In Case You Missed It: OA Week 2022

Here’s a look at how ACP celebrated Open Access week, October 24 to October 28

It’s that time of year again! The last week of October had students buzzing with anticipation for a very special, once-a-year occurrence. Can you guess what it was? Hint: it’s associated with the color orange. No, it wasn’t Halloween–it was International Open Access Week! 

An Asian woman in white top and black pants holds posters in front of Robert Frost Library. A banner with the words Open Access Week hangs behind her.

This is a week dedicated to informing people about new, more accessible ways of sharing knowledge and scholarship. Take a look at how we celebrated OA Week here at Amherst College Press.

Table at the Science Center

The theme for this year’s OA Week was “Open for Climate Justice.” In honor of the theme, we set up a table in the Science Center to lure stressed-out STEM students with Halloween candy and cookies as they rushed from class to class. 

Candy and posters decorated with lettering and image cutouts sit on a table with a purple tablecloth and the words Amherst College Science Center on it. A Black woman and an Asian woman wearing masks stand people stand behind it.

But it wasn’t Halloween quite yet, so they weren’t getting the treats that easily. First, they had to answer one of five trivia questions associated with OA week, like these ones shown in the photo above:

  • What is the average cost of publishing a monograph?
  • Which OA publishing model is more ideal: gold or platinum?
    • Bonus: Which funding model is used at ACP? 

 For the question shown below, we had people put candy corn in the jar that was in front of what they guessed the answer was. The question was: “What percentage of Frost’s budget goes to subscriptions? A. 10-40%, B. 41-70%, or C. 71-100%?” Can you guess which option was correct?

A tri-fold poster with the words What Percentage of Frosts Budget Goes to Subscriptions in an orange circle sits on a purple table with a bowl of candy corn and candy in front of it.

Answer: it’s C.--a whopping 75% of Frost’s budget goes to subscriptions.

All in all, we had a great time talking to everyone who stopped by the table and answering your questions about OA. It was a lot of fun, and we’re grateful to everyone who dropped by.

Book Display in Frost 

Leading up to the main event in the Science Center, we also set up a book display in Frost. For two weeks starting on October 20, we highlighted some open access books that were published by Amherst College Press. We chose to display 13 of our newest books, featuring works like Radical Roots: Public History and A Tradition of Social Justice Activism edited by Denise D. Meringolo, and Jamon and Halal: Lessons in Tolerance from Rural Andalucia by Christina Civantos. We think it turned out beautifully! And we wanted to say a big thank you to Frost librarian Blake Doherty – we couldn’t have set up this book display without you.

Books in stands and two posters with the words Amherst College Press sit on a table in front of stairs.

CHI Salon Talk 

On Wednesday, October 26 ACP co-hosted its annual CHI Salon discussion in honor of OA week. Presidential Scholar Karma Chávez sat down with Amherst College Press authors Megan Jeanette Myers and Edward Paulino and ACP director Beth Bouloukos to discuss open access, collaborative scholarship, and community activism. Myers and Paulino edited the book The Border of Lights Reader: Bearing Witness to Genocide in the Dominican Republic, and they spoke of their experiences working with local activist organizations and the importance of cross-border and collaborative histories. As a group, they also provided insight into the relationship between scholarship and tenure and the importance of open access across all institutions.

Overall, Open Access Week was a smashing success–thank you to everyone who made it so! 

BIOS:

Katie McMaye (‘23)

Katie is a senior English and Psychology double major from California. Over her years here at Amherst, she has deepened her love for creative writing and literature. On a typical day, you might find her listening to some form of indie music, watching Youtube video essays on the most obscure topics, or goofing off–I mean, studying–with friends in Frost. 

Evelyn Chi (‘25)

Evelyn is a sophomore English and Sexuality, Women’s, and Gender Studies double major from Los Angeles. In her studies, she is particularly interested in postcolonial literature, Asian American writers, and intersectional identities. Outside of class, she sings in the Choral Society, and she loves baking cookies, taking long walks during sunset, and drinking good matcha lattes.