Don’t Panic! Responding to Disasters in a Public Library


Choice of Friday, March 23, 1:00-4:00pm or Wednesday, March 28, 1:00-4:00pm


Urbana Free Library, the Lewis Auditorium (Ground Floor),

For PDF flyer, click here.


Rehearsing for disasters is an important and fun way to be better prepared for the unexpected when it strikes your institution. “Don’t Panic! Responding to Disasters in a Pubic Library” is a free disaster response workshop based on a workshop created by GSLIS student Jessica Lapinsky for the Smithsonian Institution. This three-hour workshop covers the basics of how to respond to emergencies affecting public library collections, with an emphasis on using FEMA's Incident Command System to organize a safe and efficient response team. Topics covered include: the most common disasters affecting public libraries, some simple salvage techniques for library material, vital records, and the importance of team work. The workshop ends with a mock disaster table top exercise.

Who Should Attend:

Open to all local library employees, no prior knowledge of disaster management required. Participants have two dates to choose from.
Workshop Instructor: Jessica Lapinsky is a student at the Graduate School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Illinois. She holds an M.S.I.S from the University at SUNY Albany, and is currently pursuing a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Preservation Administration in Archives and Special Collections. This workshop is based in part on research and a workshop created and implemented by Ms. Lapinsky at the Smithsonian Institution Archives, where she was an intern this past summer.


Registration required. Email instructor Jessica Lapinsky at to register and for additional information about this workshop.