Black Lives Matter

The Queens College Libraries declare our opposition to the racial terror and state-sanctioned violence that shape the lives of Black people in the United States. Black lives matter. We share the sorrow and rage of our community and stand in solidarity with protests against police brutality. We recognize and condemn these acts and other forms of racial violence, bigotry, and institutional racism, and hold ourselves accountable to work against the policing of CUNY and its libraries. This statement affirms our commitment to anti-racist practice and our pledge to use our skills and resources to advance the production of knowledge for social justice.

The Queens College community has a long history of supporting the movement for racial justice. In fact, the iconic Rosenthal Library clock tower is dedicated to the memory of three civil rights workers–Michael Schwerner, James Chaney, and Queens College student Andrew Goodman–who were murdered while helping organize voter registration efforts in Mississippi during the Summer of 1964. As the struggle for racial justice continues, we honor this history and stand against police brutality and white supremacy. 

This statement is adapted from the CUNY Graduate Center’s statement on Black Lives Matter, and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license

Celebrating Diversity: Double Feature!

Welcome to Celebrating Diversity, a library newsletter series showcasing books and resources that tell the stories of the many cultural and ethnic groups that call Queens home. Whether you are preparing an academic assignment or looking for your next great read, we hope you find inspiration in the history and culture of our colleagues, friends, and neighbors in “The World’s Borough.”

May is both Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month and Jewish American Heritage Month. Professors Q. Joan Xu and Izabella Taler, our expert subject librarians in these areas, are kicking off this series with featured ebooks and other resources from their Research Guides.

Access to ebooks and most other featured resources requires a valid QCard: please contact us if you have any issues logging in.

Asian/Pacific American and Jewish American Heritage Month

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month was first declared in 1978. The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants (

Jewish American Heritage Month’s history is more recent, as it was declared by President George W. Bush in 2006.

Two ebooks examine the intersections of Asian American and Jewish American experiences and are highly recommended: 

Modeling Citizenship: Jewish and Asian American Writing, by Cathy Schlund-Vials
Temple University Press, 2011





JewAsian : Race, Religion, and Identity for America’s Newest Jews, by H.K. Kim and N.S. Leavitt
University of Nebraska Press, 2016



Asian/pacific american heritage Resources

Professor Xu’s Asian Studies Research Guide has a comprehensive array of ebooks and websites. Here are some highlights:

Featured Websites

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month: this guide, produced by the National Park Service, Library of Congress, and other federal partners, has extensive history and heritage information, and a special portal for educators.

APA Heritage: San Francisco’s official celebration site lets you virtually explore Asian food, literature, films, museums, and performances.

Featured ebooks

The Color of Success, by Ellen D. Wu
Princeton University Press, 2013

Negotiating Tradition, Becoming American, by Rifat Anjum Salam
LFB Scholarly Publishing LLC, 2013

Scent of Apples, edited by Bienvenido N. Santos
University of Washington Press, 2015

Jewish American heritage Resources

Research Services Librarian Izabella Taler, liaison for Jewish Studies, presents highlights from the Jewish Studies Research Guide.

Featured E-Resources and Websites

The Association of Jewish Libraries leads one to extensive information related to Jewish Americans.

Jewish Review of Books includes much more than just reviews. It also offers articles about “religion, literature, culture, and politics, as well as fiction, poetry, and the arts.”

Ethnic NewsWatch is another great resource-you will find articles published in journals and newspapers including  American Jewish History, Jerusalem Post, Jewish Chronicle, and Jewish Film & New Media.

Featured ebooks

American Jewish History, edited by Gary Phillip Zola and Marc Dollinger
Brandeis University Press, 2014.

Recommended for an overview of the American Jewish historical experience, and for students looking for primary source materials.




New York’s Yiddish Theater: From the Bowery to Broadway, edited by Edna Nahshon
Columbia University Press, 2016

Explore the historic role of American Jews in the entertainment industry. An excellent source for students interested in performing arts, New York City history, and the evolution of theater.


 Typically Jewish, by Nancy Kalikow Maxwell
The Jewish Publication Society, 2019

A humorous romp through Jewish American culture and history, organized into chapters like “Worrying,” “Kvelling,” “Dying,” and “Noshing.”


3D Printing for Health Workers: A Makerspace Story

Visitors to the QC Makerspace are often drawn to the ingenious objects created on its 3D printers. For Lillian C., a Makerspace Assistant and QC undergraduate, learning to 3D print in the Makerspace has had real-world applications most of us would never have thought of before COVID-19. Lillian used her 3-D printing skills to create personal protective equipment for Mt. Sinai Hospital, where her stepmother is a surgeon.

