Information Is Our Game: Meet Holly Mercer

Posted on


    BIG IDEAS demand reliable information. The University Libraries supports scholarship, research, and learning at UT by acquiring, organizing, preserving, and facilitating access to the world’s knowledge. The wide-ranging expertise of our librarians might surprise you.

    This semester we begin a series of profiles of UT Knoxville librarians. Watch for a new profile each week.

As Associate Dean for Scholarly Communication and Research Services, Holly Mercer directs the Libraries’ services to scholars. She oversees digital initiatives; research and grants; data curation; digital publishing and production; digital humanities; and the Libraries’ department of learning, research, and engagement.

Digital technologies have transformed academic libraries. New modes of inquiry and dissemination of scholarship engage librarians in the research process from creation to preservation. Under Holly’s leadership, librarians help researchers take advantage of emerging technologies to model, publish, and preserve their research.

Holly’s division offers support for open access publishing and helps scholars meet the data management requirements of granting agencies. Her group manages Trace, UT’s showcase and archive of creative and scholarly work, as well as a digital imprint, Newfound Press, that publishes peer-reviewed books and multimedia works.

Over the past year, Holly spearheaded UT’s membership in the Library Publishing Coalition and HathiTrust. The Library Publishing Coalition addresses changes in scholarly publishing that impact academic libraries. HathiTrust is a partnership of major academic and research libraries collaborating in a digital library initiative to preserve and provide access to the published record in digital form. Joining HathiTrust immediately secured online access for UT users to more than 3.4 million volumes in the public domain.

Holly holds a master’s in library and information science from the University of South Carolina and a bachelor’s degree in classical studies from Duke University. She currently serves on committees of several projects of national and international scope, including DataONE and the Library Publishing Coalition.

EndNote classes, March 4 & 13: manage your references

Posted on

Want to get control of your citations? Consider attending a hands-on class to learn how to use EndNote, a citation management tool. The following EndNote classes are open to UT students, faculty, and staff.

Collaborating with EndNote and EndNote Online
Tuesday, March 4

2:00-3:00 p.m.
211 Hodges Library
Register by sending a message to
Learn how to use EndNote collaboratively. Share references and combine manuscript drafts, using either EndNote desktop ro EndNote Online. Presumes basic familiarity with EndNote desktop version.

Introduction to Endnote
Thursday, March 13

3:30-5:00 p.m.
211 Hodges Library
Register by sending a message to
Discover how you can capture and organize citations from database searches, attach full-text PDFs, and insert citations formatted in the style of your choice into Microsoft Word documents.

Some instruction is helpful to master EndNote basic features. More help is available in our library research guide ( and through webinars (

EndNote is free to students, faculty, and staff.* Download EndNote at

To arrange class instruction for a group of seven or more people, email

*EndNote is provided by a license from the Office of Information Technology to UT Knoxville, UT Memphis, and UT Space Institute.

Libraries will host STEM symposium for high school students, March 29

Posted on

The University of Tennessee Libraries is hosting the second annual Big Orange STEM Symposium (B.O.S.S.): High School Outreach, Saturday, March 29, 2014, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the John C. Hodges Library on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus.

The symposium is aimed at high school students who are interested in careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. High school students at all levels are invited to participate.

The symposium brings together STEM-related departments and centers from across the UT Knoxville campus and the Knoxville community to provide high school students with a learning experience that includes guidance in career exploration and planning from a UT Career Services counselor. The symposium will allow students to explore STEM fields in a holistic way, giving them a taste of various disciplines so they will be more informed and better prepared to decide which area they would like to study.

Two panel discussions — one featuring current undergraduate students and another with STEM professors — will offer insights into the university experience and how to succeed in STEM studies. Students also will have the opportunity to meet researchers working in STEM fields. In breakout sessions, they will learn about strategies and techniques for doing undergraduate research through exposure to the scientific process, resources, and technologies. At a STEM Fair, they can learn about STEM organizations in our region and unique opportunities at UT Knoxville.

