Late Night at the Library: Exam Hours

The library will be open until 2 a.m. starting on May 5, through May 11. On Reading Day we will be open 24 hours.

Hungry? Free coffee and tasty snacks will be available in the evening hours.

Stressed? Check out our games, bubbles and other stress-busters.

Need some quiet? On Reading Day, the third floor of the library becomes a quiet zone for those wishing to study in peace; groups are encouraged to use a study room or other space on the second and first floors.

Need some help? Our reference librarians are standing by to help you solve that knotty problem. You’ll find us at the desk, by email:, by IM: askwyndham or by phone: 540-362-7465. Good luck with your exams!!!

-The Library would like to thank Student Services for sponsoring the exam snacks.

Congratulations to the Research Award winners

Congratulations to the winners of the 2013 Wyndham Robertson Library Undergraduate Research Award:


Catherine Hensly, Proceed to Olympus: The Iconography of the Return of Hephaestus – nominated by Professor Tina Salowey.


Kelsey DeForest, Playing Politics with Rape: Republican apologia in the 2012 Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization – nominated by Professor Jon Bohland.

The award was established in 2011 by the library for the recognition of exemplary undergraduate student research projects completed in Hollins courses. Two $250 prizes are awarded, and winners and finalist papers are added to the library’s Hollins archives.

Announcing the Research Award finalists! and an invitation to the awards reception April 3

The committee for the 2013 Wyndham Robertson Library Undergraduate Research Awards congratulate this year’s finalists:


Leah Craig, Madame Tussaud and the Women of the French Revolution – nominated by professor Rachel Nuñez.

Catherine Hensley, Proceed to Olympus: The Iconography of the Return of Hephaestus – nominated by Professor Tina Salowey.



Kelsey DeForest, Playing Politics with Rape: Republican apologia in the 2012 Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization – nominated by Professor Jon Bohland.

Rebecca Rowe,  The Beginning of the End: A Look at the Causes of the Schism in the Methodist Episcopal Church. – nominated by Professor Ruth Doan.



Please join us for a reception to celebrate the finalists and announce the winners of this year’s research award!

Wednesday, April 3, 5:30 p.m.

Wyndham Robertson Library, Hollins Room

Refreshments will be served.


Donation provides beauty from a far-off land

A donation to the library from the McDonald family has turned the 3rd floor loft into a place where armchair travelers can imagine themselves transported to faraway places such as Morocco, Turkmenistan, or the mountains of Iran. Doug McDonald, father of Anne Marie (’16), donated several rugs and woven pieces from a collection built by his father, the late Gilman McDonald. The woven hangings are decorative, made to adorn horses or other pack animals. The largest of these would have been worn by a camel used in a wedding procession.

Several of the items hail from Transcaucasia, the area where Asia meets Europe; others were woven by tribes whose territories range from Turkmenistan into Iran.
McDonald describes their origins: “The weavers of these items were women, who wove to satisfy the immediate needs of their families, and in the case of the pile weavings seen here, for sale in local and international markets, which brought their wares in great numbers to Europe and America in the late 19th and 20th centuries. They passed down their technical knowledge of spinning and weaving, as well as the designs they carried in their heads as a kind of literacy, from one generation to the next.
The multitude of small rugs, bags, bands, covers, and trappings they wove and imbued with beautiful colors and designs have long captivated collectors, connoisseurs, and the general public alike. That Gilman McDonald’s collecting efforts and love of this art form will be shared with patrons of the Hollins University library would have caused him much joy. “

Meet Hazel Foster, Reference Assistant

Hazel Foster is the library’s newest reference assistant, answering your questions on evenings and weekends. She is also a Hollins MFA student. This is our Q & A with Hazel:

Q: What is your academic background?
A: I have a BA in Writing with concentrations in Fiction and Poetry and a minor in English Literature from Grand Valley State University. Currently, I am working on my MFA in Creative Writing here at Hollins. My intended thesis is a collection of short stories.

Q: What did you do before joining our library?
A: For nearly five years, I worked in a public library system back in Michigan. What a different world! I also spent a lot of time enjoying the benefits of living near Lake Michigan– swimming, soaking up sunshine, reading on the beach.

Q: What do you like to read?
A: I will read almost anything, from George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Fire and Ice series to Annie Proulx to Watchmen to Diary of a Wimpy Kid. Anything. Really.

Q: What else would you like to share about yourself: hobbies, fun facts, life goals?
A: I love sitcoms, particularly The Golden Girls, Will & Grace, Roseanne, and How I Met Your Mother. Eventually, I hope to write a book of creative non-fiction essays about this love affair.

Meet James Miller, Science/Math and IT Librarian

We are happy to introduce you to James Miller, the library’s newest librarian! James works with students and faculty in the natural sciences and mathematics, helping them with research and resource needs. He is also the library’s IT specialist. We asked him some questions:

Q: What is your academic background?
A: I received a B.A. in English from Austin College, a small liberal arts college about the same size as Hollins. My MLIS is from Drexel University.