Lillian detailed that experience in an April Makerspace blog, and I caught up with her recently to learn more about 3D printing, what Makers are doing to help fight COVID-19, and get her tips for students who want to get involved with the QC Makerspace.

Hi Lillian, thanks again for doing this! It’s been about a month since you first wrote about 3D printing PPE. What is the PPE situation like now at your stepmom’s hospital?

When we first started making the PPEs, the hospital was in critical condition. Thankfully, they finally have enough PPE to sustain themselves and even some extras.

You and your friend began making these after New York City, and CUNY, had largely shut down for social distancing. Without access to the Makerspace, what equipment did you use? 

We used a couple different printers we had access to at home: the Ender 3 Pro 3D printer and Monoprice Voxel 3D printer. You can purchase the Ender 3 Pro from any electronics store for roughly $220. You have to assemble it yourself, but it’s one of the cheapest 3D printers. The Voxel printer is around $350 and it is very simple to use. 

What are the PPEs made of?

We made these out of generic PLA filament, which you can find anywhere online.

How many protective face shields have you made? Are you making other items? 

We’ve made around 100 face shields, and only face shields, although I do wish we could have made a greater variety.

Are you still making face shields?

We stopped production of PPE because the hospitals have regained supply. If we are notified of the need for PPE, we will be able to quickly make more face masks. 

Were you able to speed up production as you learned more?

100% yes! As we kept printing, we kept finding better files that were easier to print and took less time, in order to print the maximum amount.

How much faster are we talking?

When we started, it took about 6 hours to produce one mask. We eventually got that down to about one hour.

That’s amazing! How did you do it?

The 3D printer company Prusa has an online forum, and that’s where we got the first mask design we used. Using the Ender 3 Pro printer, each mask took about 6 hours. We hoped to get that time down, so we started looking for new designs, new STL files.

The acronyms are really flying now, Lillian. Can you explain to a newbie what STL files are?

Sure! STL stands for “Standard Tessellation Language”. The main purpose of the STL file format is to encode the surface geometry of a 3D object. It encodes this information using a simple concept called “tessellation.”

So STL is a file format that can be ‘read’ by 3D printers?

Yes. Once you have a STL file, it’s ready to be sliced using a 3D printer specific slicer. Every different type of auto CADing software generates the same STL file.

And you found another STL file eventually, one that was faster to print?

Yes, we looked online and found a viable STL file that met two important criteria: it produced good, sturdy masks, with a fast print time. It took the Ender 3 Pro 2 hours to print the new design, and  the Voxel printer did it in about 1 hour. The Voxel was faster because it printed at a higher rate. 

How did your experience in the QC Makerspace help you to get this project done?

The Makerspace allowed me to gain experience using a printer before I had one of my own. 

What is the Makerspace doing to support students now? 

Currently, Head of Makerspace Nick Normal and I are working towards having a fleshed out LibGuide for everything pertaining to the Makerspace. With this guide, students who want to come in and work on something will arrive with the knowledge they need to use whatever machine they want to.

What do you think the role of the Makerspace will be when students can return to campus?

I think the Makerspace will have a similar role as last year, where students can go through orientation and then gain access to basically make anything they want. The students just have to be willing to do the research and put in the time to learn to use the machines they’re interested in.

Are there resources you’d recommend for other makers who are interested in supporting our health care workers? 

3D Universe has a lot of new posts with tutorials on how to make different kinds of face masks. They have public STL files you may download and use, like this one:

Some other good sources for STL files are and

Besides PPE, what other maker projects are you working on now? 

We are designing and planning on building “Fish and the Furious”. It will be a fish tank planted on a chassis with wheels equipped with distance sensors and a camera. The camera will detect where the fish is inside the tank and relative the center of the tank, it will determine which way the tank will drive. This will essentially allow the fish to travel in a room autonomously!

There will be sensors all around the tank allowing it to safely travel and not drive into a wall or into a person. We will be using Raspberry PI, Arduinos, OpenCV, Ultrasonic sensors, Motors, a lot of servos, and a lot of other technologies. Our slogan is “Giving the fish the freedom to travel on land”

That’s awesome! I have one last question for you: how do you think students can benefit from getting involved with the Makerspace when campus reopens? What’s unique about it compared to learning in regular classes?

I think students can benefit from getting involved because by picking up the knowledge obtained from learning how to create things, they learn how to come up with creative ways to solve problems. It’s unique because unlike regular classes, it’s a hands-on way of learning. 





Faculty Workshop: Open Educational Resources

All Queens College faculty are invited to an Introduction to Open Educational Resources workshop on Friday, May 22, from 2-3:30PM. The event will be hosted on Google Meet.

