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SPOTLIGHT on Alumni - Bonnie Swooser

This series SPOTLIGHTs St. Lawrence alumni who have become or are studying to become librarians.

What was your class year at St. Lawrence?  

         1999

What was your major/minor?

         Geology

Did you work in any of the St. Lawrence libraries?  If so, when, where, what department?

I worked at the circulation desk in the science library for a couple of semesters prior to graduation. I remember spending a lot of time copying ILL requests and figuring out how to use the photocopy machine.

Why did you decide to become a librarian?

While I was at SLU and for several years beyond, I didn't think of librarianship as a potential career. After St. Lawrence, I earned an MS in Geology from Kent State University. I spent a few years teaching introductory geology classes and labs at the college level. While doing this, I noticed that many of my students had no idea about the resources available in the library. In researching how to help them become better researchers, I discovered the concept of information literacy and made the connection that librarians help students learn about information. At that point, I decided to pursue an MLS.

When and where did you get your library degree?

I finished my MLS from the University at Buffalo in 2008.

Where are you working now?  Please provide a line or two describing your responsibilities.

I am currently the Head of Reference and Access Services at SUNY Geneseo's Milne Library. I oversee the circulation and interlibrary loan departments in Access Services, and work closely with our Head of Instruction to lead a talented team of reference and instruction librarians. I am heavily involved in the assessment of library services and staff professional development. I also serve as the library liaison to Geneseo's science departments.