We’ve been working remotely since March 9, 2020. Among lots of other changes, this means we’ve had to rethink the ways in which our events are delivered. These days, we are offering online panel discussions, webinars on concrete topics, and networking events.
Here’s a list of all of our past events. Except in the cases of networking events, links to program outputs are included.
Managing a Branch Library From Home
Monday, March 30, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Public libraries around the country are closing their doors in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. This presents those of us in the industry with unforeseen challenges: how do we run a library from a distance? Join us for a Zoom call on Monday, March 30 at 4:00pm to hear how branch managers Lauren Comito (BPL) and Brian Hasbrouck (DCPL) are learning their way through managing library staff and facilities from their homes.
Moving Library Instruction and Reference Services Offsite
Tuesday, April 7, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
We’re in an unprecedented time of moving library services entirely offsite to help maintain the health and wellbeing of our communities. In this virtual conversation, we’ll talk about how reference services and library instruction can be reworked to meet the moment. We’ll be joined by Kate Adler, Director of Library Services, Metropolitan College of New York and Linda Miles, Assistant Professor – Librarian, Hostos Community College, CUNY.
Managing People and Projects from Home
Monday, April 13th, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Maintaining physical distance is especially tricky when you’re a manager of people and projects. Join our webinar on Monday, April 13 to hear how Emily Drabinski (CUNY Grad Center), Lisa Norberg (Cooper Union), and Alevtina Verbovetskaya (CUNY Office of Library Services) have been reworking their approaches to leadership in this radically altered environment. We’ll discuss working compassionately with reports, handling shifting priorities, and managing change in this stressful time.
Working Mindfully in Uncertain Times
Tuesday, April 14, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
As month two of self isolation approaches, please join us for a lunch break discussion on how to work (or look for work) with mindfulness and self-compassion. Susanne Markgren and Linda Miles, authors of the recently-published How to Thrive as a Library Professional, will join us for a reflective conversation on maintaining your well-being, finding focus in chaotic times, and building and sustaining healthy habits. This conversation will include brief activities you can do from home to start (or continue) along the path of working mindfully.
Documenting the Present Moment
Tuesday, April 21, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
For the first time in human history, we are living through a worldwide catastrophe as a networked society. Please join us for a webinar on Tuesday, April 21st at 4:00pm for presentations and a discussion on how web archiving can be employed to help us collectively remember this unprecedented and unique moment. Panelists include Mark Graham (Internet Archive), Nicole Greenhouse (New York University), Gary Price (Library Journal’s INFOdocket), and Alexander Thurman (Columbia University. This session will be moderated by Traci Mark (METRO Library Council).
Web Accessibility Tools & Best Practices
Monday, April 27, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
As libraries move to remote service provision, online accessibility has become even more important to ensure that the library is offering inclusive services and reaching all patrons. In this hands-on online workshop, we will go over best practices for accessible web design and free tools for evaluating the accessibility of your web presence and third party resources. Carli Spina is an Associate Professor and the Head of Research & Instructional Services at the FIT Library. She regularly publishes, presents, and teaches on topics related to accessibility, Universal Design, and inclusivity in libraries.
Information Inequity and Other Fault Lines Revealed by the Pandemic
Wednesday, April 29, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
The epidemic revealed what many of us have been working against for decades: the most vulnerable among us are disproportionately impacted by inequitable access to information. This online panel discussion will center those in our communities who are disproportionately suffering due to the spread of the novel coranavirus. We will discuss the challenges of providing services to marginalized communities in this crisis and share ways in which we might help. Panelists for this conversation include Kate Adler (MCNY), Leanne Ellis (DOE), Rhonda Evans Schomburg Center), and Sherell Walker (BMCC).
It Takes a Village: A Community Call for Support and Self-Care during COVID-19
Wednesday, May 6, 2:00pm – 3:00pm
In light of the effects on COVID-19 on New York State, we felt it was necessary and important to host a community call for BIPOC librarians, archivists, educators, and library and cultural workers living/working in New York City and the surrounding areas. The purpose of this call is to provide a compassionate space, free of judgment, where we can share our thoughts, feelings, and insights on the current situation and provide mutual support. Anyone is welcome although we ask that you join the call with a spirit of empathy and respect for one another. For more information please refer to the METRO code of conduct.
