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Blog Posts by Subject: Social Sciences

Andrew Heiskell Library Announcements and Links for October

Once again, we're sharing highlights from our postings on Facebook, featuring updates from the National Library Service, news about our programs, and links to sites we thought interesting and useful. You can follow us on Facebook to get all our updates as we post them.

BARD Update

Good news for those of you reading magazines on BARD. According to NLS:

"The pages will now display the reading time, narrators, and the descriptive 

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Behind the Scenes at the Audio Book Studio

Headphones and CDs

Have you ever wondered why it takes so long for new books to be added to our Talking Book collection? A lot of steps make up the process. Here at the Andrew Heiskell Library, we are able to supplement the audio collection we get from the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) with books we record in our own Audio Book Studio (ABS), with the assistance of volunteer narrators, monitors, and audio 

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Now That's History!

Ancient History, Middle Ages, Industrial Revolution... Does history homework make you feel like you are in the Dark Ages? Well be enlightened by the library's resources!

You can find complete, trustworthy information a lot faster using the library’s databases and apps.

Here’s how to access NYPL’s databases: 1. Go to 2. Click on ‘Find Books, DVDs, & More’ in the top menu 3. Click on ‘Articles and Databases’ in the left sidebar 4. Databases are listed 

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Painless Cover Letter Writing

With emails and tweets, writing or reading an entire letter seems old fashioned and overwhelming now, but a well written cover letter could help you get your foot in the door when you wouldn't have otherwise.

Even if you hate writing or think you are a horrible writer, you can still prepare an effective cover letter as long as you keep the following points in mind:

Keep it brief:  4-5 paragraphs at the most Customize it for the job and company Proofread it and have someone else proofread it

What goes into an effective cover 

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Employed and Miserable: Dealing With a Job You Hate During a Recession

It's hard to find much to be happy about when you think about the news for job seekers now.  In theory, it seems like the rotten economy would turn that annoying job you took to pay the bills right out of college into the best thing ever if you're still "lucky" enough to have it.  The unfortunate reality is that most workers are trudging through the day doing the same work they were doing before plus the work of colleagues who had their positions cut.  Meanwhile, the pressure is on to work overtime on short notice and without complaint, and to forgo little things 

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Andrew Heiskell Library's Roundup of Links and Articles for September

Once again, we're presenting links to sites covering disability issues, as well as announcements of changes and enhancements of the services, and anything else that caught our attention during September. These links and announcements previously appeared on our Facebook and Twitter pages.  

The National Library Service  made the following announcements:

"NLS will cease production of books on cassette as of 

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Andrew Heiskell Library: Ahead of Our Time

We're sometimes asked to explain what we do to individuals or groups of people interested in or in need of the library services we provide. In the past, this often meant long, even tedious descriptions of how we put the right books in the homes of our patrons. There was little if anything to which we could make comparisons.

But now, thanks to online services like Amazon, the explanation has become a snap. The following is from a presentation made by Mark McCluski, Head of the Andrew Heiskell Library. We thought you would enjoy reading 

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Will the Myers-Briggs Tell Me What I Should Be When I Grow Up?

With the unemployment rate stuck at over 9%, seeing the bright side of the situation can be tough.  One positive outcome of these hard times is that job seekers are becoming more interested in finding a job that's a good fit, not just something to pay the bills.

Unfortunately, it can be difficult to identify what the right job would be if you don't have much experience doing work you enjoy.  As a career counselor, I get a lot of questions from clients about personality assessments, and if I had to pick the one I get asked about the most, it would be the

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Back-to-School Tips

It’s that time of the year. Kids sharpen their pencils, pick up the backpack, and head off to school. Here are a few tips to get your child ready for the new school year.

• Re-establish school routines. About a week before school starts get your child used to going to bed early, waking up early, picking out their clothes the night before, and start talking about what is expected from them this upcoming school year.

• Prepare. It’s extremely important that your child has all their school supplies when heading into the classroom. But 

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Mean Streets to Green Streets

Thomas Jefferson Park, 1939 Photo: Max UlrichIn the smoldering heat of summer, one of my greatest pleasures has been to find reprieve in New York City’s lush and thriving community gardens. For all the grandeur of the city’s more widely celebrated green spaces like Central Park and Prospect Park, there are hundreds of small-scale urban oases nestled in formerly decrepit lots across the five boroughs.

