Library News

Snell Library Renovation Continues; 4th Floor Closed

Work on the Snell Library renovation continued in earnest over the winter break. With construction moving to the 4th floor, furniture was removed from that area and reorganize on the 3rd floor. Temporary walls were also installed on the 3rd floor to cut down on construction noises throughout the building.

While work is being completed on the 4th floor, please note that that level will be closed for the spring 2023 semester. Library users should relocate to the first three floors of the library or visit the Northeastern University Spaces page to find other suitable areas on the Boston campus. The Curry Student Center, Marino Center, 300 Mass. Ave, and most academic buildings have open seating available for study purposes.

The basement level also remains closed for the semester.

The Snell Library renovation project is a top-to-bottom redesign that will provide:

Improved study space, including:

  • a major increase in seating to accommodate both quiet and group study
  • bookable group study rooms on several floors
  • single-person pods for phone and video calls
  • new study space on the lower level
  • a larger, enhanced graduate study room
  • improved acoustic dampening throughout the building

Creative and collaborative opportunities, such as:

  • an expanded creative and design production zone on the 2nd floor
  • a research-focused area that brings together advanced digital scholarship projects from across the university
  • a new café and large event space open to the public on the 1st floor

Improved access to our collections and services, including:

  • more space to highlight our unique archives and special collections
  • on-site access to high-use books
  • easier access to library and information technology services

Compelling views, inside and out:

  • welcoming, light-filled areas with panoramas of the campus
  • a glass-enclosed central staircase showcasing newly opened areas of the library
  • a wrap-around glass façade on the 1st floor with new, larger entrances

Please follow us on Instagram and Twitter or visit our website for up-to-date construction and renovation news.

Remembering Christine McVie: An Interview with Larry Katz

Christine McVie standing in front of a microphone holding three maracas. She has long blonde hair and is wearing black.
Christine McVie
(Photo by Raph_PH, CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons)

Christine McVie, long-time keyboardist for the band Fleetwood Mac, died at the age of 79 on November 30, 2022. 

Records of McVie’s life and legacy can be found in the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections’ Larry Katz Tapes, a collection of audio recordings between Boston arts and music writer Larry Katz and numerous musicians from 1980 to 2005. 

This interview with McVie took place shortly after Fleetwood Mac’s fourteenth studio album Tango in the Night was released in 1987, which marked the band’s triumphant return after a five-year hiatus. This hiatus saw the band’s members pursuing solo careers in music, but they ultimately came back together to create more music for, as McVie calls it, “the entity called Fleetwood Mac.” 

Listeners of Katz’s interview can come to understand McVie’s view of the band as something larger than herself or the other members in it. “The end result to me is always magical,” McVie states when asked about the “magic” that Fleetwood Mac imbues on its listeners. Even though she admits that the process can be tedious at times, she also reflects on the “mystical” feeling of listening to a record she could spend an entire year working on. 

In this way, McVie describes the creation of an album “like a painting.” “[We] decide what colors we need, what depth we need, what kind of emotion we need… We sketch it in and fill in the colors as we go along.” 

When asked about her future, McVie states, “I don’t see any reason to stop…I don’t see any reason at all–it’s my life. I don’t know what else I’d do if I didn’t write songs or sing.” 

Source: “Interview with Christine McVie, English singer, songwriter, keyboardist and member of band Fleetwood Mac.” Larry Katz Tapes. University Libraries Archives and Special Collections Department.

Mellon Foundation Awards $505,000 Grant to Extend Funding for the Boston Research Center

Boston Research Center logo

The Northeastern University Library has received a $505,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation to support the final developmental phase of the Boston Research Center. This grant builds upon two previous grants from the Mellon Foundation — which helped Northeastern launch the BRC with a $200,000 planning grant in 2017, and a $650,000 implementation grant in 2019.

“We deeply appreciate the Mellon Foundation’s ongoing support of the Boston Research Center and our library’s efforts to work with the communities that surround Northeastern’s campuses,” said Dan Cohen, Dean of the Northeastern University Library. “Along with our partners in the Boston area, we have learned a great deal about how to express our neighbors’ stories, culture, and history.”

The BRC is dedicated to bringing Boston’s neighborhood and community histories to light through the creation and use of new technologies, allowing Boston residents to share underrepresented stories from city’s past. In its most recent phase, the BRC has focused on specific community projects to help share the stories of these neighborhoods and organizations. The Mellon Foundation’s grant will help develop tools and workflows to curate and disseminate these collections, making them accessible to the community and easy to build upon in future work.

By gathering documents, images, and personal narratives, and creating metadata for community resources, the BRC ensures that everything from public art and oral histories to important neighborhood sights are recorded to help disseminate area history and culture. Recent projects include:

  • The Harriet Tubman Memory House Project, which contains photographs, oral histories, flyers, architectural plans, and other digitized materials that tell the interwoven stories of Boston’s South End neighborhood, the United South End Settlements and Harriet Tubman House, gentrification, community action, and resilience.
  • The East Boston Memoir Project, which contains photographs, oral histories, newspapers, and other digitized materials that make available the history of East Boston.
  • The Neighborhood Public Art Project, which contains an interactive map documenting Boston’s rich and diverse history of public art.
  • The Chinatown Collections Project, which contains historical records documenting the people, organizations, and historical collections of Boston’s Chinatown in a bilingual database.

