Scholarship Report: Chris Beckman – ABOS Conference 2018

Event: Association of Bookmobile & Outreach Services (ABOS) Conference — Raleigh, NC — October 17-19, 2018

Attendee: Chris Beckman – Bookmobile Driver, Rochester Public Library

How does attending this event relate to your current role in your library?

The ABOS conference is held every year in a different quadrant of the country.  The gathering of library staff are strictly associated with outreach outside of the brick and mortar walls.  There are a lot of Bookmobile drivers/associates to speak with regarding all the outreach activities that I do at Rochester Public Library including homebound, deposit collection delivery to assisted living centers and daycares, and Bookmobile service in Olmsted county.  These conversations can be used during day to day services.

What was your favorite session you attended and why?

There was a session called “Bookmobile Buzz” that I keep thinking about.  The presenter is a vendor that specializes in Bookmobile request for purchases.  We used him when we designed ours at Rochester.  Generators have always been a stickler nationwide on bookmobiles because of their nature.  They run at high speeds and susceptible to dirt and road debris causing a lot of maintenance problems.  The future is close at getting rid of generators totally using cadmium and lithium ion batteries that have tons of power storage.  We are using lead batteries currently and replace them every 3 years, these [ion batteries] last 15-20 years.  Hopefully we can get by in 3 years from now to start using these!

What’s one (1) idea that you gained from the event that you plan to implement now that you’re back?

I attended a session on truck checklists before starting the route.  I am going to start using this form to see if it is better than our current checklist.

Would you recommend this event to others and why?

The conference is well organized and set up well for all staff dealing with outreach and would recommend to others.  It can give staff ideas gained from other libraries around the country that can be implemented at your library.  Face to face conversations can be priceless compared to modern day email and texting!