Member Spotlight: Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Library


Photo courtesy of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Library

The work of a library is never done. Just ask the staff of Memorial-Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) Library who, on top of managing a range of resources and services, are also consumed with the redesign of their Library’s website and pending launch. “All staff is engaged and involved. We have shared surveys, conducted focus group sessions, done usability tests, had one-on-one conversations with users in order to gain a better understanding of what our clients need in order to get their work done,” says Donna Gibson, Director of Library Services.

A new and improved website to be introduced by the end of the year is not the only brag-worthy resource the library extends to the public and its clients. Not to be left behind in the rapidly changing world of emerging technologies, MSKCC Library’s reference team meticulously reviewed and selected the most appropriate mobile apps for their user community and created a LibGuide. The LibGuide — for clinicians, biomedical researchers, nurses, and other medical professionals — is a gateway to library resources like journals, databases, catalogs, RSS feeds and other reference materials, all available on a mobile device. The Library also hosts a blog and a Twitter feed to keep their user community informed by sharing research, resources, and news.

In addition, their Systematic Review Service has led to librarians’ inclusion as co-authors on a number of publications, with several more in the queue. Ms. Gibson further remarks, “Working with our users on a systematic review has been very rewarding and we firmly believe as part of the research/publication team that we have done our part to ensure that the right search strategy was used to obtain the best search results and tease out the most appropriate papers.”

The mission of MSKCC Library is aligned with the purpose of the world renowned cancer center; to improve patient care, provide superb support for clinical and laboratory research, and enhance education. The latter is greatly exemplified with the contributions that Memorial-Sloan Kettering authors make to the body of scholarly literature. With the Library’s Synapse: Your Connection to MSK Authors, users can research and identify the intellectual output of MSKCC and the research being done. Currently, the library has literature from 2007 to present with the hope to go back as far as 1996. Maybe then this Library’s work will be done, or perhaps, just beginning.

This spotlight was written by Clarissa Cummings, with input from Donna Gibson.

Interested in having your institution highlighted in our member spotlight? Contact Member Services Manager, Tom Nielsen.