Katie Sherrie Kristin Memorial Scholarship recipient

Katie Utschig, of the SWITCH Consortium, Wisconsin, won the 2024 Sherrie Kristin Memorial Scholarship, an award which honors Sherrie Kristin’s many contributions to the ELUNA community. Katie was presented with the award at the ELUNA 2024 Annual Meeting, and contributed the following report on her ELUNA conference experience.

I would like to thank the ELUNA Steering committee and contributors to the Sherrie Kristin
Memorial Scholarship. Through your generosity, I attended Developers Day+ and the ELUNA
Annual Meeting this past May in Minneapolis. It was a fantastic conference and a wonderful
opportunity to connect in person with librarians and systems administrators from across the

I enjoyed the Ex Libris/Clarivate presentations on the Next Discovery Experience User Interface,
Research Assistant, and other projects exploring the utility of generative AI in the library
ecosystem. Our consortium of small libraries has neither the staff nor the expertise to make
significant modifications to Primo VE, so I appreciate Ex Libris’ commitment to innovation and
continuous improvement. I am excited to see how Research Assistant might help first year and
international students begin the research process.

I also loved making new friends and getting to put a face to people I only knew from the ELUNA
lists. I appreciated the frequent breaks (and snacks) that gave me time to have casual
conversations with other attendees. I met such a range of librarians from those just gearing up
for implementation to those who have worked for Alma from its inception. There was something
to learn and something to offer from each encounter.

However, the highlights of the week were the workshops by ELUNA members. So many
incredible people gave excellent presentations, sharing their tips, tricks, and special projects.
With so many good options each session, I often had a tough time deciding between two
presentations. I enjoyed intensely practical presentations like Kristen Fredericksen’s “I Didn’t
Know You Could Do That in Alma?” and Kathryn Lybarger’s “Looking for Trouble: Using Alma
Analytics to Find Problems in Your Catalog” because they gave me ideas I could implement
right away when I got home. But I also liked more specialized workshops, like Jackie Wrosch’s
“Using Counter Data for Collection Assessment Projects: Question, Confirm and Trust” that
affirmed many of my own challenges trying to work with this data.

In closing, ELUNA 2024 was wonderful experience. I would not have been able to attend
without the Sherrie Kristin Memorial Scholarship, and I thank everyone who helped fund this
incredible opportunity. I only hope I can find my own way to pay it forward in the years to come.

Katie UtschigConsortium Coordinator
SWITCH Library Consortium