Teaching with Open Educational Resources (OER) and zero-textbook-cost (ZTC) materials makes college more affordable. Especially in the current economic climate, high textbook costs can make it difficult for CUNY students to meet their potential: students report failing or dropping classes because they can’t afford the textbook, or going into debt or going without basic necessities to buy expensive books. This workshop will present concrete strategies you can use to make your course more affordable and accessible. 

Please contact Jeremy Czerw, Outreach Communication Librarian, with any questions:


Culture Watch: Recommendations from QC Libraries (May 2020)

We are sharing our recommendations of great cultural events to experience in the weeks ahead.

Want more recommendations? Follow us on Instagram and Twitter!

Parks & Nature
Theater & Dance
  • Saturday, May 9 and Sunday, May 10 at 11AM: Lincoln Center’s Weekly Ballet Break is inspired by Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Led by New York City Ballet dancer Ralph Ippolito, this will be great for young ones!
  • Monday, May 11 at 5:30PM: Lincoln Center brings the San Francisco Ballet to our homes in a performance of Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet.
  • Thursday, May 21 at 7:30PM: The Metropolitan Opera will be releasing Giacomo Puccini’s Turandot.
  • Thursday, May 21: The Australian Dance Theatre releases Microfilm as part of their ADAPT program. You can sign up to be invited to the whole program.
  • Friday, May 22 at 7:30PM: The Metropolitan Opera presents Mozart’s classic comedic opera, Don Giovanni.
  • Wednesday, May 27 at 5PM: NYC Ballet’s Wendy Whelan takes audiences of all ages and levels through classic repertoire. See it on the NYCB Instagram.
  • Streaming: Alfred Molina stars as Mark Rothko in Red, a dramatization of creating the murals for New York’s Four Seasons Hotel. Available until May 27th.
  • Streaming: Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, recorded during Shakespeare in the Park 2019. Available through May 27th.
  • Streaming: Each evening, beginning at 7:30PM, The Metropolitan Opera presents a free encore performance from its Live in HD series.
Poetry & Literature
Museums, History, and Community

Culture Watch is compiled by Michael Deering with the assistance of QC Libraries faculty and staff.








Culture Watch: Recommendations from QC Libraries (Apr. 2020)

Is your Netflix queue looking a little picked over? Not sure where you’ll find the next concert, play, or exhibit to inspire you? We have you covered! Here are some cultural recommendations, selected by QC librarian Leila Walker.

Finally, a personal recommendation I found (promptly disappearing down an internet rabbit hole), while compiling this post:

  • Contagious Cities Cultural Initiative. To understand the current pandemic in a broader historical context, spend some time with the Center for the Humanities’s revisiting of this 2018-2019 project, which addressed the topic of infectious disease through a variety of cultural programming. New York institutions involved in the project include the CUNY Graduate Center, The New York Public Library, and the Museum of the City of New York.

Wishing you enjoyable, incisive listening, viewing, and reading!

Queens Memory COVID-19 Project

This borough-wide archiving campaign, initiated by Queens College Library and Queens Public Library, will collect first person stories and documentation of life in the epicenter of the pandemic. The public can submit testimony, photographs, and documents through this site, powered by our tech partner, the Urban Archive.

It will become a permanent archive, open to researchers.

In addition to collaborating on the borough-wide outreach campaign, archivists at the Rosenthal Library are conducting long-form interviews with Queens College faculty, staff, and students, to ensure that our unique perspectives are recorded. For more information or to get involved, contact Queens Memory Outreach Coordinator Lori Wallach at


How We’re Working Now

We still love print materials, too.

As you may know, library staff are working remotely, just like our students and colleagues throughout QC. We’ve been improving our digital presence, connecting with classes, and supporting student and faculty research. And at the end of each day, we’re browsing our shelves at home, looking for distraction, solace, and inspiration through books. Perhaps some of you are, too. We’re excited to have this newsletter to share what’s going on in our work, and hope you enjoy this peek at what our staffers might read or listen to next.

Can you spot the library book? Someone tell our Chief to get that returned!

We’ll use this newsletter to remind all our users of the various ways the library can help. Our new FAQ page puts answers you’re looking for in one place, along with all the avenues for asking us questions online.

We have connected with so many of you through our Instagram posts, showing off our pet coworkers (so many good girls and boys!) and sharing important updates as our services continue to change and new resource become available. We will continue to update you there, on Twitter, and here on our website.

Our super-organized Head of Makerspace keeps a pretty tidy bookshelf at home, too.

This is a confusing and stressful time for all members of the QC community, but we feel very proud of our students, faculty, and staff for all of their hard work and perseverance this semester. We hope you stay in touch with us and let us know what we can do to best support your teaching, learning, and scholarship.


Library Support for Off-site Teaching and Learning

The Queens College Library would like to share some tips for remote access to many of our resources and services. The full guide to our services and other tools for supporting remote research is available here: