Describe yourself in three words

Analytical, determined, resourceful.

What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device)?

I am keeping pace with a wide array of readings, from the most recent advancements in Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) to the dynamic field of machine learning and its implications on higher education and libraries. I’ve recently finished reading Human Compatible by Stuart Russell and Life 3.0 by Max Tegmark, and have added HBR’s 10 Must Reads on AI to my reading list. I am honing my graphic design skills in my spare time using platforms like Adobe Photoshop and Canva, focusing on AI-integrated applications and listening to some podcasts related to AI and Libraries.

Describe ACRL in three words:

Learning, innovation, leadership.

What do you value about ACRL?

ACRL holds significant value in my academic librarian role, providing exceptional opportunities for professional development, grants, recognition, and advocacy to help me excel in my mission to serve students and faculty. Moreover, ACRL has allowed me to serve on various committees and network with other committed librarians. ACRL plays a pivotal role in shaping the future of academic libraries and higher education.

What do you as an academic librarian contribute to your campus?

Since 2014, I have worked closely with faculty and students to enhance literacy and information skills using the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education through various embedded librarian interventions. My role has been pivotal in fostering a learning culture and promoting the effective use of information resources in multiple disciplines, such as English, Speech, History, Government, and Biology.

As an embedded librarian, I deeply integrate into user communities to understand students’ needs and provide prompt support. In the case of the online learning environment at El Paso Community College, I would be deeply embedded in the Learning Management System (LMS) Blackboard online platform with teaching faculty. I provide tailored online information literacy instruction and assignments, reference services, and other online support. It has been an advancing project, and to this day, some instructional faculty have redesigned their courses to include information literacy assignments and an embedded librarian. A history faculty even included a graded essay assignment to have students reflect on the library research process for their History Research as an opportunity to reflect on what they learned, recognize their achievements, and identify their challenges. The Texas Library Association recognized these efforts as the Library Instruction Project of the Year (2018). Currently, this model is being expanded to be implemented district-wide.

Additionally, I am always writing grants to bring new literacy and information technology opportunities to our patrons and active in various professional associations and committees related to emerging technologies, academic libraries, and library instruction to bring new ideas to our community or serve as a resource for challenging situations. In addition to these roles, I also embrace the role of trailblazer, assertively pursuing headship positions in strategic institutional initiatives. During the pandemic, I took the lead in transitioning our face-to-face reference services for all five campuses to online virtual assistance, as we did not have virtual reference services before the pandemic, and supported librarians in transitioning to online library instruction. I love my job and am always up for a challenge to lead change, assume increased responsibility within my professional environment, or bring innovative ideas to strengthen library services and instruction at my campus or district-wide.

In your own words

Being an academic/research librarian is like being a lighthouse in the vast ocean of knowledge. Each day, I guide students and faculty through the waves of information, helping them navigate toward the shores of understanding. The joy of seeing a student’s face light up when they find the perfect source for their research or a faculty member appreciating a newly acquired resource is immeasurable. Yet, it’s not just about the books and databases; it’s about fostering a culture of curiosity, critical thinking, and lifelong learning. Every question answered, every class taught, and every collection curated adds a brick to our institution's edifice of knowledge. Despite the challenges, the rapid pace of technological change, the constant need for upskilling, and the pressure of budget constraints - the rewards of empowering others with information make every day a fulfilling journey. Reflecting on my academic librarian role, I realize that I am not just a custodian of books but a beacon of learning, illuminating the path for others to follow for success. I oversee a dual mission library, public and academic, and having the opportunity to also work on early childhood literacy gives me the opportunity to instill information literacy and lifelong learning at an early age.



Title:Head Librarian/Associate Professor

Job Function:Head Librarian

Workplace:El Paso Community College - Northwest Campus

Location:El Paso, TX