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John Jay College of Criminal Justice
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Lloyd Sealy Library

John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Library News Blog

Paola Rojas, from the library to border patrol

From the Spring 2015 Newsletter

Paola Rojas was one of Saundra’s favorite “babies.” Paola worked six years as a Sealy Library College Assistant, graduating with a BS in Criminal Justice in 1998. 

After graduation, the sweet-faced, Spanish-speaking Paola was hired by the United States Border Patrol to carry a gun and enforce the Arizona border. She did her new job with the same good cheer and competence she displayed while working for the library. Although the western style grew on her, Paola was happy to move back to friends and family in New York three years ago. You might find her now at one of the airports as an investigator for Customs, or at a New York Yankees game. 

Though Paola keeps up with Saundra Dancy and the college assistants she worked with years ago, the rest of the library staff were happy to catch up with her again at Mrs. Dancy’s retirement party.

Janice Dunham

More from the Spring 2015 Newsletter »

Ed. note: We misspelled Paola's name in the print newsletter. We regret the error.

Posted Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 11:06am

From the Spring 2015 Newsletter

Saundra Dancy, the Sealy Library Circulation Supervisor, celebrated her birthday on March 30 by retiring from John Jay College. She was aided and abetted in this decision by her husband, Darryl Dancy, who retired from John Jay’s Facilities Department during the previous month. While we wish them both well in their spring bower in Pennsylvania, the College will surely miss them. 

Saundra arrived at the Library nearly twenty-five years ago upon the high recommendation of Margaret Schultze, for whom she had worked in Human Resources. Saundra’s bright spirit, ready smile and quick intelligence was immediately apparent. It wasn’t long before she had mastered the arcane details of library circulation: “unlinked item records,” “pick list,” “Aleph conversions,” “library stops,” “local patron,” “global records,” and so many others. Where Saundra always shined the brightest, however, was in her management skills.

The Library has a revolving crew of fifteen college assistants and four or five work-study students who zip in to work for a few hours between classes. Our students are subject to the vagaries of student life everywhere, plus dependent families, no previous work experience, and special immigrant status. At the center of the maelstrom, Saundra dependably orchestrated crises and continuity, going well beyond work responsibilities to mentor, cajole, encourage and help our John Jay students one after another. An indication of the influence she had on so many young lives was the number who flocked lovingly to her retirement party on March 20. Their tributes to Saundra Dancy and how she changed their lives were reminiscent of the things we usually hear at faculty retirements. The role Saundra played in the College was in the best spirit of our educational enterprise. We are grateful for her presence among us.

Janice Dunham

More from the Spring 2015 Newsletter »

Posted Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 11:05am

From the Spring 2015 Newsletter

This loving couple, Nadyia Middleton and Miguel Onativia, both John Jay graduates, met, courted, and exchanged their first Valentine’s Day gifts in the Sealy Library. 

When Miguel wanted to surprise Nadyia and ask her to marry him, of course it had to be in the Library. With the help of Jerylle Kemp, Director of Alumni Relations, and the fond participation of everyone present in the Sealy Library on December 13, Miguel and Nadyia became engaged (please notice the ring). In July they will married. (But not in the Library.)

Janice Dunham

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Posted Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 11:02am

From the Spring 2015 Newsletter

Larry Sullivan’s review of the Morgan Library and Museum’s exhibition, “Gatsby to Garp: Modern Masterpieces from the Carter Burden Collection” was published in the Spring 2015 newsletter of the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading & Publishing (SHARP). His book review of Ruth Ahnert’s The Rise of Prison Literature in the Sixteenth Century (Cambridge University Press, 2013) was published in the same issue of the SHARP newsletter. He also gave the lecture “The Brownsville Boys: Jewish Gangsters of Murder, Inc.” in the Jewish Experience series at The Suffolk Y Jewish Community Center on March 27.

Kathleen Collins had a chapter entitled “The Rise of the ‘Foodie’ and the Role of Mass Media” published in The Routledge History of Food edited by Carol Helstosky (New York: Routledge, 2015). 

Robin Davis presented “Taking Care of Digital Efforts: A Multiplanar View of Project Afterlives” at the Modern Language Association (MLA) Convention in Vancouver in January. She presented “The Internet is your business card” in April as part of the “Social Media: Finding a Platform” workshop organized by the Office for the Advancement of Research (OAR), as well as presenting “Who does the Internet think you are?” at the 2015 LACUNY Institute.

Marta Bladek was a presenter in the “Altmetrics: New Measures of Scholarly Impact” workshop organized by OAR in May.

Janice Dunham

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Posted Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 10:58am

Laurent ou les prisonniersFrom the Spring 2015 Newsletter

In a 1916 Atlantic Monthly article, Samuel Crothers coined the term “bibliotherapy.” In 1970s America the use of books as therapy for prisoners became fashionable among rehabilitationists. Reading is always good, but researchers carried out few studies for outcomes. From the 1980s affective bibliotherapy caught on, especially among cognitive behavioralists, who based their practice mainly on the reading of moral fiction and self-help books with stories or models that could improve behavior among prisoners, the mentally ill, addicts, and others. In truth, the concept of reading for therapeutic behavioral modification reached back at least to the Middle Ages and even beyond.

