MCLS Regional Meeting/MeLCat Regional Symposium

Over a two week period in July 2015, MCLS and the Library of Michigan traveled across the state and met with library staff from the Detroit area, to Muskegon, north to Marquette, and points in-between. Over 200 library staff participated in our seven events. Thank you all who took the time, and special thanks to our host libraries.

We learned many things in our MeLCat Symposiums and Michigan Regional Meetings, and affirmed many more. First, Michigan library staff are passionate about their jobs. They strive to make their library the thriving center of their communities, and want to assist the greater library community to build a better Michigan. Second, it was glaringly apparent from the welcoming libraries who hosted, to the participants who traveled to the meetings, that there is a desire in the library community for more face-to-face interaction. The value of having one-on-one, or small group, discussions was easily recognizable. Bits of information that would never be brought up in a large formal setting percolated up in the form of “Oh by the way” conversations again and again in the meetings. Thank you for being so candid.

A highlight of the days’ events was the MeLCat/RIDES trivia contest, with prizes! Many participants took away a more global view of MeLCat, learning that their MeLCat library was one of 417, operating on 25 different integrated library systems (ILS) in the state. Breaking some library stereotypes, there were noise makers and a lot of laughs during the game. Shhh! Don’t tell we were having fun while learning at the same time.

The morning session was updates about special library projects and initiatives. A component of the morning session was dedicated to conversation with library staff talking with MCLS and Library of Michigan staff, regarding pressing topics they wanted addressed.

MCLS/Library of Michigan morning presentation pdf-icon.png

The afternoon the "MeLCat Symposium" was an opportunity to join in a conversation about whatever participants wanted to discuss, ask, or provide feedback about MeLCat and RIDES.

The meetings were free to all Michigan library staff and ran from 10 am – 4 pm, with lunch included.

Dates and location


  • 10:00 – Welcome 
  • 10:10 – MCLS Update: Current projects and what’s on the horizon 
  • 10:40 – Library of Michigan report and update 
  • 11:00 – Break 
  • 11:10 – Break out table talks: Our library community at a crossroads 
  • 12:00 – Lunch 
  • 1:00 – MeLCat Update: What's new and exciting? 
  • 1:15 – MeLCat Lightning Round: Policies and processing 
  • 1:30 – RIDES: News and discussion 
  • 2:00 – Break 
  • 2:15 – MeLCat and RIDES trivia contest (with prizes!) 
  • 2:30 – MeLCat community conversation 
  • 3:45 – Wrap-up 
  • 4:00 – Adjourn