Located in Northeastern University Library, the BRC is managed by the Archives and Special Collections and the Digital Scholarship Group. It works in collaboration with the Boston Public Library along with many community organizations and individuals.

Reading Recommendations for Native American Heritage Month

American Indian activists began working to establish a national “American Indian Day” in the early 20th century. Native advocates like Arthur C. Parker, Sherman Coolidge, and Red Fox James believed that a national day of observation would commemorate the Indigenous community’s history and culture. Various individual states established “American Indian Days” between 1915 and 1920; more recently, some states—including Massachusetts—have changed the second Monday of October, formerly “Columbus Day,” to “Indigenous Peoples’ Day,” to focus on the stories of the Native peoples who existed in these lands before European contact, rather than on the oppressors, and to acknowledge the United States’ complicated legacy of colonialism and white violence. In 1990, President George H.W. Bush declared November National Native American Heritage Month (also known as “American Indian Heritage Month”).

Throughout November, visit the Hub on the first floor of Snell Library to explore our print collections featuring Native and Indigenous authors. If you’re not in Boston (and even if you are), make sure to check out the e-books and audiobooks on our virtual bookshelf! Here are some recommended reads from our collection:

Cover of The Only Good Indians


The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones (2020): If Halloween didn’t fulfill your cravings for creepy, check out the book Entertainment Weekly called “one of 2020’s buzziest horror novels.” The dark past of four American Indian families leave them terrorized by a vindictive entity determined to make them pay for their sins.



Cover of Split Tooth


Split Tooth by Tanya Tagaq (2018): This award-winning novel by Inuk throat singer and artist Tanya Tagaq traces a girlhood in 1970s Nunavut, blending myth and memoir. The audiobook is read by Tagaq herself.




Cover of Poet Warrior


Poet Warrior by Joy Harjo (2021): Three-time United States Poet Laureate Joy Harjo writes about her ancestry and the tribal stories and traditions that shaped her. She meditates on grief, loss, ritual, memory, music, joy and everything in between.




Cover of This Land is Their Land


This Land is Their Land: The Wompanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving by David J. Silverman (2019): Historian David J. Silverman unmasks the truth behind the simple, cheerful Thanksgiving story still taught in kindergartens around the country, and places the Wampanoag tribe at the center of the narrative.

New policies will impact research data sharing and scholarly communication

We’re monitoring recent changes to policy and legislation that will likely impact the work of Northeastern University faculty, staff, and student researchers. Read on for a brief overview of three of these impending changes, in order of their expected implementation dates.

NIH (National Institutes of Health) Policy for Data Management and Sharing

What is it? The NIH’s new policy on data management and sharing aims to improve the reproducibility and reliability of NIH-funded work by broadening access to research uploads.

When will the changes take place? January 25, 2023

How might this impact researchers?

  • DMSPs: All NIH proposals will require the submission of a data management and sharing plan (DMSP). Previously, only NIH proposals above a certain funding threshold required a DMSP.
  • Data availability: Research data is expected to be made accessible “as soon as possible, and no later than the time of an associated publication, or the end of the award/support period, whichever comes first.” Further, the new policy strongly encourages the use of established repositories to share data.
  • Costs: Reasonable costs related to data management and sharing may be included in NIH budget requests.

Additional resources:

CHIPS and Science Act

What is it? The CHIPS and Science Act is primarily related to semiconductor manufacturing and the STEM workforce pipeline, but also includes some open science directives.

When will the changes take place? One year following enactment (circa September 2023)

How might this impact researchers? Once the act takes effect, applications for National Science Foundation awards will be required to include machine-readable data management plans (DMPs). We do not anticipate that this will significantly impact researchers, as most DMPs are already machine-readable unless they include tables or charts. This requirement will enable more seamless information sharing between systems used by institutions and funders, ultimately reducing the paperwork burden for researchers.

Additional resource:

White House Office of Science & Technology Memorandum: Ensuring Free, Immediate, and Equitable Access to Federally Funded Research

What is it? OSTP’s new memorandum (aka the Nelson memo) builds upon OSTP’s 2013 Holdren memo. The new memo will make research funded by all U.S. government agencies immediately available to the public. This eliminates the current optional 1-year embargo period and applies to both publications and the data underlying peer-reviewed research. Under the new Nelson memo, the definition of publications is widened beyond articles to also apply to peer-reviewed book chapters and conference proceedings.

When will the changes take place? The Nelson memo will first impact funding agencies, which will be expected to fully implement their public access and data sharing plans by the end of 2025.

How might this impact researchers? Once the memo goes into effect, researchers and members of the public will benefit from broader, more immediate access to federally funded research results. The memo urges the use of persistent identifiers (PIDs) to unambiguously identify authors, affiliations, funders, and more, so this would be a great time to acquire and begin using an ORCID iD if you don’t already have one. The U.S. government has also signaled interest in examining current academic incentive structures to better recognize institutions and researchers for their support of public access to research.

Additional resources:

The library is working with campus partners, including Research Administration and Research Computing, to develop guidance and resources to assist researchers as they navigate these changes. As always, if you need assistance with a data management or data management and sharing plan, or if you’re searching for a secure, permanent home for your research outputs, we’re here to help!