25 March, 2008

Yarra Plenty staff on study exchange to the USA

Imaginon, PLCMC

Yesterday morning two Yarra Plenty staff boarded a plane for the US - they are off to do a 5 week exchange at the Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County in North Carolina.

Lynette Lewis and Jane Grace were chosen to represent our library in a new program instituted last year between our 2 libraries, which will also see 2 staff from PLCMC visit Yarra Plenty in the next few months.

Jane and Lynette are also attending the Public Library Association Conference in Minneapolis on the way to Charlotte.

PLCMC is one of the most innovative and inspiring library systems in the United States. An online learning program for library staff called the 23 Things program was developed there and it is also home to the fabulous Imaginon, a children’s library and theatre complex. Yarra Plenty implemented the 23 Things program for our staff and we have built up a relationship with PLCMC over the past 18 months.

The learning opportunities will focus on any of the following areas:

• Work experience within the children’s and teen library at ImaginOn, a unique partnership of the Library and the Children’s Theatre of Charlotte

. Work experience within self selected divisions and departments of Main Library, or any of the 23 other locations. Focus areas for PLCMC include community engagement, organisational excellence, research, innovation and strategy, library experience, branch planning, collection management, development and building strategies

• An orientation to PLCMC and an overview of the library’s culture, management and strategic planning processes

• An opportunity to participate in Library Board and senior management meetings

• Branch visits and visits to neighbouring library systems.

We are very excited about this special opportunity to learn and share with a leading US public library. I'll keep you posted on their adventures!

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