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Nov. 21, 2013 Volume 35, No. 14

Staff member funds professional development through a Staff Advisory Council program

Deadline for submitting proposals to the Staff Advisory Council is Dec. 16

Tamara Inge has always been interested in what’s old or dirty, crusty or rusty. 

She spent five years in the preservation lab at the National Archives and Records Administration in St. Louis before returning to Columbia in 2006, where she is working toward a master’s in library science and serving on the Historic Preservation Commission for the City of Boonville, Mo.

Inge is records coordinator at the University of Missouri Research Reactor where she is part records manager and part archivist. In her management role, she keeps records as mandated by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. As the reactor’s preservationist, she maintains boxes of photographs, newspaper clippings and research papers that date back to the reactor’s 1966 opening. 

To increase her skills, Inge takes advantage of training opportunities. 

“There is a lot to be said for staying current on [archival principles and practices],” Inge said. “There are new ways to process collections, new software applications available and copyright law is always changing.” 

In September, she attended a two-day workshop at the Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies in Mount Carroll, Ill., led by the deputy director of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum. To help cover the $600 tuition and materials fee and travel costs, Inge applied for and received a Staff Development Award. Given by the Staff Advisory Council, the program annually awards $75,000 to full-time campus staff members to assist in professional and personal development through funding for conferences, workshops and short courses. 

Inge described the course as a mini preservation summer camp. For Inge, who works in isolation at MURR, it’s the perfect time to discuss best practices and get input on developing a strong archival program.

“I feel like I’m more efficient and sharper than I have been,” Inge said. 

With more knowledge of the current methods of processing and assessing a collection, Inge is already putting what she learned to use with MURR’s paper collection and is looking at the course catalogue for the Campbell Center to see what she wants to enroll in next. 

Staff Development Awards are given three times a year in January, May and September. The deadline for submitting proposals for the January funding is Dec. 16. Visit for information on the program and how to apply. 

— Kelsey Allen