Behind the Scenes of "Better Living"

The "Better Living" team at the State Farmers Market

The "Better Living" team at the State Farmers Market

June is the final month of the “Better Living in North Carolina” LSTA-funded grant project. Over the past two years, NCSU Libraries and the F. D. Bluford Library at NC A&T have made thousands of cooperative extension materials available online for researchers to access. Large undertakings like this don’t just happen overnight; it takes a lot of work over a long period of time to put together a project of this magnitude. Here is a look behind the scenes at the people who helped to bring “Better Living” to life.

[From left to right]

Brian Dietz is the Digital Program Librarian for Special Collections at NCSU Libraries. Brian is one of the co-principal investigators of the project, and acts and the technical/production lead.

Iyanna Sims is the Head of Bibliographic, Metadata & Discovery Services at the Bluford Library, and worked as the computer technology expert for NC A&T.

James Stewart is the Head of Archives & Special Collections at the Bluford Library, where he is responsible for selecting the material to be included in the project as well as performing the quality control on and the sharing of digital content with NCSU Libraries. He has been in this role since January 2017; prior to this, he worked as the project coordinator at NCSU Libraries.

Christopher Hogendoorn is the Digital Project Librarian and current project coordinator at NCSU, where he oversees the day-to-day production and quality control of all “Better Living” material.

Todd Kosmerick is the NCSU University Archivist and co-principal investigator of the project, serving as the content lead responsible for selecting the material and leading outreach efforts for the grant.

Netta Cox is the Head of Serials/Government Documents Librarian at the Bluford Library, where she is the principal investigator for the project at NC A&T, managing the overall progress of the grant.

Not pictured is Gloria Pitts, the outgoing Head of Archives & Special Collections at the Bluford Library, who also selected material to be part of the project.

We would not have been able to do this project without the assistance of our dedicated students. At NCSU Libraries, Jacque Dinnes, Derek Huss, and Jeanette Shaffer scanned and created the metadata for thousands of “Better Living” items, while Jamare Byers, Brielle Cowan, Sherilynn Knight, and Amani Newman did the corresponding work at the Bluford Library.

The end of the project is approaching, but new “Better Living” material is being added all the time, and is available as part of the NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to thousands of images, video, audio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics. While you’re at it, check out the Historical State timeline on the Cooperative Extension Service.