Category: Library NewsBlog

Sharpen your mind’s “Shadow Activity”


A study from Emory University demonstrates what your grade-school teachers emphasized: reading is great for your brain. Published in Brain Connectivity*, researchers found a connection between reading a novel and long-lasting, significant increases in neural connectivity – a ‘shadow activity’ of the mind, as one researcher put it.

The library has a collection of books set for this purpose and geared for your downtime: our leisure reading collection.  Need a book for the beach, vacation or for those few spare minutes during lunch? We have added a fresh look to the collection with new titles as well as a new location just inside the front door on the way to the cafe.

Take a minute to browse these shelves filled with new titles and old favorites. Use MeL for access to a more extensive collection of thousands of titles and subjects available from libraries throughout Michigan brought to you here right at our library service center. Access MeL at or browse our new leisure collection and work on enhancing your mind!

Send questions or suggestions to

*Berns Gregory S., Blaine Kristina, Prietula Michael J., and Pye Brandon E.. Brain Connectivity. December 2013, 3(6): 590-600.

Author Talk – November 2nd – And Here: 100 Years of Upper Peninsula Writing, 1917-2017

Upper Peninsula literature has traditionally been suppressed or minimized in Michigan anthologies and Michigan literature as a whole. Even the Upper Peninsula itself has been omitted from maps, creating a people and a place that have become in many ways “ungeographic.” These people and this place are strongly made up of traditionally marginalized groups such as the working class, the rural poor, and Native Americans, which adds even more insult to the exclusion and forced oppressive silence. And Here: 100 Years of Upper Peninsula Writing, 1917–2017, gives voice to Upper Peninsula writers, ensuring that they are included in Michigan’s rich literary history.

The Van Pelt and Opie Library is pleased to bring four of the contributing authors to read from this compelling anthology, followed by a question and answer session and book signing.

Come join us on November 2nd from 4:00 pm-6:00 pm in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie  Library.  Light refreshments will be provided.


Library to celebrate open education work, Bryophyte Ecology

Bryophyte Ecology is the result of more than a decade of research, collaboration and composition by Professor Emerita Janice Glime and many contributors and photographers. The work is unique not only as the most recent comprehensive reference on bryophyte ecology, but because it is “open” to the world.

Professor Glime’s goal in creating an open work was “to reach a broad audience in an affordable format with lots of illustrations and a readable style.” Bryophyte Ecology has been used as a textbook, reference source, and field guide. Initially self-published on the web, Bryophyte Ecology is now published on Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech and was the top downloaded faculty publication in Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech for the month of August.

The library will host a reception celebrating Professor Glime’s work during Open Access Week. Please join us in the East Reading Room on Thursday, October 26th between 4:00pm and 6:00pm to celebrate Bryophyte Ecology, chat with Professor Glime and learn more about open educational resources from scholarly communications librarians.

Discover the world of bryophytes at

Digital Commons – September Quick Facts

Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech, the university’s digital repository, offers worldwide access to research, scholarship, and other creative works by members of the Michigan Tech community. Digital Commons supports all file formats, which is great feature for authors who wish to deposit content other than their traditional peer-reviewed publications. For example, the repository hosts several video files created by Michigan Tech faculty using the cloud chamber facility. These videos were used in writing journal articles and you can check them out on the repository here and here!

Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech is a service of the Van Pelt and Opie Library. For more information about the repository and to learn how you can deposit your own works, contact:


Keynote to Celebrate 25 Years of Industrial Archaeology at Michigan Tech: Preserving Legendary 20th Century Sites in Detroit


Please join us for a keynote presentation by guest scholar Krysta Ryzewski at 4:00 pm on Friday, September 22 in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library on the Michigan Technological University campus. This event is part of A Celebration: 25 Years of Industrial Heritage and Archaeology, an anniversary of the founding of the Industrial Archaeology program, and is made possible through the Visiting Women and Minorities Lecture and Scholar Series at Michigan Tech. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Keynote speaker, Krysta Ryzewski.
Keynote speaker, Krysta Ryzewski.

In this presentation, Ryzewski will discuss Ethnic Layers of Detroit (ELD) and Unearthing Detroit, two interdisciplinary heritage projects in metro Detroit. ELD is an urban-focused digital humanities project engaging faculty and student researchers in creating, documenting, and sharing multimedia narratives of Detroit’s ethnic histories. Unearthing Detroit is a project that involves both academic research and public archaeology in its focus on the urban historical archaeology collections housed in the Grosscup Museum of Anthropology at Wayne State University. The project’s research and outreach team is comprised of archaeology faculty and graduate students from Wayne State’s Department of Anthropology, as well as a number of volunteers from the local community. Ryzewski’s talk will address challenges, successes, and implications of the projects that will be of interest to a diverse audience.

Krysta Ryzewski, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Wayne State University and is the Director of the Digging Detroit project, an investigation of industrial and post-industrial urban communities in the Motor City. She is a leading researcher in historical and contemporary archaeology and the digital humanities.

Ryzewski’s research visit and presentation are supported by a travel grant from the Institutional Equity and Inclusion office’s Visiting Women and Minority Series. Additional arrangements and refreshments are made possible by the Social Sciences Department and the Michigan Technological University Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections.

For more information about this program or the Industrial Archaeology program’s 25th anniversary, feel free to call the Michigan Tech Archives at 906-487-2505, email at, or call the Social Sciences department at 906-487-2113.


Digital Commons – August Quick Facts


Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech provides authors with access to personalized dashboards that have a number of useful features, including shareability! Authors can quickly generate a URL that enables sharing a custom dashboard view with anyone. It’s never been easier to give coauthors or colleagues a glimpse at where works are being accessed and how often! Check out the Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech administrator dashboard here for a look at what a dashboard looks like and how it works.


Digital Commons @ Michigan Tech is a service of the Van Pelt and Opie Library. To learn more about the repository and sharing author dashboards contact:

Medical College of Wisconsin Learns Lean from the Library

The Van Pelt and Opie Library recently hosted guests from the Medical College of Wisconsin library in Milwaukee, WI who came to learn about lean initiatives in a university setting.  Highlights of the day included an introduction to lean, a tour of the library by Library Director Ellen Marks, an opportunity to learn about specific lean library initiatives and visual management, a tour of Dining Services hosted by Kathy Wardynski and a stop at the Continuous Improvement Office to meet with the Director, Ruth Archer.