, sing-a-long zoom meetings, virtual coffee dates, Animal Crossing birthday parties, YouTube story hours, interactive book club Moodle sites, WEDDINGS, and so much more! I’ve also witnessed so much patience that warms my heart! From what I’ve seen, everyone has been great about adapting their expectations and making accommodations!  Now for the second part of this little post: I’m done! I’m a whole MASTER in the field of library and information science! These two years have absolutely flown by, but I wouldn’t do anything differently! To make at-home-graduation even more special, my girlfriend made diplomas, organized a photoshoot, and even conducted a ceremony for Adaliz and me!  Grades are in, and as I write this, I have my Zoom-uation Virtual Graduation tomorrow! It might be a little unconventional, but we made it through! Signing off for now…but…

Still in Boston

Peggy Hogan-Rao

It’s been over two weeks now since everything changed, starting with St. Patrick’s Day being cancelled. A lot of my friends went back home to their families during this hard time, but I am still in Boston. My parents keep asking when I will go visit them, but considering I am from Upstate NY, where there are a lot of cases, it is a bit scary to travel there. The hardest part is knowing that there are COVID-19 cases in my hometown in the Albany area. This is real, and so close to home now. I am not completely bored in Boston, as we are in the home stretch of the semester. When I get all of my work done for student teaching, I hope I can find a way to see my family. Today, I had a video call with my online technology class. It was my first time connecting with these classmates over Zoom – so nice to see their faces! The video call was a tutorial on how to prepare for doing…

Admitted Student Session


On Saturday, we had our first admitted student information session. With everything being remote now, the session had to be moved online through Zoom. It was actually a really interesting way of having the session work. Everybody, about 120 admitted students, started in an initial Zoom session that went over the basics of SLIS such as campus, professors, rankings, that was presented by our admissions team. Some faculty members from all the concentrations then introduced themselves to give students a sense of who their future faculty will be. After some questions that came from a chat function, everybody moved into various different Zoom breakout sessions based on their specific interests or concentrations. I was placed in the Archives and History session with Professor Kathy Wisser of SLIS, Professor Sarah Leonard of the History department, and alum Sarah Nafis, to answer questions that these students had about the program. One question that was asked was about the feasibility of working fulltime and taking classes full time. I was able to address that by detailing how Simmons…

ICA: We All Shout Hooray!

Katie Carlson

A few weeks ago, I was able to snag a spot to attend the LOVE IS CALLING exhibit at the ICA with Panopticon (Simmons’ resident art libraries interest org) for FREE. It was one of the coolest installations I’ve seen in a while! LOVE IS CALLING is an installation by Yayoi Kusama that premiered in Japan in 2013. Kusama is a 90(!!!!) year old artist who has been active since the 60s. She is most known for her sculptures, massive installations, and blunt red bob. Polka dots are a common thread that run through Kusama’s sculptural work, and for good reason: Kusama was diagnosed with obsessive compulsive neurosis in the 70s, and states that the dots are a visual representation of hallucinations she has experienced since the age of 10. Kusama calls these clusters of polka dots “infinity nests,” while the full room installations are referred to as “infinity rooms.”  LOVE IS CALLING (seen left) is a prime example of one of Yayoi Kusama’s infinity rooms, which use mirrors to make rooms (and polka dots)…

Networking 101

Adaliz Cruz

I used to hate networking. I’m very much an introvert and even though I’ve worked on it and have gotten to know my introversion better I still sometimes struggle too. However, networking has allowed me to not be as intimidated as I once was by what I felt were “fancy people in the field”. Furthermore, it has landed me grants, scholarships, job interviews, and most importantly colleagues from around the world. I go to a lot of conferences and I do quite a lot of online networking too mostly through email lists, Facebook support groups, and just reaching out to people I would like to be in contact with. Sometimes I even cold email people! As a result I know my fair share of people in the field. OnceI forgot about someone I had connected with and they walked up to me excited to “finally meet the music librarian from Simmons”. I’m sure my face was worth a million!  Because of this, I constantly get asked on how I do it and how I’ve put…

New Guest Blogger!

Lindsey Clarke

Welcome to guest blogger Adaliz Cruz!  Here is her bio:  “My life can basically be summed up in three small phrases: books, sheet music, and a cup of coffee. I’m originally from Mayagüez, Puerto Rico and I moved up to Boston just for Simmons. Let me just say, what a change! I have an extensive background in music, it’s my first love. I hope to become a Reference and Instruction music librarian in the near future as I graduate in May. I’m a bit of a workaholic so I generally don’t have a ton of free time, but on the odd chance that I find myself without plans I love coffee shop hopping (local of course). One thing you should know about me is that my curls are truly my crowning glory.” Look for her posts very soon!