Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Service Award Ceremony at NJIT Today

Today at the service awards ceremony at NJIT I was recognized for 20 years of service.  I actually started on September 14, 1992, so I am really closer to 22 years of service.  Chemical engineering professor Deran Hanesian and physics professor Lou Russo were honored for 50 years.  I actually feel I should also receive an award from New Jersey Transit for being a loyal customer for 20+ years.

4 of my colleagues were also recognized for long service.  From left to right Haymwantee Singh (20 years), yours truly, Doreen Mettle (25 years) and Matt Brown (10 years)

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Do Students Frown on Information Literacy?

I'd like to follow up on my last entry.  After 4+ weeks students finally submitted their assignments in the class on how to find physical and thermodynamic properties of substances.  What is their reaction to an outsider coming into their class to give a lecture?  Would their attitude be different if their professor gave the information literacy lecture.  I find that students do well on the assignment even after procrastinating.  Perhaps I have made the assignment too easy.  I do think that students should gain experience in using free and subscription databases to find information.  However, it is inevitable that they will just Google to find the information they need.  Are they interested in learning new skills or just to get their grade and finish it?

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Why Do Students Fail to Submit Assignments?

Again any opinions expressed here are my own and are not meant to criticize any specific institutions or individuals.

For many years I have taught a class on how to find physical and thermodynamic properties of chemical substances.  I give an assignment that should take no more than 2 hours to complete and give a deadline of 2 weeks to complete it.  This semester only 3 of 25 students completed this assignment in 2 weeks?  Why is the rate of completion so low this semester compared to others?  A few weeks ago, we could blame the snow days that disrupted the flow of the semester.  This is a class given to chemistry and chemical engineering majors.  Why is there so much apathy and disinterest?

Likewise, I have taught a few sections of the Research Road Maps which are information literacy sessions given to freshmen students taking humanites courses.  Likewise the submission rate is low, bt more than 12% in the chemistry class that I gave.

I guess I am using this blog to vent.

Friday, February 21, 2014

This is a Disgrace to the Profession of Librarianship

The opinions that I express here are that of my own and have nothing to do with my employer.  I am a resident of Queens County and a taxpayer of New York City and State and am outraged about the situation with Thomas Galante, the CEO of the Queens Library.

Mr. Galante has a perk filled salary of $392,000 which is more than the Governor or the Mayor.  The New York Daily News  reports that library's board of trustees paid a consulting firm $28,000 to review Galante's contract and come back with a recommendation for revising his contract.  I wish they would use that $28,000 for books for the small branch libraries.  The Daily News article also revealed that until recently Galante had a $2 Million "Golden Parachute" that was removed by the trustees.

$140,000 was also spent to renovate Galante's office including a private smoking deck courtesy of the taxpayers.

This is outrageous to me as I have observed that the book collection at my local branch is so small.  Anecdotally, the salaries at Queens Library are low in comparison to other public libraries.

A library director should fight for better resources for his organization and for competitive salaries for the librarians and clerks who directly work with the public.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Still Quiet at the Reference Desk

A Reference  Desk with No Patrons or Librarian

The Spring Semester has just begun and the downward trend in reference transactions continues.  At the beginning of semesters I generally get bombarded by textbook questions as students try to avoid purchasing the book by obtaining it from the library.  I have not received such a question.  Is the internet and Google killing reference librarianship?  I fondly remember the days when I worked at the Sci-Tech division of NYPL when there was a line of people waiting for reference services.  I certainly would not recommend a young person to pursue a career in reference librarianship.  The students seem tech savvy enough to learn to find information by themselves with minimal assistance


The output of this blog has diminished greatly as I now have only one or two entries a month.  I used to comment on interesting questions that I received.  I guess I need to vent on a cold Friday afternoon.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Remembering Madalyn Paganetti

Today I heard about the passing of Madalyn Paganetti who was a cataloger at the NJIT Library until her retirement in 2003.  Her obituary in the Star-Ledger  stated she was 88 years old.

