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I Am MLA: Hanna Schmillen

Submitted by Hanna Schmillen; edited by JJ Pionke.
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Institution: Ohio University

Title: Interim Department Head of Liaison Services | Subject Librarian for Health Sciences

Brief description of responsibilities:

As the Head of Subject Liaison Services, I focus on leading the other subject liaisons to explore the identity of liaison work in libraries while building teamwork. This department is an experiment to better understand the collaborative nature of subject liaisons work and what that means to the future of the OHIO Libraries. As the health liaison, I focus on instruction, research support, collection development, outreach, and programming. I am the only health sciences librarian who serves the entire College of Health Sciences and Professions, which includes nursing, PA, PT, athletic training, nutrition, communication sciences, social work, and more.

Why is MLA important to you?

MLA is important to me because it has allowed me to advance my career faster than I would have been able to without the professional development and support the organization has provided. MLA, you are my connection to other medical and health librarians, which is so important.

Why did you become a librarian?

I realized my work would be different every day and I didn't have to work in a lab. (Ha!) I was a biology major and worked as a work study student at my university's library. I LOVED it. I loved that I could help people with research and I felt like I made a difference. I still do.

What is your advice to someone taking on a new role in leadership in MLA or in some other capacity?

Become a good facilitator of team and meeting discussions. Your team and their trust should be your number one priority, and good discussions are a great way to build that trust and increase team engagement.

What has been the most interesting project you have worked on?

I am the team lead for the Ohio University Libraries' integration into the university's Guarantee+ program. This program was designed by the provost's office to increase recruitment, retention, and better graduation rates. Part of the program is a tailored graduation plan for each student, and in those plans, the Libraries are being integrated through each student's major. In short, we are strategically placing three information literacy learning opportunities ("milestones") in every undergraduate program at the university. So exciting! So much work . . . if you are interested to learn more, here is a link to our news blog.

Bucket list:

A lot of travel and fun cooking classes.

What do you do in your spare time?

Read and/or watch TV

What is the best thing you’ve read/watched/listened to recently?

Schitt's Creek (I know, I am behind and now I am obsessed). And I am currently listing to the podcast Lore, which is all about folklore and spooky stuff.

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