MA (Performance Studies, Northwestern)
What are your main duties at your library?
I oversee management of the library staff and faculty. I manage the budget and make sure we are spending our funds wisely. Additionally I’m liaison to six academic departments including our freshman composition classes, and I still teach many IL sessions for those departments, which has been a big challenge in our new online world. Along with the other librarians, I’m currently planning for and strategizing how we reopen the library in a post-COVID-19 world.
What do you like best about your job?
I love teaching and developing new information literacy instruction. I actually somewhat enjoy assessment. I also love helping students find things—the hunt is fun!
What are you working on now that you’re excited about?
I don’t know if “excited” is the right word, but the planning and problem solving around running a library during a global pandemic is certainly challenging. We need to revamp our IL instruction for our First Year Seminar, and that’s a fun challenge.
Why did you decide to become a librarian?
Honestly? It was a way of staying in academia after it became obvious the adjunct speech faculty thing wasn’t working out long-term. But when I think about it I actually have been a happy denizen of libraries my entire life. Even in my first grad program I was always more interested in finding things than in writing things.
What does librarianship mean to you?
I feel these days like we are front-line troops in the fight for truth. Our current media environment is so full of noise and it’s so important that we hold a line for accurate, truthful information, as well as teaching students those critical thinking skills to cut through the noise.
What do you think is the most important challenge or opportunity for libraries going forward?
Funding. The pandemic will play havoc with institutional budgets across the spectrum. Keeping libraries open may become challenging, much less growth.
What are you reading, watching, or listening to right now?
I’ve been reading Kathleen Ernst’s Chloe Ellefson murder mystery series. Just the right amount of intriguing fluff. I’ve also been binging 2000’s TV shows I didn’t get to watch back in the day (when I had small kids and a smaller budget), like The Wire and Six Feet Under.
What are your hobbies?
I am a proud member of the Society for Creative Anachronism, a medieval history reenactment group.
Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
I have two Great Danes, Anabella who is 7 and Luna who is 18 months.
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