Now in its fifteenth consecutive year at UBC, the Food For Fines campaign waives $2 in Library fines for every food item donated, to a maximum of $30. The program began as a joint initiative to support disadvantaged members of the community, and has become an integral source of the AMS Food Bank’s food reserves to support UBC students in need.

Non-perishable food items were collected at circulation desks and then distributed to the AMS Food Bank.

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s campaign!

Please note members of the community are welcome to donate goods year-round at the AMS Food Bank and Greater Vancouver Food Bank. For more information visit the AMS Food Bank website.

If you’ve ventured out to visit the UBC Library Map Collection in Walter C. Koerner Library recently, you will likely have met Evan Thornberry, who joined UBC Library as the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Librarian in July.

In his day-to-day, Evan answers reference questions, plans workshops, and gives class presentations, in an effort to provide support to researchers and students across campus in their spatial research. “GIS Librarians are the face of the library for all kinds of place-based or spatial research,” he explains. “I work most closely with our GIS Analyst, Paul Lesack. We tackle all of the map and GIS-related reference.”

Given UBC Library’s extensive print map and atlas collection, Evan also gets to handle plenty of paper maps. “UBC has done a really good job of retaining their paper map collection, and a lot of libraries haven’t done that. It’s likely going to grow in value to researchers,” he says.

These days, spatial research isn’t limited to the forestry and geography departments, with whom Evan often collaborates. Advances in technology have made map data more accessible. “Researchers in other departments are interested in mapping because they’re starting to see more maps out there available in digital format. They’re getting ideas about how to apply a spatial component to their research.”

To mark this transition, Evan started the GIS speaker series, Visualizing the World, which hosts talks by selected cartographers and other geo-spatial researchers. The first talk, which was held in October, featured cartographer Anton Thomas, who specializes in hand-drawn maps, while the second showcased research from medical geographer Emily Acheson, currently enrolled as a PhD candidate in Geography at UBC. “Anything can be analyzed in a spatial sense. I want the speakers’ series to illustrate that,” says Evan.

Talking about his own geographic moves, Evan relocated to Vancouver from Boston, where he looked after Boston Public library’s map collection through the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center, a nonprofit organization. However, as a Western Washington University graduate, he isn’t new to the West Coast and is happy to be back in a city with a vibrant bicycling culture. He’s also started brushing up on his illustration skills: “I come from a family of artists, and I think making digitally hand-drawn maps would be fun. I appreciate the artistic value that cartographers give to their product.”

Learn more about the UBC Library Map Collection by visiting the GIS Lab at Koerner Library  

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