At one community garden that I visited in Alphabet City, a woman was simmering curry over the communal grill. “I love to cook outside in the 

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Happy New Year, Circa 1910: Pop-up Greeting Cards in the Jewish Division

If you visit your local stationery store in September, you may well find a small selection of Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) cards. The cards will probably have the standard Hebrew greeting for the new year, Le-shanah tovah tikatevu (literally, "May you be inscribed for a good year"). They may be serious, as befits a greeting card for the "Days of Awe," or light-hearted. (I saw one recently that showed a man asking his neighbor, "How's your New Year going?" Answer: "Shofar, so good").  It's 

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In the Neighborhood: Theodore Roosevelt's Birthplace

Of all the reference questions I expected upon coming to work at the Andrew Heiskell Library in its current location on West 20th Street in Manhattan, "Where is Teddy Roosevelt's birthplace?" was nowhere on my list. I quickly learned that the Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace Historic Site is a short two blocks east, at 28 East 20th Street, and that this question comes up mostly during the summer tourist season. Since then, I've often walked past this now familiar, unassuming townhouse and 

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"Wow, That's Amazing That You Do That!" Volunteering at the Center for Reading and Writing

Tutoring at the Center for Reading and WritingThe Centers for Reading and Writing are recruiting volunteer tutors for our fall class cycle beginning in September, so I've been thinking about what it means to volunteer here in the library's adult literacy program.    

I decided to speak with Gale, who has been volunteering at the Center for Reading and Writing for over twenty years. When I 

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Let's Get Social

For a long time, our newsletter, NewsLion, has been our primary way to communicate with people, and while it remains the best way to update the most people on new services, the latest books recorded in our very own Audio Book Studio, upcoming programs, and other services and agencies of interest to our patrons, it is not the most timely of publications. Because it is published only four times a year, we find out about many interesting and useful books, services, and programs too late to include them in the latest issue. To help get the 

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Do You BARD?

Digital Talking Book Cartridge and ContainerIf Google can be used as a verb, why not BARD? BARD is the acronym for the National Library Service's Braille and Audio Reading Download service. If you're registered for Talking Book service from the Andrew Heiskell Library and have a digital player, either a National Library Service (NLS) machine or one you purchased from an outside vendor such as HumanWare, you're probably already downloading books. But if not, 

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Behind the Scenes at the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library

People often ask us how we send out our books. Sometimes, it seems as if they magically appear in mailboxes across the city, but there's a lot of hard work that goes on behind the scenes to make that magic happen. We here at the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library thought we'd give you a peek into the processes of connecting books and patrons of the library. We'll start this series of posts with a look at patron profiles.

Everyone has a profile, based on the application for 

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Closing gaps on your resume

When it comes to addressing gaps in employment, job seekers tend to do one of three things:  1. lie, 2. leave everything as is and hope nobody notices, 3. provide an elaborate explanation that gives the prospective employer more information than they need or want.  Every situation is unique, so it is impossible to give one solution that will work for every gap, but some strategies are more effective than others.

Take credit for what you've been doing

If you have been a caregiver or a stay-at-home parent, it's better to put that down than to leave 

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Are you underpaid?

It's 4 o'clock and you could swear that the clock must be stuck since it feels like it has been 4 o'clock for hours.  Everything aches after that two hour workout you did yesterday because you got stuck in yet another meeting that went nowhere.  On top of it all, you just got an email from your boss saying you need to complete another report that you know he isn't going to read and it's due in a day.  When you finally get home after fighting the crowds on the hot, filthy subway cars, you might catch yourself saying, "They don't pay me enough to put up with 

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Job Hunting: Now with more social media

If you went to the movies this weekend, you would probably that agree that Facebook pops-up in everything.  Not only is David Fincher bringing The Social Network to the big screen so we can all know more than we ever wanted to about Facebook's founders, but SimplyHired can now use your profile to find hiring companies where you have friends!  But wait, there's more: you can also find the recruiting 

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Changing the Changing City

Seeking further enlightenment into the city we call home, I recently took a class on the literary and cultural history of New York City. Among the many themes common to New York City novels we discussed was the portrayal of the city itself as a character with power to shape the lives of its citizens.

Many of us New Yorkers have felt this pressure in our own lives: we choose where to live based on our budgets, our hobbies, our family situation, and often our ethnic, linguistic or religious 

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