Education

Education
Aug 2009 - Aug 2010

Masters of Science

University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign

Recipient of the Illinois State Library Training Grant for The Master of Library and Information Science (2009)

Completed Courses:

Adult Public Services (LIS 510) Technical Services Functions (LIS 578) Web Design and Construction for Organizations (LIS 590LW)

Community Informatics (LIS 518)Reference and Information Services (LIS 504)Administration and Management of Libraries and Information Centers (LIS 505)Information Services Marketing (LIS 590ISM)

Information Organization and Access (LIS 501)

Libraries, Information, and Society (LIS 502)

Administration and Use of Archival Materials (LIS 581)Rare Books and Special Collections Librarianship (LIS 590RB)

Community Archives (LIS 590)

2005 - 2009

Bachelor of Arts

Oberlin College

Recipient of the Comfort Starr Award for Excellence in Anthropology (2009)

While at Oberlin, I joined the staff of the Plum Creek Review, Oberlin's oldest literary magazine. As the Layout Editor (2006-2008) of this magazine, I strengthened my design skills, taught myself the Adobe Indesign software, and gained training experience. As the Co-Editor (2008-2009) of this magazine, I gained leadership, programming, marketing, and budgeting experience.

Work History

Work History
Jan 2010 - Present

Reference Volunteer

Internet Public Library

Volunteering with the ipl2 has allowed me to gain more structured experience with providing email-based reference service. I have had the opportunity to correspond with individuals of all ages from as far away as South Africa.

Oct 2009 - Present

Computer Lab Volunteer

The John M. Garth Adult Education Center

I volunteered at the Urbana Adult Education Center as part of my Community Informatics coursework. While there I provided computer literacy instruction to mostly elderly individuals. This experience was extremely rewarding because many of the students were in the very beginning stages of learning about computers. I was able to help people learn to use a mouse, set up an email account and write and receive their first emails, and learn how to find an online newspaper in their native language.

Jan 2009 - Present

Manuscripts and Conservation Intern

Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library

My duties during this internship included:

  • Performing research on manuscripts acquisitions using genealogy databases
  • Handling Manuscripts Department reference requests
  • Conducting conservation treatments
Jan 2007 - Present

Curatorial Intern

Museum of Funeral Customs

My duties during this internship included:

  • Assisting curator with preservation, cleaning, and cataloging of printed materials and objects in PastPerfect software
Aug 2010 - Present

Adult Services Volunteer

Champaign Public Library

As a volunteer at Champaign Public Library, I have the opportunity to:

  • Perform collection development and maintenance tasks, including pulling damaged books and researching their circulation history, and determining whether donated materials should be added to the collection
  • Assist with programming for local middle school students
  • Update Library Facebook pages with new book announcements
  • Help train new volunteers
Sep 2010 - Present

Technology Volunteer

Urbana Free Library
  • Assist patrons with their technology needs, including establishing email and social media accounts, using Microsoft Office Suite, and troubleshooting problems
Aug 2009 - Jun 2010

Information and Access Services Graduate Intern

University of Illinois Springfield, Brookens Library

This internship allowed me to develop experience in planning and delivering information literacy sessions, providing reference service, marketing the collection through displays and booklists, and providing a range of online services for distance learners and others. I worked both independently and collaboratively during this internship. My responsibilities included:

  • Providing in-person, email, telephone, and chat reference services in an academic library serving 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students, 200 faculty, and community members
  • Developing and maintaining the Management Information Systems subject guide and 20 general reference guides using the LibGuides publishing software
  • Teaching information literacy sessions to groups of 10-25 local high school students
  • Collaborating on web-based library research tutorials
  • Assisting with the creation of bulletin board and book displays on a monthly basis to educate patrons about national observances and the library's collection
  • Participating in the implementation of social media applications
Sep 2006 - May 2009

Circulation Student Assistant

Oberlin College Library

While earning my undergraduate degree, I worked as a circulation student assistant at my college library. This experience served as my introduction to the behind-the-scenes work of an academic library and led me to library school. I gained a strong appreciation for how important the mundane tasks are to the functioning of a library. I knew that no matter what I was doing, I was helping my fellow students and my professors access the information they needed more easily. My duties at Oberlin included:

  • Shelving books, shelf-reading, and processing 50 books daily for interlibrary loan
  • Charging books using Innovative Interfaces ILS and answering patron questions
Oct 2008 - May 2009

Oral History/Cataloging Volunteer

Oberlin Heritage Center

My duties at the Oberlin Heritage Center included:

  • Collaborating with the Executive Director to research and write a grant to fund operating expenses as part of Grant Proposal & Report Writing coursework. This process taught me the complexities of the grant-writing process and proven methods for meeting the expectations of granting agencies.
  • Cataloged Oberlin Oral History interviews using PastPerfect software. Through this ongoing project I learned about the importance of controlled vocabulary and the power of local history.

