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Cataloger’s Corner: Interns–where are they now, Part 2

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Matthew D. Morrison is pursuing his PhD in Musicology at Columbia University

The following is the second in a series of  guest posts by retired Senior Music Cataloger Sharon McKinley.

Former Junior Fellow Summer Intern Matthew D. Morrison is pursuing a Ph.D. in Musicology at Columbia University and writing a dissertation on “Sound in the Construction of Race in 19th-century America,” advised by George Lewis. After interning in the Special Materials Cataloging Division in 2007, Matthew has served as the first Publications Fellow at the Tanglewood Center, Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed journal, Current Musicology, adjunct professor in music at Vassar College, and he curates performances in New York City featuring string players of color.

As part of the Junior Fellows class of 2006, Jamene Brooks-Kieffer cataloged current copyright deposits of popular sheet music and Spanish language sound recordings.  Since 2006, she has held the position of Resource Linking Librarian at Kansas State University in Manhattan, KS. In June 2012,  Jamene was tenured and promoted to Associate Professor. She lives in Lawrence, KS with husband Robbie and their border collie Jill.  Jamene and Robbie are expecting their first child.

Mark Zelesky was a Junior Fellow, 2010. He  worked on the It’s Showtime database,  and helped to create an inventory of miscellaneous items acquired in the mid-20th century from various sources but never processed. He is currently a librarian at Rowan University’s music library. He is also a freelance musician in the Philadelphia area, performing on saxophone, clarinet, toy piano, and other assorted instruments.


  1. Cataloging is a means to an end period. If we dwell too much on the means (i.e. the rules) we often lose sight of the end . geitntg a seeker and what is sought together in a clear and easy manner. The rules are there to help, not hinder, and often a rule is something that can be approached from different angles and implemented in various ways that benefit your users. Also cataloging is changing catalogers are working on new ways to present/display access to information which will (hopefully) make things less daunting.Don’t be afraid to learn how to catalog. It may seem overwhelming but it’s a rewarding way to connect people and information. Even if you just learn the basics it will give you an insight to how your catalog works and may offer you an opportunity to approach that film cataloger with suggestions on how to improve access/description in his/her records.I’ve been cataloging for 23 years. I have a decent knowledge of the rules, MARC Format, etc. But my goal is not a perfect record, it’s connecting someone to an item in my library or on the Internet. I listen to the reference staff and patrons what confuses/helps them and I act on that using the rules like a guard rail on a highway. They do not bind me but allow me to work within a general framework for the greater good.The last thing I want to do is throw rules at folks who come to me and ask why a catalog record makes no sense. My first response is How can we improve access then? It’s a great opportunity to work with public service people and patrons and learn a bit about how folks approach/use a catalog.Bill SowersState Library of Kansas

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