In all the years that I have worked at the NJIT Library, Madalyn had to be the friendliest worker.  She never had a bad word to say about anyone.  I remember she organized a lottery pool for the library employees.  We never won anything, but this helped to unify the staff.  She enjoyed her job as she worked until she was about 78 years old.  I remember her retirement luncheon at the Manor in West Orange.  She kept in touch with us for several years after her retirement.  It is a shame that the newer people in the library never had the pleasure of working with her.

My condolences to her family.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Happy Retirement to Carol Venanzi of the NJIT Chemistry Department

 There was a retirement party today for Carol Venanzi seen above with yours truly.  She was a dedicated researcher and teacher in the Department of Chemistry and Environmental Science for over 30 years.  She was one of the first people I met when I came to NJIT in 1992.  It was my pleasure to provide library services to her for all those years.  Below is a partial list of her publications:

Pandit, D., Fiorentino, A., Bindra, S., Venanzi, C.A.
Singular value decomposition analysis of the torsional angles of dopamine reuptake inhibitor GBR 12909 analogs: Effect of force field and charges
(2011) Journal of Molecular Modeling, 17 (6), pp. 1343-1351.


Pandit, D., Roosma, W., Misra, M., Gilbert, K.M., Skawinski, W.J., Venanzi, C.A.
Conformational analysis of piperazine and piperidine analogs of GBR 12909: Stochastic approach to evaluating the effects of force fields and solvent
(2011) Journal of Molecular Modeling, 17 (1), pp. 181-200. Cited 1 time.

Misra, M., Shi, Q., Ye, X., Gruszecka-Kowalik, E., Bu, W., Liu, Z., Schweri, M.M., Deutsch, H.M., Venanzi, C.A.
Quantitative structure-activity relationship studies of threo-methylphenidate analogs
(2010) Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, 18 (20), pp. 7221-7238. Cited 4 times.

Banerjee, A., Misra, M., Pai, D., Shih, L.-Y., Woodley, R., Lu, X.-J., Srinivasan, A.R., Olson, W.K., Davé, R.N., Venanzi, C.A.
Feature extraction using molecular planes for fuzzy relational clustering of a flexible dopamine reuptake inhibitor
(2007) Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling, 47 (6), pp. 2216-2227. Cited 4 times.


Gilbert, K.M., Boos, T.L., Dersch, C.M., Greiner, E., Jacobson, A.E., Lewis, D., Matecka, D., Prisinzano, T.E., Zhang, Y., Rothman, R.B., Rice, K.C., Venanzi, C.A.
DAT/SERT selectivity of flexible GBR 12909 analogs modeled using 3D-QSAR methods
(2007) Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, 15 (2), pp. 1146-1159. Cited 8 times.

Fiorentino, A., Pandit, D., Gilbert, K.M., Misra, M., Dios, R., Venanzi, C.A.
Singular value decomposition of torsional angles of analogs of the dopamine reuptake inhibitor GBR 12909
(2006) Journal of Computational Chemistry, 27 (5), pp. 609-620. Cited 6 times.


Gilbert, K.M., Venanzi, C.A.
Hierarchical clustering analysis of flexible GBR 12909 dialkyl piperazine and piperidine analogs
(2006) Journal of Computer-Aided Molecular Design, 20 (4), pp. 209-225. Cited 7 times.

Misra, M., Banerjee, A., Davé, R.N., Venanzi, C.A.
Novel feature extraction technique for fuzzy relational clustering of a flexible dopamine reuptake inhibitor
(2005) Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling, 45 (3), pp. 610-623. Cited 8 times.

Gilbert, K.M., Skawinski, W.J., Misra, M., Paris, K.A., Naik, N.H., Buono, R.A., Deutsch, H.M., Venanzi, C.A.
Conformational analysis of methylphenidate: Comparison of molecular orbital and molecular mechanics methods
(2004) Journal of Computer-Aided Molecular Design, 18 (11), pp. 719-738. Cited 12 times.

Banerjee, A., Venanzi, C.A., Misra, M., Davé, R.N.
Fuzzy clustering in drug design: Application to cocaine abuse
(2004) Annual Conference of the North American Fuzzy Information Processing Society - NAFIPS, 1, pp. 308-313. Cited 2 time