Deepen the Impact and Visibility of Rice Research

Fondren provides expertise, space, and information resources to deepen the impact and visibility of research by Rice faculty, staff, and students. As an intellectual hub, Fondren is well-positioned to facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration; it also provides diverse expertise to support research and teaching. 

Rice Digital Scholarship Archive selects new software 

  • Between January of 2021 and May of 2022, the Rice University Institutional Repository Software Evaluation Task Force examined what institutional repository software Fondren should adopt, seeking a system that offers robust support for describing, organizing, discovering, and preserving articles, reports, videos, audio recordings, and other digital objects made available through the Rice Digital Scholarship Archive. After conducting background research, a thorough requirements analysis, user interviews, and software evaluations, the team recommended selecting DSpace 7, which is the latest version of the repository software Fondren has used since the early 2000s. DSpace 7 offers a number of advantages, including a better user interface and enhanced workflows. Digital Scholarship Services will migrate to DSpace 7 in 2023. In the meantime, the Woodson Research Center selected Quartex as the platform for archival materials and will be moving its content there in 2023.

Tableau Dashboard
Tableau Dashboard

Shepherd School of Music Digitization Project

  • In 2016 Digital Scholarship Services staff and the Woodson Research Center staff began a project to digitize thousands of past performances by the students and faculty of the Shepherd School, working with staff from Reference, Cataloging and Metadata Services, and Access Services. As of June 30th, 2022, the digitization of all content converted from analog formats (printed performance programs, cassette tapes, reel to reel tapes, and CDs) was completed and files were uploaded to the Rice Digital Scholarship archive. Over 4,200 audio performances, given from 1974 through 2015, are now available for users to stream. We acknowledge the generous support from Fondren Library, the Woodson Research Center, the Friends of Fondren Library, and the Rice Historical Society, which made this possible.

Scholarly communication and publishing services 

  • In Fall 2021, Fondren Digital Scholarship Services announced a new initiative: Library Publishing Services. Publishing services align with the library’s efforts to deepen the impact and visibility of Rice research and support open access. The suite of services and resources has been developed to support the creation of scholarly publications created by members of the Rice community. Library staff provide consultations on a wide range of scholarly publishing topics, facilitate the assignment of digital object identifiers (DOIs), and manage several digital publishing platforms.

Undergraduate Creative Writing Awards

In spring 2022, Fondren Library held its 6th Annual Undergraduate Creative Writing Awards. For this contest, Fondren Library hires non-Rice judges with guidance from the English Department's creative writing faculty. Three undergraduates are awarded $1000 each for entries in poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. This year Fondren received 28 submissions in poetry, 29 in fiction, and 19 in nonfiction from 52 student entrants.

This year, the Susan Wood Prize in Poetry was judged by Matthew Olzmann and awarded to Sophia Peng, a McMurtry College sophomore. Olzmann wrote that he "[admires] these poems for their wit, their technical sophistication, and the unexpected associations they make." The Larry McMurtry Prize in Fiction was judged by Sabrina Orah Mark and awarded to Kristie Lynn for her story, "Defects". Mark wrote that "'Defects' chilled me to the core as it shone a bright, strange light on the human heart." The Max Apple Prize in Nonfiction was judged by Casey Gerald and awarded to Julia Li, a Brown College sophomore, for her piece, “妈”. For Gerald, "'妈' delivers on the promise of personal narrative: that by taking the risk to explore their inner life and intimate relations, the writer can help us understand something true about ourselves." A winners' reading was held on April 20th with Ms. Peng and Ms. Li reading to about a dozen attendees.

Each prize is named for a former Rice faculty member and prominent creative writer. Fondren Library is proud to award excellence in undergraduate creative writing as we support students' reading and learning with our collections and services.