We Would Like you to Meet: Laurie Borchard

Contributed by
Laurie Borchard

Librarian Laurie Borchard in Front of the Oviatt LibraryAs a Digital Learning Initiatives Librarian, my primary focus is meeting the needs of our students in an online environment. This means that I collaborate with fellow librarians and campus faculty in planning initiatives relating to information competency, embedded librarianship (where the librarian is integrated into Moodle), open access repositories, and the creation of digital learning objects. Some of my current projects include the Research Therapy video series, and over the summer I will be working on creating instructional content accessible on iPads for the myCSUNtablet Initiative. I also work with students in person, helping them with their research while staffing the ‘Ask a Librarian desk’ and teaching library instruction sessions. No matter what I’m doing on campus, I always try to include outreach and remind students as well as faculty of all the services we provide at the Oviatt.

As part of this outreach component of my job, this past semester I started the Meet the Librarians of the Oviatt blog series for our blog Cited at the Oviatt. Usually posted once a month, the blog includes a current photo of the featured librarian and Q&A on topics relating to his/her job, as well as personal interests. I developed the questions based on other library blogs that I’ve seen and interviews with celebrities that I read in magazines. I simply send out an email asking for volunteers, and so far I’ve had a lot of librarians who want to participate. I send them the following list of questions, ask them to choose 10 they’d like to answer, and then follow up with a photo shoot so I have the most current photo.

Screenshot of the Meet the Librarians Series on the Oviatt Library's "Cited at the Oviatt" blog.

  1. Where are you from originally?
  2. What do you like/admire most about CSUN students?
  3. What’s your favorite book or your top 5?
  4. What songs would you include on the soundtrack of your life?
  5. Why did you become a librarian?
  6. What do you wish every student knew about the library or librarians?
  7. What’s your favorite quote?
  8. Is there a specific class for which you really enjoy doing library instruction?
  9. If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would it be?
  10. If you could learn any skill, what would it be?
  11. If you could witness any event in history, what would it be?
  12. What do you find most surprising about CSUN students?
  13. If you could be any fictional character, who would it be?
  14. What are some of your current projects/tutorials on which you are working?
  15. What are your research interests?

I created the series because I think a lot of students and faculty have some misconceptions of what it is we librarians do. They either don’t understand the nature of our work, or they think all librarians do the same thing. Here at the Oviatt we have such a diverse group of faculty librarians, and they all have varied expertise and research interests. I think it’s important for the community to be aware of that. I also wanted to make the blog posts lighthearted, so I ask questions that are related to more personal interests, such as favorite books, songs, etc. This aspect of the interview makes the librarians a little more relatable, so not only are the users learning about what  librarians do, but also about who we are on a more  personal level.

Starting in the Fall, I hope to expand the series to include student employees here at the Oviatt. We have such a wonderful group of student workers, and they have very interesting research interests at both the undergraduate and graduate level. I think we all can look forward to hearing their stories.

Check out the Meet the Librarians of the Oviatt blog series.