Q: What did you do before joining our library?
A: I was an assistant librarian at South Georgia Technical College in Americus, Georgia. My position entailed collection development, instruction, web site maintenance, and essentially everything else. It was a great learning experience.

Q: What do you like to read?
A: I still love literature (Cormac McCarthy, Don Delillo, Jorge Luis Borges), but I’m trying to be more well-rounded and read more non-fiction. Most of my non-fiction interests center around health, nutrition, and sustainable food. I try to learn about science (climate, chemistry, etc.) indirectly by reading about how food is grown/produced.

Q: What else would you like to share about yourself: hobbies, fun facts, life goals?
A: I’m a Dad now so hobbies are scarce and must be childfriendly. I like to garden and play guitar. I used to be an obsessive tennis player. Anyone play here at Hollins? Fun Facts: I skateboarded for 10 years and won an amateur contest in Mainz, Germany. My first job at age 17 was as a locksmith and entailed jimmying open cars and apartment complexes, but don’t call me now for those services. I’ve never seen the film “Titanic.”

Staff/Faculty/Alum Book Club Discussion of “Wild Girls” March 19

The library’s book club for staff, faculty and alums will next be meeting on Tuesday March 19, to discuss Hollins alumna Mary Stewart Atwell’s “Wild Girls.”  We will meet at noon in the Hollins Room, with drinks and dessert provided by the library. Bring a brown bag lunch, bring a colleague, and join us: we look forward to seeing you here!

Getting the book: we have a copy, additional copies are available from the public libraries:, and Amazon will sell you the hardcover for $16.50. E-versions are also available for purchase.

For more information contact Maryke Barber at 540-362-6328 or

Sign up for a public library card at the bookmobile March 13

The bookmobile will be at Moody on Wednesday, March 13, with new books and movies, and the opportunity to sign up for a card from the Roanoke Valley Public Libraries!

RVL libraries offer popular books and films, as well as downloadable e-books and databases such as the Mango language learning system. A public library card is free with your Hollins ID: come check it out!

Sari Soldiers Documentary March 3

Next At the Library Documentary Film Series presents:

Sari Soldiers

a film by Julie Bridgham

March 3, 2:00 p.m. in Jackson Screening Room

with an introduction and Q&A by Hollins’ Nepali students.

Filmed over three years during the most historic and pivotal time in Nepal’s modern history, The Sari Soldiers is an extraordinary story of six women’s courageous efforts to shape Nepal’s future in the midst of an escalating civil war against Maoist insurgents, and the King’s crackdown on civil liberties. When Devi, mother of a 15-year-old girl, witnesses her niece being tortured and murdered by the Royal Nepal Army, she speaks publicly about the atrocity. The army abducts her daughter in retaliation, and Devi embarks on a three-year struggle to uncover her daughter’s fate and see justice done.

The Sari Soldiers follows her and five other brave women, including Maoist Commander Kranti; Royal Nepal Army Officer Rajani; Krishna, a monarchist from a rural community who leads a rebellion against the Maoists; Mandira, a human rights lawyer; and Ram Kumari, a young student activist shaping the protests to reclaim democracy. The Sari Soldiers intimately delves into the extraordinary journey of these women on opposing sides of the conflict, through the democratic revolution that reshapes the country’s future.

“[I]t gives new meaning to the words courage and resilience.” – Stephen Holden, New York Times

“A moving portrait of women during war and their struggles as mothers, daughters, and sisters.” Marie Lo, The Asian Reporter

“Bridgham’s overarching portrait of political upheaval is compassionate and insightful, …the director discovers a symbol of both inspirational human rights advocacy, and the terrible tragedy of tyranny.” Nick Schager, Slant Magazine

Apply for the Research Award By Feb. 28!

Show off your hard work and win!

The library’s annual undergraduate research award recognizes exemplary student research projects completed in Hollins courses with a cash prize of $250 and online publication. Eligible research projects will showcase extensive and creative usage of the library’s resources; the ability to synthesize those resources in completing the project; and growth in the student’s research skills.

Who: All current Hollins undergraduate students are eligible. There will be two (2) awards given: one for a freshman/sophomore, and the second for a junior/senior.

When: All applications will be due on February 28, 2013. Finalists will be announced in late March 2013, and the winners will be recognized at a reception in April 2013.

How: Choose a research project (paper; podcast; website; etc.) that you completed for a Hollins course or independent study during the three previous semesters (Fall 2012; Spring 2012; Fall 2011). You will need to have a faculty member (your class instructor; if the class instructor is unavailable, an advisor would be acceptable) agree to sponsor you for the award. As part of the application, you must write a 250-500 word essay explaining your project and the research you completed.

Why should I apply?: Because this is an awesome opportunity to show off your great work, and get rewarded for all the time you spent researching! As if that wasn’t enough, each winner will also receive:

  • $250
  • publication/archiving of your work on the library’s website and in the library’s archives
  • an excellent item to put on your resume or grad school application
  • the warm fuzzy feeling of recognition by peers and faculty