The Community Call will be facilitated by Traci Mark (Studio Manager of METRO) and Zakiya Coller (Digital Archivist at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture) and will take place on Wednesday, May 6th from 2-3 PM.
Libraries and the Employment Crisis
Tuesday, May 12, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
One in six Americans are now out of work. That staggering statistic will certainly impact library operations, from staff reductions to the sheer number of patrons who will need our services. Please join us for an online discussion with NYPL’s Marzena Ermler, BPL and ULU’s Djaz Zulida, and Renaissance Solutions’s Steven Davis. We’ll discuss steps to take now in order to prepare for a job search, as what to do should employment at your current position come to an end. We will share advice to impart to patrons who, once we reopen, will inevitably seek our assistance with employment concerns of their own.
How Libraries Are Updating their Complete Count Efforts During a Pandemic
Monday, May 18, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Libraries have been hard at work for months preparing for the U.S. Census. We learned how to keep patron data safe when completing the census at our libraries, became intimately familiar with the ways in which census data affects funding throughout the states, and trained staff on how to best accomplish a complete count. Just when we thought we’d cleared so many hurdles, library facilities closed in an effort to stop the propagation of a life-threatening virus. Panelists Jeff Behler (U.S. Census Bureau), Jay Brandon (New York Public Library), Dana Hysell-Alongi (Westchester Library System), Amy Mikel (Brooklyn Public Library), and Nayelli Valencia Turrent (Queens Public Library) will share their updated approaches for working toward a complete count when everyone is staying safe from Covid-19 at home.
Accessibility and Social Media
Tuesday, May 19, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
As we all work remotely, social media has become an even more important part of libraries’ outreach strategies. In this session we will discuss best practices to make your library’s social media content accessible and inclusive of people with disabilities. In addition to best practices to that apply to all social media platforms, the session will also include specific discussions of several social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram and advice about how to evaluate new social media platforms for accessibility. Carli Spina is an Associate Professor and the Head of Research & Instructional Services at the FIT Library. She regularly publishes, presents, and teaches on topics related to accessibility, Universal Design, and inclusivity in libraries.
Sharing Memories: Oral History Projects During COVID-19
Wednesday, May 20, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
With facets of our everyday life constantly shifting, it is critical to document our feelings, thoughts, and experiences as we navigate through this pandemic. Despite the challenging times we’re facing, institutions and community organizations continue to collect recordings even when we can’t be in close proximity with one another. We admire their efforts and hope to learn from them. Please join us for a webinar on May 19th at 4:00pm for presentations about the creation and maintenance of oral history projects during COVID-19. Panelists include Kimberly Springer (Curator of Oral Histories at Columbia University) and Meral Agish (Community Coordinator for the Queens Memory Project).
This session will be moderated by Traci Mark (METRO Library Council). Read our summary of this event.
Scope Creep: Privacy During Lockdown
Tuesday, May 26, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
As society moved into lockdown, everyone who could do so collectively turned to online platforms like Zoom for our social sustenance. We flocked to Libby and OverDrive for access to ebooks and audiobooks. And, of course, we spent our shopping money on Amazon. How has the safety and protection of our data privacy changed in this new environment?Join us on Tuesday, May 26 to discuss the changes in privacy that have accompanied a massive shift to the internet for nearly every aspect of our lives. Erin Berman, Bill Marden, Gary Price will talk about the challenges to privacy that come with “the new normal” and how digital providers–both large and small–have come under increased scrutiny as libraries and their patrons are impacted by the closure of physical facilities while increasing the use of online services.
How To Be A Good Ally
Monday, June 8, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Racism and oppression won’t come to an end until we all engage in the process of educating ourselves and taking action. This webinar seeks to open a discussion on de-centering our own whiteness as we work toward a just and equitable city, state, and country. Join panelists Jessie Daniels, Jessica Hochman, Maura Smale, and Polly Thistlethwaite as we discuss how white supremacy pervades our systems, how to do anti-racist work in all areas of our lives, and what it means to join in the fight — both online and in person — in ways that amplify the voices that must be heard.
