Tag Archives: librarians

Get to Know Your Library Staff, Part III

Sandra Kelly, part-time in Reference

Sandra Brown Kelly, Reference

I always wanted to be an English teacher, but instead I got married, became a college dropout, and got sidetracked as a newspaper reporter and editor for more than 30 years. I never lost the lust for school, however. While still working at The Roanoke Times, I got an associate’s degree in Business Administration at Virginia Western. I followed that with a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s in liberal studies at Hollins University.

When I retired early from the newspaper in 1999, I began SBK, Inc., a writing and editing company. I do freelance writing for regional magazines, such as The Roanoker and Mountain Homes. I edit the Botetourt Living magazine for the Botetourt County Chamber of Commerce and Alleghany Living for the Alleghany Highlands Chamber. I am the media relations staff for both the Mobius Awards for Advertising and the U.S. International Film & Video Festival, two media competitions in Los Angeles. That job got me a trip to the annual Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival in France.

I began teaching at Virginia Western as adjunct faculty 18 years ago and even taught the first online English class here. Most often now, I teach English 111, but my other courses have included English 112, Business Communications, and Technical Writing. I also serve (occasionally) as adjunct faculty in Journalism at Radford University and in Communications at Roanoke College.

Since early 2009, I have had the great opportunity to work two nights a week in the library helping students do research, which gives me insight into a variety of disciplines.

Other special experiences have included educational travel to El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Guatemala; participation in a GIS Fellowship at West Virginia University in Morgantown, WV, through the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), and selection as one of 25 media specialists to analyze the implications of the Human Genome Project as part of The Virginia ELSI Project, “Preparing for the New Genetics: Education of Professionals,” at the Virginis Health Policy Center, University of Virginia.

My special interests are reading, travel, and photography, especially nature photography. My two children remember with fear and loathing spending half a day fighting mosquitoes in Chincoteague on the Eastern Shore, while I photographed dragon flies.

Library Director Wins Faculty Award

Congratulations to our very own Lynn Hurt, Interim Learning Resources Director, for winning the J. Andrew Archer Outstanding Faculty Award for 2009!

Lynn Hurt wins Faculty awardThis honor is awarded annually at the Employee Recognition ceremony to acknowledge excellence in teaching and administration. These awards rotate among the academic divisions and counseling and the library. Recipients are selected by their peers.

Ann Moser and Lynn HurtAnn Moser and Lynn Hurt, the 2009 recipients

Get to Know Your Library Staff, Part II

kalycaschultz001_full-resKalyca Schultz, Library Assistant

Originally from Wisconsin, I moved to the Roanoke Valley to attend college——and never left! I’ve lived here for over ten years now and have come to love our Star City’s mountainous beauty, small town feel, and many cultural offerings.

I graduated from Hollins University in 2001 with a BA in English & Creative Writing, along with extensive coursework in Classics and Ancient Studies. I took advantage of many unique opportunities while at Hollins, such as a year spent studying archaeology in Ireland and a month-long service project in Jamaica. Before coming to Virginia Western in April of 2008, I worked at the Hollins Bookshop for five years, the last year as Store Manager.

Nowadays, I enjoy frequenting the Grandin Theatre, trying out new recipes and restaurants in town, reading,  researching my family tree, and learning to garden and photograph in black and white film.  I am also a member of an international music trading club and an anime and manga fan.

Get to Know Your Librarians, Part II

Lynn HurtLynn Hurt, Technical Services Librarian

 From the time I was a child, I have loved libraries and wanted to be a librarian. It was a long and winding road getting to this goal; however, I finally reached my destination, and the trip was definitely worth it.

I started working at Virginia Western twenty years ago in the Admissions Office, when Admissions was on the bottom floor of the library building. I thought to myself, “If I could only work my way upstairs…”

After working in Admissions for four years, I transferred into the Counseling Department where I worked as an academic advisor for eight years. By this time, Admissions and Counseling had moved to the bottom floor of Fishburn Hall. I would come over to the library on my lunch break and contemplate ways that I could advise students from the top floor of the library: “If I could only move my office over here…”

Finally in 2000, I got the opportunity to take courses through the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, to become a librarian. Although I had already received a Bachelor’s in English from North Carolina Central University and a Master’s in Liberal Studies from Hollins University, this didn’t cut it. A specific Master’s degree is required in order to become a librarian, so I had to go back to college. As our reference librarian, Laura Milliman, states in her introduction on this blog, “Yes, you really do have to go to school for this!”

During my first semester taking library science classes, a wonderful thing happened: the opportunity arose for me to transfer jobs and work in Virginia Western’s library! Working with the experienced Brown Library staff as I was taking classes helped me to reach my lifelong goal. I graduated with a Master’s in Information Science from UT (Go VOLS!) in 2003 and became the college’s Technical Services Librarian in 2005.

As Technical Services Librarian, I do a variety of things. I facilitate the ordering of books for our collection, and then I catalog and process the new books as they arrive. I repair and preserve our older books so that they can hang in there beside the new ones. I work the reference desk two nights a week, and work the virtual reference desk when our reference librarian is unable to. I create the library displays, provide a library tour (in person and online), and cook up fun library activities such as our recent “Word of the Week Contest.” Stay tuned for more fun activities to come!

In addition to all of this, I am an adjunct (part-time) instructor. I used to teach English 01 and English 111 for the college’s Humanities Division, but now I teach College Success Skills (SDV-100) online for the Student Services Division. I also provide library-related workshops for various Virginia Western classes and present seminars for the college’s retention program.

That’s the story of my travels. So, what’s your destination? Be sure to enjoy the trip along the way.

Members of Library Staff Learn About Herbs

Two members of the Brown Library staff——Laura Milliman, Reference Librarian, and Kalyca Schultz, Library Assistant——recently participated in the Horticulture department’s Gardening with Herbs class (HRT 198-N1). Taught by Julie Reusch of Village Herb Farm in Blue Ridge, the class included informative lectures on the uses for herbs and the basics of growing and caring for them in the Roanoke area, practical field trips to Virginia Western’s own Arboretum, and fun weekly food breaks during which everyone shared dishes they’d made with herbal ingredients.

Herb GardenJulie’s open and easy style of teaching lent itself to active classroom discussions, and she always encouraged questions. For her class project, Laura created a very useful resource guide, which lists many of the books, periodicals, and articles in the Brown Library’s collection concerning herbs and gardening. Kalyca did her presentation, with an aromatic demonstration, on incenses, which are made from herbs, resins, barks, seeds, roots, gums, and flowers.

Kalyca now has a thriving mini-herb garden in containers on her front porch, and Laura is still nursing the free rosemary cutting everyone received at the end of class. She awaits the day it has grown enough to transplant it to her first container garden. Here’s hoping for a second installment of the Gardening with Herbs class soon!