Tracy holding cast of Tiktaalik roseae

Tracy holding cast of Tiktaalik roseae

I recently attended the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting in San Jose, California, February 12-16, 2015. I was one of only thirty science Librarians provided with a sponsored (i.e., free) registration through AAAS; and one of the highlights of the meeting was attending the discussion forum for sponsored librarians. During this session, librarians made presentations related to the AAAS Meeting theme: Innovations, Information, and Imaging. Librarians discussed innovative services offered in academic and research libraries for data support, digitizing collections, collaborating with researchers, and providing resources that transform pedagogy.
I also attended a lot of the sessions and meeting and learned a lot! Dr. Neil Shubin, a paleontologist and evolutionary biologist who researches the origin of animal anatomical features, delivered the closing lecture. Shubin’s popular science book Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body was adapted for a PBS documentary series in 2014. After the lecture I got the chance to hold a cast of one of his discoveries, Tiktaalik roseae, which has been described as the “missing link” between fish and land animals.
If you have the opportunity, I highly recommend attending a general science meeting such as AAAS. I was able to network and learn from fellow science librarians but also from the scientists in attendance. I learned a lot more about their needs and was able to bring back information that will help my library provide enhanced services.