Chelsea Harper

Chelsea Harper BA GradDipSci (InfoServ) AALIA

  • Metcalfe Award 2008

The ALIA Metcalfe Award acknowledges high achievement by a personal member in the first five years of practice. Chelsea Harper demonstrates a high level of achievement and initiative in both her professional work and professional development.

Living and working as a librarian in a regional area, Chelsea takes initiative in involving herself in professional activities in any way she can. As a result often her participation in professional activities is often 'virtual' working and networking online via the web and ALIA e-lists and via teleconferences. In many cases, Chelsea has not had the opportunity to meet face-to-face the other professionals she works with on ALIA committees, however maintains great working relationships with them through her ability to network online. The ALIA 2006 Biennial conference committee invited new graduates to run a 'wake-up' session at the conference. Chelsea worked with five other new grads to plan and present the the 'Gold Medal Coach' project session. The session was a great success as it was interactive and involved multimedia effects including music and images. The role-playing aspect with costumes was interesting and the interactive effect of getting each of the coaches up on stage to receive medals brought an exciting element to the presentation.

Chelsea's initiative can also be demonstrated in her work in actively promoting ALIA membership and benefits in an area where ALIA membership is lower than other areas. Chelsea worked as the Central Queensland ALIA New Graduates group regional coordinator, organising ALIA events such as LIW events and general networking events. Chelsea is an innovative information professional. She has a special interest in new and leading technologies and the innovation application of web2 technologies.This can be demonstrated in her successful application and award of the 2005 ALIA Ray Choate Scholarship.

Before web2 technologies became buzz words in the LIS sector, Chelsea had realised the importance they would play in the future and put together a successful research application to investigate the use of blogs and wikis in library services. Output has included hard data on a national survey of library blog and wiki use, numerous presentations at workshops and training sessions, a number of journal articles (including peer reviewed journal articles), a number of national conference presentations (incl. peer reviewed conference papers) and, a book chapter in the pipeline (currently with the editors for peer review). Chelsea has taken her innovative research into her work in projects such as setting up a wiki for managing online datasets management and collaborative selection, and designing and writing an online tutorial for generic information literacy library capabilities, 'Compass'.

She takes a leadership role in all areas of her work and professional development, and has occasionally acted in a supervisory role. Chelsea's Library Director has recognised her capabilities in this area and sent her to participate at the 2007 Aurora event. Chelsea's activities demonstrate a high level of contribution to the profession and exhibit a high level of achievement as an ALIA member, and an exceptional level of achievement as a new graduate.