Representatives from the Knoxville community include Oak Ridge National Laboratories, Texas Instruments, Biology in a Box, and Dade Moeller. The UT departments of math, soil science, geography, chemistry, and medicine also will participate.

For more information about the symposium and registration, please visit the website at Free lunch and goody bags will be provided for attendees who register before March 21, 2014. On-site registration will be available.

Everybody’s a winner in our READ contest!

Posted on

Sydney McNeill

Sydney McNeill

On Wednesday, the Libraries announced the winner of our READ poster contest. Sydney McNeill received the most “likes” on Facebook, so she will be featured on the next poster in our series of campus “celebrities” reading from a favorite book.

But what about the other 100+ students who turned out to pose for our photographer? There was such an outpouring of Volunteer spirit . . . we couldn’t let all that enthusiasm go to waste!

So, guess what? We’ve decided to print a second poster — a collage of all the runners-up. We loved all your photos, from the serious to the silly. Now, everybody will be a star!

Thanks for making our READ poster contest a stunning success.

Both posters will be in print soon. We’ll let you know when the free posters are available.

Click to enlarge.

“Sharecropper’s Son” John O. Hodges to Read at UT Library

Posted on

Hodges_Delta_smallJohn O. Hodges will read at UT’s Writers in the Library Monday, February 10th at 7 pm in the John C. Hodge’s Library Auditorium. The reading is free and open to the public.

John O. Hodges is a former UT faculty member in the Department of Religious Studies, and he served as chair of African and African-American Studies from 1997 to 2002. In his time at UT, Hodges has been recognized as an outstanding teacher by the UT National Alumni Association and has won several other awards, including the Lorayne Lester Award for distinguished service to the university. Hodge’s new book, Delta Fragments: The Recollections of a Sharecropper’s Son, details his experiences as a youth growing up in the Mississippi Delta during the 1950s and 1960s and places these moments in the context of larger themes, such as the civil rights movement and religion in the African-American community. Hodges has also published articles in such journals as The CLA Journal, The Langston Hughes Review, Soundings, and The Southern Quarterly.

Hodges was born in the Mississippi Delta town of Greenwood, where he attended segregated schools and graduated as valedictorian from Broad Street High School in 1963. He won a full-tuition scholarship to attend Morehouse College, where he was an honor student and was selected as a Merrill Scholar to travel and study in Europe. As a student in Nantes, France, Hodges acted in plays and gained fluency in French. He received a Master’s degree in English from Atlanta University and a Master’s and PhD in religion and literature from the University of Chicago Divinity School.

Before accepting his position at UT, Hodges taught in the English Department at Barat College, where he also served as Chair of African American Studies. Hodges has traveled throughout Europe and West Africa and has lectured on African American religion in China. He now lives in Knoxville with his wife Carolyn, who is Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School at UT.
Writers in the Library is sponsored by the University of Tennessee Libraries and the UT Creative Writing Program in association with the John C. Hodges Better English Fund. For further information contact Marilyn Kallet, Director, UT Creative Writing Program (, or Christopher Hebert, Writer-in-Residence, UT Libraries (

Follow us at:

And the winner is . . .

Posted on

Congratulations to Sydney McNeill, who will be featured on the Libraries’ next poster.Sydney McNeill

Of more than a hundred students who posed for our photographer, Sydney McNeill got the most “likes” on Facebook. Now she joins that elite group — including Smokey, Smokey Jr., and the Volunteer — who have starred in our “READ” poster series featuring campus celebrities reading from a favorite book.

It’s too late to vote, but you can still see the gallery of contestants on our Facebook page. Thanks to all the students who dropped by the library to demonstrate their love of reading. What a great turnout!

The new poster will be in print soon. We’ll let you know when the free posters are available.

Congratulations, Sydney!

Weather Conditions and Library Services

Posted on

At this time the university remains open and classes are scheduled for tomorrow. The Libraries will continue to monitor university communication channels (email, text, tv, radio, the webpage) for the latest information and encourage all of you to do the same. Travel conditions are challenging and will remain so through at least tomorrow morning.

Our goal is to ensure both the safety of Libraries’ staff and the integrity of our services.