Gathering Online: Tips for Planning and Managing Remote Engagement
Tuesday, June 9, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
This workshop will help you focus your goals and plan with purpose. Whether you plan to host meetings, lead discussions, or teach small classes, you will create an online space where everyone can participate, learn, and engage. Jessica Hochman, PhD, has 20 years of experience working in education as a teacher, professor, researcher, and consultant. She has taught workshops and courses, and facilitated professional development for parents, teachers, librarians, and kids. Dr. Hochman holds a BA from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and a PhD from Columbia University Teachers College.
Gathering Online: Delivering one-shot instruction sessions
Tuesday, June 16, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
This workshop will help instructors translate one-shot instruction into an online space. It includes the basics of planning a lesson, capturing and keeping your students’ attention, and leveraging technology for student engagement. Participants will have the opportunity to workshop their ideas, including their learning outcomes, activities, and strategies for managing a group online in an equitable, participatory, and dynamic way. Jessica Hochman, PhD, has 20 years of experience working in education as a teacher, professor, researcher, and consultant. She has taught workshops and courses, and facilitated professional development for parents, teachers, librarians, and kids. Dr. Hochman holds a BA from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and a PhD from Columbia University Teachers College.
What’s That Rack? Preserving Indie Video Art: A METRO/XFR Collective Love Story
Wednesday, June 17, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Back in 2016, METRO and XFR Collective created an audio/video digitization rack for community use. Join us to learn more about our partnership model with XFR Collective. We’ll talk about XFR Collective’s origin story, digitization partnerships, and community education initiatives. We’ll also screen excerpts of a digitized tape from the Monday-Wednesday-Friday Video Club collection, a 1980s downtown New York underground video art distribution org. XFR (pronounced “transfer”) Collective partners with artists, activists, and community organizations to lower the barriers to preserving at-risk audiovisual media – especially unseen, unheard, or marginalized works – through digitization, screenings, educational workshops, and pop-up events. Operating through a non-hierarchical model, we work to create an inclusive environment in which to explore practical methods for media preservation, archiving, and access.
Data Privacy 101
Thursday, June 18, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
Join us for an easy guide to protecting your online privacy. This webinar will cover: – a list of privacy concepts and terms that every librarian should know – a review of open tools to increase transparency and to reduce your digital footprint when using various web browsers and technology systems – a demonstrate how websites collect, use, and share user information – the use of social media and ways that using social media can impact the privacy of the library user – tools and resources to stay current on digital privacy issues This webinar will be presented by Gary Price (Library Journal’s INFOdocket) and Daniel Alaya (Secratic).
PLSN Prison Abolition Book Club #5
Thursday, June 18, 6:00pm
On Thursday, June 18th at 6:00pm, the Prison Abolition Book Club returns to discuss the Session 5 readings from the Black & Pink prison abolition class syllabus.
BIPOC Community Call and Juneteenth Celebration
Friday, June 19, 2:00pm – 3:00pm
Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen uprisings triggered by state-sanctioned violence against Black people including George Floyd, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, and many others, but our suffering goes back further than the present moment. We are living through a time in which BIPOC are more likely to be victims of police violence, more likely to die from Covid-19 and more likely to hold essential jobs that endanger their health and the health of their loved ones. These stressors impact our lives and our work. Despite this harsh reality, it’s important that we take moments to hold space and be in community with one another as we’ve seen in moments of joy during protests. Join us in a BIPOC Community Call in celebration of Juneteenth as we discuss how we’re experiencing both joy and frustration in our work and everyday lives. We kindly ask allies and comrades who identify as non-BIPOC to sit this one out. The call will take place on June 19th from 2-3PM and will be facilitated by Traci Mark (METRO) and Zakiya Collier (Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture).
