Stillman News

Exploring the Library’s Database Services

Mark DiPietro

For Stillman undergrads, the library services may seem a bit foreign. By no fault of either party, it simply does not appear to be congruent to most students with the typical business undergraduate course load, a curriculum that seldom requires students to check out historical books or use in depth academic research. But that is a notion that Kayla Glynn, the business and data librarian, is trying to debunk. Her goal is to encourage more undergrads to take advantage of the data services and other resources offered by the Walsh Library.

Ms. Glynn is new to campus, arriving in South Orange on July 3rd. But rest assured, she is no typical librarian. As a graduate of the College of New Jersey with a B.S. in Finance, she has the perfect background to act as a liaison to business students. Not only that, but she also knows what skills are demanded in the workplace as she spent time with firms like Bloomberg and Jefferies while building expertise before ultimately going back to school at UNC Chapel Hill for a master’s in library science. She hopes to use this academic and professional background to showcase how useful Walsh Library’s resources can be when completing coursework and how to leverage them when looking for a job.

Make use of the library’s many resources today! (Photo Courtesy of Seton Hall University Libraries)

So, what does the library specifically have to offer to hopeful, future business professionals? One word, data. The rise of analytical decision making in the business world has already or will soon force virtually every sophisticated job role into working with data in one way or another. That means that the professionals of tomorrow must be readily prepared with those skills before entering the work force if they hope to contend with the very best. Luckily, the library has just the tools to get you there.

The first helpful thing is the treasure trove of information to be found within Walsh. While there are thousands of books within the library’s walls, there are also thousands more books and articles available to students through interlibrary borrowing. That is a service that connects university libraries together and offers resources available to be shipped from place to place like an exchange. As it relates to data, there are numerous data sources to explore whether you are looking for a specific data set for a class project, career research, or simply for your own personal projects. These data sources are free and accessible to use for students.

Besides the availability of data, there are also ample means to learn how to manipulate data and use basic data analysis techniques. Glynn, and the other librarians, consistently offer instructional classes on topics like Stata, Python, RStudio, Power BI, and more! Check out listings under “Data Services Classes” in the Data Services homepage. If you are in need of more personal workshops or consultations, note that the staff is available for 1 on 1 sessions by appointment for specific data questions. Just don’t go ask them for answers to your homework!

What about resources for students who are a little beyond the basic data skills but want to sharpen their proverbial tools? The library has activities for them as well. DataLab is an interdisciplinary project that aims to pair faculty completing research initiatives with high quality students to aid them in their pursuits. From a faculty perspective, they can take on more labor-intensive projects knowing they have an extra helping hand. From the student’s perspective, they receive real world experience working with data that helps prepare them for a real job in a way that a theoretical classroom setting just cannot do. To learn more and see how you can participate, students can contact Kayla Glynn.

As is clear, there are plenty of opportunities at the Walsh library for students, especially business students. One of Ms. Glynn’s top priorities is letting business students know about these resources with the emphasis that they are free and open to use. Don’t wait to develop these skills or you may get left behind in the rapidly evolving job market. Get involved now by exploring the data library site and emailing Kayla Glynn (!


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