Photo credit: BKL, c/o www.travelmag.com, shared under the Creative Commons license
A new presidential administration is underway. Regardless of your political beliefs, it’s a good time to remember that as U.S. citizens, we have the duty and the right to speak up about issues we care about.
If you’re new to the civic process in general, our Political Science Guide includes some great resources to familiarize yourself with government processes, including books and websites.
Here are some ways to stay connected and to help you voice concerns:
- Join the email list for a nonprofit organization that represents a cause you care about.
- National Public Radio (NPR) has a new show, titled Indivisible, in which listeners with differing political views are encouraged to call in and discuss concerns. In the Chicago area, the NPR station is 91.5 FM.
- White House Petitions are online petitions that you can start or sign. The White House is required to address petitions that reach at least 100,000 signatures.
- Regulations.gov is an online database of proposed changes or additions to regulations. The government is required to review and consider submissions on this site, so speak up!
- Contact your Senator or Representative. This site has some tips on the different methods of contact, and allows you to find your elected officials by entering your zip code.
Like any organization, the government needs to know what’s working (or not) for its people. By staying informed and providing feedback, YOU can help shape the direction of our nation!
Photo credit: Solja Virkkunen; shared under the Creative Commons license
Feeling prepared for final exams and assignments can help you feel less nervous during this inherently stressful time. But how to prepare when there’s SO MUCH to do? We have some suggestions:
Use a time management method, such as the Pomodoro Technique, to make the most of your time. Make a list of what needs to be done and make yourself a study schedule. Limit distractions by keeping cell phones silent and out of sight during study time.
Create your study space by finding a quiet area that allows you to focus on the task at hand. The library is a great place to work! It’s quiet, and sometimes it helps to be near other students who are in the same “need-to-study” boat. If you’re studying with a group, you may also check out a study room for 2 hours per day.
Keep yourself well by eating right, getting enough sleep, and taking periodic mental breaks to do something you enjoy. If you’re looking for leisure reading material for such breaks, we have some great book suggestions.
Finals will be over before you know it. You can do this!
Photo credit: daniyal62; shared under the Creative Commons license
Learning about others’ lives can help us to reflect on our own. This Thanksgiving Recess (November 24-27), consider reading a memoir. The library has several on display this month (they’re located behind the cookbooks), but if you’re interested in a title that we don’t have, you can place a request for it using our interlibrary loan service. If one of the other 76 libraries within our consortium owns the title, it will be ready for you to pick up in just a few days. As always, please ask us if you have any questions about finding or borrowing materials.
Here’s a sample of the memoirs available to borrow at the PSC Library:
Image modified under the Creative Commons license. Photo credit: arbyreed
Thanksgiving is around the corner! Do you need to bring a dish to a Thanksgiving celebration? Or perhaps you’re just looking to incorporate some variety into your daily diet?
The library holds a great number of recipes for special diets—for example, gluten-free, vegan, paleo, etc.—and that represent a wide range of cuisines. Check out this month’s display in the library, or, go online to access a huge selection of recipes in the form of eBooks and magazine articles. (Current PSC students and faculty members can even access these digital materials from home!)
To find recipes online using the PSC catalog, first select the Advanced Search option on the library homepage.
Within the Advanced Search, type in “cooking” OR “cookbooks” into the search box. Note: the default Boolean operator is “and.” By switching the operator to “or,” a larger number of results will appear. Also select the “SU Subject Terms” field from the drop-down menu next to the text boxes. Click “Search.” This will retrieve the library items that have been categorized into the “cooking” or “cookbooks” categories.
Now, you can browse through the results, or add another term to the last search box in the top if you’re looking for a specific diet, cuisine, or ingredient. Limiting the Source Types to Magazines and eBooks will exclude scholarly reports and articles related to food (these types of sources don’t typically include recipes).
As always, please contact us if you have any questions about using the Advanced Search (or if you have any other questions about using the library!).
Image: Library of Congress, LCCN 92506070
October 8-10, 1871: Thanks to a combination of very dry conditions, a predominance of wooden buildings, and a smaller fire from the previous day which compromised the efficacy of firefighters and equipment, what would be known as the Great Chicago Fire ruined about a third of the city. We might never know for sure if Mrs. O’Leary’s cow was to blame for the blaze, but check out these four great resources from the PSC Library and beyond to learn more about this important event in Chicago history!
- Chicago Tribune Historical Archive
Primary sources were created by individuals during the time of the historical event, rather than by later researchers. Newspapers are a great example of a primary source, and the PSC Library has digital access to the archives of the Chicago Tribune.
One way to find articles created around the time of the Great Chicago Fire is to look at the news articles published around October 8-10, 1871. To do this, first find the archive that covers the time period of interest. In this case, since we are searching for articles created during 1871, click on the fifth archive in the list, “Chicago Tribune (1860-1872).” Once there, you have the option to search within the publication or to browse specific dates.
Continue reading “This week in 1871: the Great Chicago Fire”