How to Become an E-book Sleuth
Tuesday, June 23, 12:00pm – 1:00pm
In March, due to the inaccessibility of library spaces and print books, the Mina Rees Library at CUNY’s Graduate Center launched its first-ever E-book Detective Agency. Through a coordinated effort, the program helps faculty, staff, and students to locate e-books available to them — both freely accessible copies (from repositories, publisher websites, the open web, etc.) and copies that are available but sometimes not so discoverable through our subscription resources. As of June 1st, the team has searched for over 450 titles, with widespread positive feedback from patrons. Join us to learn about this program as a potential extension of your library services. Kate Angell, Elvis Bakaitis, Jill Cirasella, and Adriana Palmer will demonstrate their search process and share the guides they’ve created.
View a recording of this event
Friday, June 26, 4:00pm – 5:30pm
Queer library workers and LIS students are invited to come informally network with us on June 5 @ 4 p.m. We’ll start out with a quick introduction and a few rules and break into smaller groups to do ice breakers, hang out, and make connections with library folks across the gender/orientation spectrum. Pride Month might not look like we remember, but we can still be here, queer, and proud of our careers. This event is open to library workers, students, and aspiring library workers/students who are trans, bisexual, lesbian, gay, queer, ace, pan, nonbinary, two-spirit, or who are otherwise not straight and/or cisgender. We respectfully ask allies to sit this one out. More networking events are coming!
Big Disruptions Can Lead to Big Opportunities
Thursday, July 2, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
The latest pandemic has stalled regular public library operations. How can we take advantage of this time to consider real change in operations and services that will benefit our communities? What might change for the good? This webinar will address a variety of areas of services, functions, staffing considerations, community role, and building design. Participants will have an opportunity to contribute some of their own thoughts and observations. Maxine Bleiweis has been at the forefront of change her entire public library career. She is known for questioning the status quo on behalf of the public and eliminating barriers to service. She created the first big makerspace in Westport, CT, to accommodate different learning styles. Her book, Helping Business, was the first how-to manual for librarians on serving the business community. Bleiweis received the 2015 PLA Charles Robinson Award for Innovative Leadership. She is now consulting and speaking nationally and internationally.
Universal Design for Learning At Your Library
Wednesday, July 8, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Universal Design for Learning is an educational framework that builds on the concept of Universal Design to ensure that learning spaces and materials are accessible and inclusive for all learners. It’s principles can be applied in all sorts of library settings from children’s programming at public libraries to the design of learning spaces and materials at institutions of higher education. While UDL has a lot to offer in any instructional setting, it can be particularly useful as a means of focusing on accessibility and inclusion when planning remote and online educational programming whether this is a one-shot instruction session, a full semester class, or another type of program with educational goals. In this session, you will learn the principles of Universal Design for Learning and how these can be applied in various library settings. Carli Spina is an Associate Professor and the Head of Research & Instructional Services at the FIT Library. She regularly publishes, presents, and teaches on topics related to accessibility, Universal Design, and inclusivity in libraries.
Neurodiversity in the Workplace
Monday, July 13, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Creating a sustaining diverse workplace brings numerous benefits. When teams value and give voice to different perspectives and support multiple modalities of thinking and interacting, they derive strength in their collective knowledge and participate in more effective decision-making and innovation. In this online panel discussion, panelists Stephanie (Cole) Adams, Lauren Comito, Halley Eacker, Tim Furgal will share their lived experiences, offer guidance for staying on task when everything is urgent and important, give advice on providing environmental support for neurodiverse colleagues, and discuss the ways in which neurodiversity comes into play when working in public service settings. This webinar is being presented in partnership with Urban Libraries Unite.
From Downturn to Downturn: Applying 2010 Lessons in 2020
Tuesday, July 21, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
Today, many library colleagues are entering a downturn for the first time, or are now in a different circumstance than the 2007 financial crisis. In this talk, Tony Zanders will share key lessons and heuristics for preparing for unexpected career shifts, how to reverse engineer the skill sets you want in order to build on skill sets you already have, how to network effectively from scratch, and more. Tony Zanders is an award-winning software entrepreneur and library technology executive. He is the creator of Skilltype – a professional development platform for the library and information science community. Zanders is also the inaugural entrepreneur in residence at the Boston University Libraries, where he provides executive counsel to the University Librarian during the academic strategic planning process while designing new approaches to recruitment, retention, and training.
