NMRT Member of the Week Spotlight: Jessica Calderwood

Institution/Location of Institution:
University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ

Job Title:
Library Information Analyst

Brief job description:

I wrangle all sorts of numbers about equipment and space use into understandable graphs and reports that Leadership and Administration use to make decisions about library needs and use.

What are some things you like about your job or about working in libraries in general?

I’ve always felt at home in libraries and among books, but I NEVER thought I’d be doing data work. For most of my life I was convinced that I was no good at math and “didn’t get it.” It wasn’t until I was pushed out of my comfort zone that I found that not only did I “get it,” it was FUN.

What’s a project or committee you’re working on right now that you’re excited about?

We just completed a large multi-week survey of students using our equipment lending program. My colleague and I are now working on analyzing the results and putting together a clear, professional report. The work we’ve done here will allow us to advocate for the things that our students really want – mostly more Macbooks – and help us make decisions about budget and funding for the coming semester.

What got you interested in libraries?

I was job hunting after I graduated with my undergraduate degree and saw a position in archives that really appealed to me – digitizing archival materials. I’ve followed a pretty winding path through libraries since then and never did get a chance to work in archives, but the work I HAVE done has been tremendously valuable, interesting, and engaging.

What is one of your favorite things about NMRT?

Diverse perspectives and a welcoming attitude!

Do you have any advice for other new librarians?

It’s okay to be afraid, and it’s okay to not end up where you thought you would! Do the things that interest you, and EXPRESS that interest! When I first started at the UA Library I was always asking people if I could help out with different projects or tasks, and  that willingness to help and expose myself to a lot of different things showed my supervisor that I was ready for more.


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