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Big changes coming soon to Chemeketa library


When students and staff return to campus in January, a new system will be in place to make searching Chemeketa’s library more convenient than ever.

The new system will consolidate all of Chemeketa’s library offerings, as well as the offerings of 36 other academic libraries across the Pacific Northwest, into a single, easy-to-use search tool.

Michele Burke, a reference and instruction librarian at Chemeketa, is leading the effort to raise awareness ahead of the switch.

Burke said that this change would drastically increase the types of content that library users would be able to find.

You’ll find “a bazillion items in one search,” she said. “You’ll find books and DVDs as you did before, but now you’ll also find articles from magazines, journals, newspapers, streaming videos, and electronic images.”

While the new system may bring welcome benefits, Chemeketa is making the switch for a different reason.

In 2008, Chemeketa became a member of the Orbis Cascade Alliance, a consortium of 37 academic libraries across Oregon, Washington, and Idaho.

“As a consortium, we share services, technologies, and collections,” Burke said. “All of the Orbis Cascade Alliance libraries are changing to a new, shared Integrated Library System.

“Instead of having multiple systems trying to communicate, we’ll have one shared system that lets us work closely with our academic partner libraries.”

Theresa Yancey, another reference and instruction librarian at Chemeketa, said she was looking forward to the switch.

“The system we have now has worked, but it’s an aging system,” she said. “One of the main differences between what we have now and the new one is that the new one is a one-stop interface. That’s a big improvement.

“In the past, we’ve had to send library users to different systems for different needs. This new one consolidates them.”

Chemeketa’s librarians are excited about the change.

“I’m looking forward to it, and I’m looking forward to learning something new myself so I can teach it to others,” Yancey said. “But there’s always a little nervousness that comes with migrating to a new system.”

The new system isn’t the only change coming to the Chemeketa library at the start of Winter term.

“The good news is that Chemeketa’s Salem and Yamhill campus libraries will still be drop-off and pick-up locations for Chemeketa Cooperative Regional Library Service public library materials,” Burke said.

“However, to borrow materials from the CCRLS public libraries, a public library card is required. Your student or employee ID will still be your college library card, but it will not work for the public libraries.”

Burke said she wanted library users to know that the library staff was ready to teach the new system.

“We’re offering drop-in sessions the first two weeks of term,” she said.

Drop-in sessions in the library will run from 8:30 to 9 a.m. and from noon to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday, Jan. 5 through 16, in Bldg. 9-240. “You can meet us at the Reference Desk,” Burke said. “Come try out the new search with us.”

For more information about the switch, visit

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