A recent addition to Sealy Library’s Special Collections offers a prime example of bibliotherapy in early 19th century France. In 1819, French King Louis XVIII founded the Society for the Improvement of Prisoners. One of the Society’s first actions was to hold a competition for authors to write edifying fictional literature to distribute among prisoners. An anonymous donor provided 1000 francs as a prize for the winning novel. In 1821, the contest ended with a mere ten books passing the first cut. After further examination, only two novels were in competition: Antoine et Maurice (Paris, 1821) by Laurent de Jussieu (nephew of the famous French botanist) and Laurent, ou les Prisonniers by Jean-Marie Achard-James (Paris, 1821). Jussieu’s novel won the prize, perhaps because the protagonists in the novel were not already incarcerated, but received the light and reformed before their criminal behavior put them in prison. In Laurent, however, the protagonist was a convicted criminal and his moral actions while behind bars had an ameliorating effect on his imprisoned colleagues.

We were fortunate to obtain a first edition of Laurent, the only copy outside of France where one resides in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France and another in the Bibliothèque de Lyon. This most rare book once again showcases our international reputation for criminal justice materials.

—Larry Sullivan

CUNY+ record for Laurent, ou les Prisonniers »

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Posted Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 10:51am

CUNY is building an institutional repository, CUNY Academic Works, dedicated to collecting and providing free access to the research, scholarship and creative work of the University. Faculty are encouraged to post their works here. Details of publishers’ self-archiving policies may be found on the SHERPA-RoMEO or in your publisher’s contract. In service to CUNY’s mission as a public university, content in Academic Works is freely available to all.

Visit CUNY Academic Works »

Posted Wednesday, May 6, 2015 - 11:27am


Image result for ieee digital library

The Lloyd Sealy Library now provides access to the IEEE Xplore® Digital Library.

IEEE Xplore® provides full text access to high quality technical literature in all areas including computer science and information technology.  It contains more than 3 million full-text articles and documents, from IEEE journals, transactions, magazines, letters, conference proceedings, standards and IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology) publications.

Powerful search tools  help you find the most relevant research quickly by title, author, abstract, affiliation and content type such as leading industry standards.  A proven resource for computer science students. Some of the top searched terms are: cloud computing, image processing, data mining, and network security.

IEEE, a not for profit organization, is the world’s leading professional association for the advancement of technology.  It publishes 170 journals and magazines each year and sponsors more than 1,200 annual conferences globally.  Every month, IEEE adds more than 20,000 new documents including: more than 4,000 journal articles, more than 15,000 new conference papers, and over 40 new and revised standards.










Posted Friday, May 1, 2015 - 3:57pm



The Lloyd Sealy Library has a free trial of PsycTESTS, a database from the American Psychological Association. This database of psychology testing tools is useful alongside our other APA resources, like PsycINFO and PsycBOOKS.

Explore PsycTESTS »


More information from PsycTESTS:

PsycTESTS is a rapidly expanding database of measurement and instrumentation tools in the field of psychology. It is an authoritative source of structured information about various questionnaires, scales, assessment measures, personality tests, and rating systems, and while focused on contemporary instances of test use, has coverage that spans more than a century. PsycTESTS provides access to thousands of actual instruments, most of which are available for immediate download and use in teaching and research.

  • More than 23,000 test records
  • Over 16,000 actual instruments
  • Updated monthly
  • Coverage of tests dating back as far as 1896
  • Perfectly complements the full suite of resources from the APA


What do you think of PsycTESTS? Send any feedback to Prof. Maureen Richards, Electronic Resources Librarian.

Posted Friday, April 24, 2015 - 5:06pm

Library as study space

April 12–18 is National Library Week 2015. All kinds of libraries celebrate—government, academic, public, school, and specialized. This year’s chairperson for the week is novelist David Baldacci, (The Collectors, First FamilyThe Escape, Memory Man), and this year’s theme is Unlimited Possibilities @ Your Library. We celebrate today’s libraries; they’re books and much more. Libraries are places of creativity, places where people meet to share their experiences, places to do research, to develop a hobby or a new interest, to use the internet, to get help with resumes and test-taking, places to pursue directions you never thought of taking. Libraries offer access to the services, tools, and technology essential to the economic and cultural lives of our communities.

What have you accomplished with the help of John Jay’s library and librarians? Did you research and write your term paper? Did you print it out in the library lab? Did you access library databases from home? Did you email, text, or call in a question? Did you find a reserve reading? Is the Library your everyday place for quiet study? Did you come upon a great new idea just by ruminating or contemplating? Let us in on your library experiences by tweeting to us at @johnjaylibrary!

