The Library’s newest staff member is Public Services Librarian Kristin Anderson. Kristin’s responsibilities include providing evening and late-night research assistance to Lewis students, faculty and staff. She is also responsible for evening and weekend programming such as the recent Zombie Week and International Games Week events. You can reach her by email at kanderson12(at)lewisu(dot)edu, or just stop by the Library and say hi!
Welcome to Lewis University Library, Kristin! What aspects of your new position as Public Services Librarian (Evenings and Weekends) are you most excited about?
I’m super excited to work late, since I am NOT a morning person. There isn’t enough coffee in the world for that. I’m also looking forward to working with an “older” population. My previous position was as a children’s librarian, so it will be fun to field more research-based questions. (Although I do miss doing storytimes and crafts…unless you guys want to do that, too? Ha.)
What made you decide to become a librarian? What is your favorite part of the job?
I have wanted to be a librarian since I was little. My grandmother took me to the library nearly every day, and being here kind of reminds me of her. I’ve always been drawn to books, too. My same grandmother liked to tell the story of one time when she had to spend the night at my house. She came to check on me only to find that I was asleep surrounded by more books than stuffed animals in my bed.
My favorite part of the job is helping students. I was always told to find a job that has a high satisfaction level, and when I can help students find what they’re looking for… that’s the best feeling in the world.
Your background includes experience as a children’s librarian as well as an academic librarian. What are the similarities and differences between these two types of libraries?
I do have an equal amount of experience working in both public libraries and academic libraries, which some people find odd. They are actually easy to transition between. You are still finding information for people, and helping them find the sources that they need. The tools you use to find those sources are a little different, but the skills are relatively the same.
The clientele is probably the biggest difference. In academic libraries, the information is way more scholarly in nature, and there is a lot more instruction on how to find the best information. In the children’s library, the patrons are usually looking for more entertainment-based information, although I did help people find sources for homework there, too, so that is absolutely the same.
What are you passionate about?
In libraries I am extremely passionate about intellectual freedom. It really makes me angry when people try to censor things or get things banned from libraries. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and discourse creates better ideas, which can help people learn to separate the bad from the good.
Outside of libraries (I know this is going to make me look like a stereotypical librarian, but) I REALLY like cats … like A LOT. I find them delightful, and I’ve liked them since before I could walk.
If you had a year off with pay (hypothetically, of course!), what would you do?
I would probably just read a lot and play Skyrim every day. But if this year off included a lump sum of $fun$, then I would probably either explore the English Isles/Europe or drive all over the US to see weird roadside attractions like the biggest ball of twine.
What are you reading (or what was the last book you read)?
Strange Weather by Joe Hill … one of my favorite genres is Horror, and Stephen King and his sons definitely serve up what I like. I also really like sci-fi and graphic novels, and since I came from a children’s library, I read a lot of children’s fiction and young adult fiction.