Showing Off at ALA Midwinter 2011

What a week it has been! From warm and sunny days in San Diego to snow-covered NYC! Everyone is finally home after a great ALA Midwinter 2011 conference. Overall, we had a crew of six Tutor team members on hand in California. There were some long time veterans (Susan Del Rosario, Tom Squillace, Sandi White and Gary Yip) and two new faces (Lauren Lobdell and Stephen Schrage).

ALA Midwinter 2011

Everyone had a really wonderful experience at ALA Midwinter 2011 – meeting with clients and new friends, and working live-and-in-person with remote co-workers. Highlights included the charm of friendly San Diego Californians, the amazing Mexican food, sunset on at Mission Beach, the excitement of the convention center hall itself, and the wonderful energy of the attendees who stopped by our booth. Overall, this conference felt like there was real renewed enthusiasm among all attending.

Lauren’s first conference experience was a great one! She got to meet a bunch of clients in-person and was busy at the booth demoing our newest mobile app, To Go. “It was great to hear about how many clients think that this will be a valuable tool in helping their patrons bridge the digital divide.”

Holly Jin, Children’s Librarian of Skokie Public Library shared the blog post she wrote to get the word out about this new research tool for students.

Steve Schrage, our new conference go-to guy, was excited to be able to share the experience with our friends at Mango Languages. Carly from Mango Languages came over to the booth to try out for herself.  It was her first time using the service and she spent about 15 minutes with one of our expert tutors, re-learning how to do a challenging math problem.  Steve reports that “she was blown away by how easy it was and she is going back to find out if her library offers”

ALA Midwinter 2011

It was wonderful hearing about all the exciting things librarians are doing for their communities. We met up with our friends from Joliet Public Library including director, Dianne Harmon, and program manager, Andrea Sowers. This year, Andrea sat on the Fabulous Films for Young Adults committee. Their theme was “Other Times, Other Places,” focused on historical, fantasy, and science fiction movies. Take a look at the list of Fab Films for YA 2011. Account Executive Susan DelRosario really enjoyed attending the Sunrise Speaker Series (Kathy Reichs) with Terry from Solano County Library.

We were really proud to see that the feedback we incorporated from our Advisory boards and feedback surveys were well received. Clients really loved our mobile app, and were also impressed by the new feature improvements! Students can now select and connect to their favorite tutors again and again and even see tutors’ schedules to plan their homework and study time.

Thanks for a great time, and don’t forget to check out more of our pictures and include your own in the ALA Midwinter Flickr pool. See you in New Orleans!

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