Posted Tuesday, April 14, 2015 - 10:46am

Rubin Museum


From the announcement emailed to the campus community: 

Last year, seven students won cash prizes of $500 to $3,000 in the John Jay-Rubin Museum Writing Competition. This year, we are giving away $7,000 in total prizes. Now YOU could win up to $3,000 for writing a winning essay!

John Jay College and the Rubin Museum of Art are happy to announce the 4th annual John Jay College-Rubin Museum of Art Writing Competition.

Want to know more? You are invited to attend on-campus informational sessions during Community Hour! Please RSVP to

  • February 23rd: Info session for students (room 620 Haaren Hall 1:45-2:35 pm)
  • March 2nd: Final info session for students (room 620 Haaren Hall 1:45-2:35 pm)

Competition rules

I. Who May Enter:

The contest is open to all undergraduate students who are in good standing, full-time or part-time, at John Jay on the final date for submission.

Exceptions: employees and affiliates of the Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation or the Rubin Museum and members of their immediate families shall be ineligible.

II. Topic of the Prize Essay

Choose a work or set of works of art from the collection of the Rubin Museum. Write an essay about the work (or those works) that explores how the piece or pieces define or express the idea of justice. As John Jay commences its 50th anniversary celebrations, it may be useful to reflect on our history as a college and a force for social change as you come up with the concept for your essay topic. Your essay may consider any of a wide range of issues, including but not limited to: justice as it relates to retribution and punishment; justice as it relates to death; justice as it relates to the possible differences between what gods and human beings consider fair; justice as it relates to violence and non-violence.

Psst... The Library has an online exhibit with helpful resources!

III. Submission & Due Date

In order to be considered an essay must be typewritten and submitted in hard copy. No e-mailed or faxed entries will be considered. The essay must be between 1000 and 3000 words long.

Each student entering an essay must submit five copies of the essay to the Office of Fellowship & Scholarship Opportunities by no later than 5:00pm on April 1st, 2015. The first copy of the essay must be accompanied by a detachable title page bearing the name of the student and the last four digits of his/her Social Security Number. The remaining pages of all copies of the submission must include the last four digits of the Social Security Number and no other identifying information. The Office of Fellowship & Scholarship Opportunities will accept submissions from February 9th through April 1st. Winning essays will be selected by April 13th, with celebration to follow at John Jay’s Research and Creativity Week (beginning on April 27th).

IV. Getting to Know the Rubin Museum of Art

Visiting the Museum is required. Last year’s winners found visits to the museum to be essential to their understanding of the collections and the piece they chose to write about for the essay. This makes sense as the museum is full of helpful staff and educators, and is in tune with our mission of “Educating for Justice.” Encourage your students to make the time to go if they hope to win.

The Rubin Museum offers free admission during regular hours for John Jay College students, faculty, and staff. The museum also has vast resources about exhibitions and Himalayan art and culture available online and on iTunesU.  As we experienced great results in terms of attendance, interest and then awareness of the museum in years past, we plan to work with our Rubin Educational Partnership staff (Laura Lombard and her team) to conduct John Jay student tours at the museum (at least two weeks advance notice for reservations) and “Get to Know the Rubin Museum” sessions on campus for students and faculty in February & March.

The Rubin Museum of Art is located at 150 West 17th Street, New York, NY 10011.

Psst... The Library has an online exhibit with helpful resources!

V.  Selection of Award Recipient

The essays will be reviewed by a Faculty and Administrator committee at John Jay, which shall then announce the winner of the Prize.The names of the winners will be published in the campus publication @John Jay and on the John Jay website. Where scheduling allows, the winners of the Prize(s) will be given an opportunity to showcase/present their work as a part of John Jay’s 2015 Research & Creativity Week.

VI. Prize

The Rubin Essay Award shall consist of a certificate, a one-year complimentary pass to the Rubin Museum, and a cash award to be underwritten by the Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation:

  • 1st prize: $3,000
  • 2nd prize: $2,000
  • 3rd prize: $1,000
  • 2 Special Mention Prizes: $500 each

Awardee’s prizes shall be used in part to cover tuition and other academic expenses. If an awardee owes tuition fees, the award amount will be used to cover those fees first. The remaining funds are disbursed to the awardee to be used at his/her discretion. (Exception: If an awardee is a graduating senior with all tuition fees paid, then full funds go to awardee for use as he/she sees fit.)

Check your email for the competition announcement for an attached guide to certain exhibits in the museum that may help you to think about its collections and prepare you to enter the writing competition. Please remember that visiting the museum is a requirement to win. The museum is full of helpful staff and educators, and is in tune with our mission of “Educating for Justice.” To support your visits to the museum and writing of the essay, the college will invite Rubin Museum educators to campus throughout February & early March during Community Hour. Look for additional emails regarding these sessions in your inbox. For now, prepare for an engaging and stimulating experience with Art and Justice!

We look forward to congratulating you when you win!

Questions? Please contact the Program Manager, Elizabeth Kaylor.

Posted Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 11:58am