Hodges remains open with possibly reduced staffing through the night and tomorrow morning. Beyond keeping Hodges open, we will provide the services that we have the staff to support. At the moment we are planning for only minimal staffing in Hodges into the morning, gradually opening various services as we have the staff to do so. Managers at the Ag and Music libraries will make the decisions they feel appropriate given conditions and staffing.

Please continue to monitor conditions and please regularly check university communication outlets for further information. If anything changes we will let you know as soon as we can.

Your artwork or photo mash-up can win cash

Posted on

KoczoThe UT Libraries is holding two contests that offer cash awards.

The STUDENT ART IN THE LIBRARY juried exhibition seeks drawings, graphic design, prints, photography, paintings — any two-dimensional work — for display. Selected works will be on display in 135 Hodges Library throughout the spring semester. The top three works get cash prizes ($300, $150, $75). Submit your art at by Feb. 17.

PicSpinWin_CJ_smallAre you a creative spirit but not really an artist? Our PIC SPIN WIN contest lets you “repurpose” archival photos from the Libraries’ Special Collections — through collage, mash-up, or reproduction — to create an art piece that reflects the contest’s theme of “school spirit.” Winning works win cash prizes ($100, $75, $25) and will be showcased on digital screens at the libraries and the University Center. Submit your works at by April 9.

Both contests are open to currently enrolled students (undergrads and grads).

Jamie Quatro to read at UT library, Jan. 27

Posted on

Jamie Quatro. Photo by Kristen Brock.

Jamie Quatro will read at UT’s Writers in the Library, Monday, January 27th at 7 p.m. in the John C. Hodges Library auditorium. The reading is free and open to the public.

In March 2013, Quatro’s debut story collection, I Want To Show You More (Grove Press), was released to critical acclaim: Dwight Garner of the New York Times calls it, “Subtle, sexy, and reflective.” The collection is a 2013 New York Times Notable Book, NPR Best Book of 2013, Indie Next pick, and New York Times Editors’ Choice. It was named a Top 10 Book of 2013 by Dwight Garner in the New York Times, and a Favorite Book of 2013 by James Wood in The New Yorker. The collection is currently a finalist for the Georgia Townsend Fiction Prize and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize.

Quatro’s work has appeared in Tin House, Ploughshares, The Kenyon Review, McSweeney’s, AGNI, The New York Times, The New York Times Book Review, and elsewhere. A finalist for the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction, she is the recipient of fellowships from Yaddo and the MacDowell Colony, as well as 2013 fellowships from both the Bread Loaf and the Sewanee Writers’ Conferences. Her stories are anthologized in the O. Henry Prize Stories 2013, Forty Stories: New Writing from Harper Perennial, and in the forthcoming 9th edition of The Story and Its Writer (ed. Ann Charters).

Quatro holds graduate degrees from the College of William & Mary and the Bennington College Writing Seminars, and is a Contributing Editor at Oxford American magazine. She lives with her family in Lookout Mountain, Georgia.
Writers in the Library is sponsored by the University of Tennessee Libraries and the UT Creative Writing Program in association with the John C. Hodges Better English Fund. For further information contact Marilyn Kallet, Director, UT Creative Writing Program (, or Christopher Hebert, Writer-in-Residence, UT Libraries (

Follow us at:

Who will star in the library’s poster? Get out the vote!

Posted on

YourFaceHere_smallWho will star in the library’s poster? It’s up to you. Visit our Facebook page ( and register your vote. The student with the most “likes” will star in the UT Libraries’ next “READ” poster.

Voting begins Tuesday, Jan. 21, and continues until midnight, Tuesday, Jan. 28. Watch our Facebook page for an announcement on Wednesday, Jan. 29.

blacklillies2More than a hundred students dropped by the Hodges, Music, and Agriculture & Veterinary Medicine libraries this week to pose for our photographer. (Were you one of them? Vote for yourself. Enlist your friends. Tell your momma.)

Copies of the new poster will be available, for free, in about a month. Want to see our latest awesome poster? Pick up a Black Lillies poster, now, at the main entrance of Hodges Library, the Music Library, or AgVetMed.