June 22, 2005
Arrogance, Ignorance & Drexel Law (Or Has the Future of Collection Development Arrived)
Guess what's going to be the number one topic of conversation in San Antonio?
Straight from the horse's mouth:
|Today, only retired partners, law firm messengers, and people needing a quiet place to think or write can be found in law libraries, as virtually all legal resources have been digitized and made accessible through electronic data library services. Today, lawyers can access the law wirelessly from their offices, or over their BlackBerries®. -- Drexel Law|
Drexel’s law library will be ... state-of-the-art. In fact, it will be three-dimensional. First, it will have a “physical core library”. This will include the resources that the American Bar Association requires all law schools to have. It will also include special depth in those areas that will be the focal points of the law school programs - health law, intellectual property, entrepreneurial business, environmental law, elder law, and the like.
Second, Drexel will offer its faculty and students wide access to the thousands of electronic books, records, and services that are now available over the Internet. Because Drexel is a wireless campus, all of these resources will be available to you wherever you are on campus; and otherwise over the Internet.
Third, Drexel will have a unique affiliation with one of the best, most extensive, and oldest law libraries in the country: the Jenkins Law Library. Founded in 1802 and maintained ever since as the law library for the legal profession in Philadelphia, it contains more than 589,000 volumes, including: comprehensive federal and state materials, statutes, regulations and reporters, court records and briefs, treatises, audio and videocassettes, centuries-old rare materials, as well as Internet resources.
Jenkins is fully staffed with professional legal librarians, who will train all law students not only in computerized legal research, but factual investigation techniques as well. The library has two dozen computers and is wireless for those having laptop computers.
Sounds like outsourcing to me. Sounds like there's no need for a collection development policy. One Law-lib comment indicated that the Jenkins Law Library is about 2 miles from Drexel. Is that convenient? Also noted on Law-Lib, this statement comes from the same university whose President was publicly quoted as saying:
"in three years (after being hired) I did not want any professor or graduate student to walk into the library to find a book, because this is a waste of your time unless you love books and are going to look at them".
Well now, IIT/Chicago-Kent, John Marshall (Chicago), Loyola, and DePaul administrators must feel like fools today. They might as well curtail library operations and enter into a "unique affliation" with the Cook County Law Library.
Now, let us turn to chapter 6 of the ABA Standards. But see, the ABA proposed revision to Standard 606 (Core Collection) and don't forget to attend H-6: What is a Core Collection Anymore (Tuesday, July 19th at 4:00 p.m.) in San Antonio next month. Feel free to email your comments to email@example.com.
According to a post on Law-Lib, Carl Oxholm III, Chair, Law School Development Committee, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Drexel University, has indicated that he had revised the library web page, removing language some librarians found offensive, but that it hadn't been uploaded because the site's web manager was ill. The revised page should be online today. Meanwhile, the Drexel-Jenkins connection remains intack. And that is the real issue.
File this under: What were they thinking
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