Small Libraries

Members Present

  • Vance Thomas Central Baptist Theological Seminary of Kansas
  • Elli Cucksey, Trinity Lutheran Seminary at Capital University
  • Kris Veldheer, Catholic Theological Union
  • Susan Ebertz, Wartburg Theological Seminary
  • Yasmine Abou-El-Kheir, Chicago Theological Seminary
  • John Dechant, Chicago Theological Seminary
  • Debbie Bradshaw, Nazarene Theological Seminary
  • Karla Grafton, Hartford International University
  • Craig Rosenbeck, Roberts Wesleyan University
  • Robin McCall, Union Presbyterian Seminary
  • Pat Finnerty, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School
  • Stephanie Garrett, Catholic Distance University
  • David Kiger, Milligan University
  • Steve Jamieson, Covenant Theological Seminary
  • Seoyoung Kim, World Mission University
  • Winette Field, William Booth College
  • Helena Kudzia, St. Mark’s College


  1. Call to order
    1. Officer introductions
    2. Participant introductions
  2. Old business
  3. New business
    1. Conference reflections
    2. Ideas for future conference sessions
    3. Ideas for joint projects
  4. Items from the group
  5. Adjourn

Vance opened the meeting with a round of introductions, beginning with himself as chair and Elli as Vice-Chair. Our Secretary, Karen Clark, was unable to attend. Elli volunteered to keep notes.

Vance acknowledged Susan Ebertz as our fearless instigator/founder and announced her retirement at the end of this month.

Year in Review

Beginning with the agenda item for Old Business, none was brought forth.

Moving to New Business, Vance called for reflections on the conference. All who were able to attend in person agreed that there is great value in the connections made outside of sessions, as well as during. Online participants acknowledged that participating and carrying on with daily work activities is not possible. There was further discussion of the value of making new connections, particularly with newer members, at the in-person conference.


The next agenda item was to bring forth ideas for possible SLIG-led sessions for the next conference. Some ideas suggested were:

  • More information on virtual library services
  • Maintaining work/life balance, especially in libraries that have seen staff reductions
  • Information about ChatGPT or other artificial intelligence applications and how we might use these within a small library context
  • Best practices for the use and management of student workers
  • Using storytelling in library instruction
  • Panel discussion of auxiliary services in the library
  • Cataloging and classification for the inexperienced or the untrained

We then asked for ideas about possible joint projects between our libraries. Susan suggested we collaborate on the making and use of instructional videos. John brought up the use of Writing Instruction as part of Information Literacy training. A discussion of Writing Instruction Services and their place within the library followed.

Lastly, Susan asked what each of us was facing as our biggest challenge right now. Primarily we agreed that budget issues and getting administration to realize the value added by the library is everyone’s biggest challenge today. Yasmine had suggestions for thinking about how we might pool our voices to try to be heard better.