by Margareta Horiba
Tulane University Law Library
We are heading steadily for Baltimore and the waterfront. One deadline after the other goes by shaping the events of the Annual Meeting and it is not too early to ask ourselves what we want to accomplish there or in the meantime.
At the heart of the activities are the educational programs. They have been decided since last fall, with some disappointment for our SIS. The approaches taken in the selection were explained to some extent in the Program Announcement that came out last December. That notwithstanding, the selection process is a source of concern, and our education chair, Marci Hoffman, has raised several questions and comments in this regard. On the hopeful side I can report that we were given the opportunity to make suggestions regarding the Annual Meeting format and content to the newly established AALL Professional Development Committee chaired by Kay Todd. I have forwarded Marci's thoughtful suggestions and hope they will be taken into account.
The crunch of the matter is that we are assured only one program slot and have to compete for the others. Educational programs designed to be helpful to our members don't always make it and at the same time the FCIL SIS is no longer alone in proposing programs with foreign and international contents. We need to coordinate our efforts better and we need to start the process of developing programs much earlier in the year. By the time we meet in Baltimore there is precious little time left to fine-tune proposals before they have to be submitted.
As I write this message the FCIL SIS homepage is under construction and in the competent hands of Anne Burnett. By the time you read it we may have a site where you can post program proposals and any suggestions or wishes you may have for the workings of our SIS. In time it will be linked to the AALLNET. The temporary site is found at http://www.lawsch.uga.edu/fcil/fcil.html
I have enjoyed reading the report of the Special Committee, "Towards a Renaissance in Law Librarianship," and feel encouraged by the stand it takes on the need for professional knowledge and educational opportunities. How can we identify what the needs are for our members? Another take on the library profession, a discouraging picture of a fishing expedition, is found in the editorial of Legal Reference Services Quarterly, vol. 15(2) 1996, which I recommend highly. There is much food for thought out there.