Monthly Archives: December 2009

Happy holidays, enjoy your break, & all that stuff.

Whatever your plans are between Fall and Spring semester, all of us from Rentschler Library hope that you enjoy the break immensely! Our hours will be changing during the break, but we’ll still be open from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. to serve you. Of course, even libraries need to take a break sometimes, so please check out our Hours page for information about library closings.

Bring food to the library & get PUNCHED! In a good way…

Help Shared Harvest fight hunger by bringing a non-perishable food item to Rentschler Library & we’ll give you a free punch on your “Frequent User Card”. That’s right–you get to help area families in need, while also helping yourself to a free 1 Gb flashdrive or a cool set of earbuds. So next time you’re at the store buying some soup, peanut butter, cereal, etc.(click HERE for a list of suggested items) , pick up an extra one to bring to campus Earn a punch, help the community, AND feel good about yourself–it’s a win-win-win.

To learn more about Shared Harvest, you can also watch their promotional video .

Image from flickr:

What do blueberries, H20, & sleep have in common?

They’re all weapons in your war against exams. If you’re expecting your brain to help you on your finals, try recriprocating the favor…

Feed it some blueberries! While any colorful fruits & vegetables are good for you, “animals treated with blueberries exhibited an 83 percent improvement on tests of memory within three weeks, and the improvement was maintained for the remainder of the 12-week study” (  The antioxidants and vitamins may also give your whole body a boost!

Sure, many of you will turn to energy drinks while studying, but be sure that you back your Red Bull up with a nice, big glass of water. Caffeine and other stimulants can dehydrate you and you NEED that water to keep your brain happy & healthy bopping around in your head. Since your brain is about 80% water (Top 10 Back to School…”), you don’t want it shriveling up when you go to take your test.

And sleep? Sleep is hard to get when you’re worried about exams and chugging energy drinks! Try to stick to a regular sleeping schedule–even if you have to cut a few hours out–and the studying you do will be more productive.  Your brain needs some rest to funtion at its best, so help it recall all those facts you’ve been memorizing by letting it get some z’s.

Rentschler Books for Acing Finals

Effective College Learning (Holschuh & Nist 2007)
College Reading & Study Skills (McWhorter 2007)
Math Study Skills (Bass 2008)
College Success Strategies (Holschuh & Nist 2006)

Spies Amongst Us

Yes, the KGB was operating in America back in the 30s and 40s.   Hot off the press – and taking up lots of space on Rentschler Library’s New Book shelves – is the book “Spies: the Rise and Fall of the KGB in America” by John Earl Haynes, Harvey Klehr, and Alexander Vassiliev.   New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2008. 

The book details KGB operations in the U.S. back in the 30s and 40s and is based on the notebooks of Alexander Vassiliev, a former KGB officer who spent 2 years  combing through part of that Russian spy organization’s archives.  The Vassiliev notebooks, as they came to be called, “offer the most complete look at Soviet espionage in America” says the co-authors Haynes and Klehr (Library of Congress Manuscript Division, and Emory University respectively).  

Among the revelations in this book:  Robert Oppenheimer (he of the Manhattan Project) was not recruited by Soviet intelligence;  Alger Hiss DID cooperate with Soviet Intelligence;  and American journalist I.F. Stone at one time worked for the KGB.   As a reviewer in Library Journal says “This work does more than just finger KGB operatives; it offers insight into the spies’ personalities and motives.”

 Historian David Murphy, author of What Stalin Knew said “This work should serve as the final salvo in the long battle between those who are still in denial regarding KGB espionage in America in the 1930s and 40s, and those who assert that this story must be told.”

 Many of Vassiliev’s notebooks have been digitized and are available at website for the The Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars.

 Another title on this same topic in Rentschler Library is How the Cold War Began: the Igor Gouzenko Affair and the Hunt for Soviet Spies, by Amy Knight New York : Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2007.