Summary

I am a recent MLIS recipient who is seeking meaningful professional work in the library world. I truly enjoy interacting with patrons, and would love a position that allows me to use my communication and listening skills on a daily basis. Beyond this, however, I am truly open to whatever wonderful opportunities I can find! Public libraries, academic libraries, and archives all interest me. Although I currently live in Champaign, IL, I am absolutely willing to move anywhere for the right position. When asked where I want to be professionally in 15 or 20 years, I feel that I cannot provide a satisfactorily concrete answer. With the volatile nature of information, and the resultant changes in patron's needs and expectations, there are simply too many variables for me to feel comfortable envisioning my future professional self beyond the fact that I always want to be in a position to help people meet their educational and personal information needs. In the near future, however, I want to be in a position that allows me to wear a variety of hats: from reference librarian to instructional librarian, marketing specialist to emerging technologies librarian, collection developer to programming librarian. Pursuing many different initiatives and interests at one time keeps me up-to-date and enthusiastic and, ultimately, makes me a much better resource for my patrons.

Non-Library Experience

I developed strong customer service, confrontation negotiation, and general communication skills while working as a barista at the Trout Lily Café and as a student assistant at the Oberlin College Philips Gymnasium.

Technology Skills

Databases: EBSCOhost, LexisNexis, ProQuest, Gale, FirstSearch, JSTOR, Alexander Street

   Press, Web of Knowledge, and many more

Web 2.0: Meebo, LibraryH3lp, Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, wikis, Delicious, TechSmith's

  Camtasia Studio, LibraryThing, Shelfari

Computer Applications: Microsoft Office, OpenOffice, PastPerfect, Adobe InDesign

Web Design: Basic (X)HTML and CSS, LibGuides, SeaMonkey

Integrated Library Systems: Familiarity with Innovative Interfaces and Ex Libris Voyager

Professional Development Activities

I fully understand that my MLIS is only the beginning of my learning. I actively seek out conferences, webinars, and other learning activities as a way to learn more about my field, serve my patrons better, and network with colleagues. Below is a list of some of my recent professional development activities.

Serving the Young Adult Population: It's Not Just About Video Games (November 4, 2010)

Although this topic is perhaps most pertinent to public libraries, I always make the point that academic libraries also serve young adults. Individuals who are in their late teens and early twenties often share some of the same interests as younger teens who are still in high school. This webinar focused on three main goals: attracting teens, empowering staff, and developing programs. I thought that the second goal was the freshest. It is often assumed that the teen librarian is entirely responsible for the teen constituency, but that simply isn't productive. If the teen librarian is the only staff member who stands up for teens and welcomes them, then young adult activity is going to remain dismally low at the library. This webinar was packed with great ideas for making the library a welcoming space for young adults.

Seeing Is Reading: An Inside Look at Graphic Novels (November 2, 2010)

As you can see from my two projects highlighted in the sidebar, I enjoy graphic novels. I attended this Booklist webinar to hear about new and upcoming releases in this popular area. I am definitely going to check out some of the titles from SLG Publishing as they seem really edgy and fresh and have been well-received by YALSA.

Love and Magic: Trends in Romance Fiction (September 8, 2010)

This webinar was presented by Booklist and covered the latest in the paranormal romance genre.

Advocacy for Libraries: In Our Own Interest (August 18, 2010) This webinar, hosted by SirsiDynix Institute, featured Stephen Abram discussing the issue of advocacy in libraries. He explained that advocacy involves interpersonally connecting with local leaders. I was especially energized by Abram's point that advocacy plans should center on getting attention rather than (just) money.His discussion of attention-grabbing images was also very unique.

RSS: Feed Me (August 11, 2010)This webinar, hosted by the Nebraska Library Commission covered the whys and hows of RSS Feeds. Although I was already familiar with most of the information covered, I think that this webinar could serve as a good template for how to conduct similar workshops in a public library.

Selecting and Recommending Inspirational Fiction (August 10, 2010)Inspirational fiction, especially the sub-genre of Amish fiction, is so hot right now that I jumped at the chance to attend this Booklist webinar. The representatives from various publishers did a very good job at communicating the basics of the genre and introducing me to the latest bestsellers.

ALA Annual 2010 (June 2010)I had an amazing time and left D.C. with my head absolutely spinning with new ideas after attending entirely too many sessions to list.  "RUSA President's Program: For the Love of Reference" was incredibly inspiring, both because of the speakers and the palpable energy in the crowded room.

On the Front Lines: The Seventh Statewide Library Practitioner's Conference (March 2010)The session that had the most impact on me from this conferencewas Mary Wilkes Towner's (Urbana Free Library) "Readers' Advisory: staying current and confident in a world that publishes thousands of books a year." Towner presented so many amazing RA resources and her passion was incredibly infectious. The other sessions I attended were:

  • "Caring for Our Customers" presented by Janice Sherman from the Morton Public Library
  • "The Past's Present Future: Emerging Trends in Online Cultural Heritage" presented by Richard Urban of UIUC
  • "We've Got the Goods: The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum" by Kathryn Harris of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library