Data Privacy + Big Tech: How Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google Deal With Data (And What It Means for You)
Tuesday, July 28, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
In this 60 minute online session, Daniel Alaya, Davis Erin Anderson, and Gary Price will review how our world’s largest tech companies view privacy. We’ll discuss the steps these businesses take to collect your data, share the personal impacts of data collection policies, and give you tips for what you can do to bring back a modicum of control over how your data gets shared. Topics will cover the reasons why we should care about how FAANG, as they’re known, treats our data; the freedoms we may be giving up in order to use these products; and what our data reveals about us.
Media Care 101: Digital Preservation that Supports Activists
Thursday, July 30, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Creating a learning environment that empowers our patrons, community, and colleagues is imperative. Even though there is a larger system at play, we can still implement change in our daily practices as cultural workers, and as a collective. This webinar is meant for cultural workers, activists, and anyone interested in exploring practical tips surrounding digital preservation of media through a social justice lens. Join us on July 30th from 4-5PM for a presentation by Samantha Levin (Curator of Digital and Audiovisual Assets at FIT Library’s unit of Special Collections and College Archives) and Chris Nichols (Media Archivist at New York Municipal Archives). Yvonne Ng will also speak about the groundbreaking work being done at WITNESS. This presentation will be followed by a short Q&A. This webinar is a collaboration between XFR Collective and METRO.
Racism, Capitalism, and Libraries
August 10 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Join April Hathcock, Dave Ghamandi, and Emily Drabinski for a discussion on the connections between racism and capitalism. We’ll discuss the extent to which these concepts are intertwined and, indeed, inextricable. We’ll identify modes of rising up against both these concepts, and detail why we need to dismantle our economic system in order to repair the injustices that are visited upon individuals based on their race, class, and/or gender. And, as always, we’ll look to the library as a locus for working through these issues.
Privacy Audits at The Library
Tuesday, August 11, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Looking to understand how your library is protecting the privacy of your patrons? Wondering how you might identify areas for improvement in safeguarding sensitive information? oin a webinar with Bill Marden (New York Public Library) and Erin Berman (Alameda Country Library) to hear how your library can audit its online and offline records, resources, databases, and more.
Crafting a Great Resume
August 25, 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
A great resume is a crucial component for securing job interviews. In this workshop, you will learn how to make your resume stand out to potential employers by effectively communicating about your work accomplishments. The presenter will also give some general guidelines about resume length and formatting.
METRO’s Anti-racism Book Club – Meeting No. 2
Wednesday, August 26, 4:00pm – 5:30pm
We will be reading and discussing How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi. In addition, we will talk about what we can do to bring our learning off the page and into real life. This book club meeting will focus on guided discussion questions and will take place in breakout rooms so that everyone has a chance to share. All are welcome, regardless of participation in our first meeting.
Tuesday, September 1, 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Need some help crafting a truly excellent, eye-catching resume? Book a 20 minute appointment with one of our two experts, Djaz Frederick Zulida and Kae Bara Kratcha. Register here [link forthcoming] and we’ll be in touch to schedule a 20-minute time slot. Please be prepared to share your resume with us on or by Thursday, August 27 so that our hosts have time to review.
A few requests for participating in this event:
> Appointments are exclusively available to folks working in (or looking for work in) the library and archives fields
> Preference will be granted to METRO members
> Please be prepared to be available anytime between 6:30pm and 8:30pm on Tuesday, September 1st. We will work with you via email to book a specific time within that window
> Appointments are first come, first served
> We’ll take your preference for a coach into account but may not be able to grant all requests
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Recent Graduates Community Chat
Wednesday, September 2, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
If you’ve graduated from library school/iSchool in the past year or two, join us for a community call on Wednesday, September 2 at 4:00pm. Graduating into a combo pandemic/recession and taking our first steps as professionals is… quite a mix. Let’s take some time to debrief and discuss what we’ve learned working in the field, share our journeys toward (hopefully) finding employment, and reveal our coping strategies.
This community call will feature breakout sessions; please come prepared to talk. Our chat will be moderated by Mary Bakija, Georgia Westbook, and Davis Erin Anderson.