This has been a year of transition here at the Cooper Library at Clemson. The entire Library has been reorganized into larger units. A number of our Reference Librarians have retired, and subject areas have been combined to distribute them among the remaining staff members. It has been an adjustment, but I am beginning to settle in to the new workflows. More changes are sure to come along, and I am trying hard to roll with it. Change is good, right? We have also hired some new people, including Andy Wesolek, Head of Digital Scholarship. He is working on developing our newly-launched institutional repository and is dealing with copyright issues of all sorts. This is welcome, as I now have someone who is eager to answer copyright questions. Hooray! I am planning to work with him on other intellectual property matters so that I have a backup.
After taking a break last spring, I taught a one-hour credit-bearing patent searching class again this spring. I had 23 students this year, most of whom were Mechanical Engineering or Bioengineering students preparing for their senior design projects. We had an unusual year, however, with THREE snow days! Here’s hoping I don’t have to deal with THAT again! We still managed to cover the most important topics, including a mock invention disclosure presented by a student inventor. This is always a highlight, and I know the students enjoy the benefits of thoroughly understanding the patent process at Clemson.
I continue to represent the Library (and the PTRC by extension) on the Intellectual Property Committee. I continue to work closely with a number of student and faculty design groups. I met with a ton of individual students, and did my almost famous presentation I call Patent FUNdamentals for a number of groups. I’m so sorry to have missed last year’s seminar and now this year’s too. I look forward to seeing all of you NEXT year!
– Jan Comfort