Anne Langley (’93) is Head Librarian at Princeton University’s Science and Technology Libraries, as well as the Chemistry Liaison. Recently she added Director of Scholarly Communications to her list of responsibilities. Langley always knew she wanted to be in administration for an academic library.
At UT, she was able to customize her studies by doing a practicum with an administrator at Hodges Library. As a result of that practicum, the first three years after graduation Langley worked as a special projects librarian at Hodges. She gained experience with collection development and management, library systems, and data collection and analysis. The project work gave her a foundation from which she has built the career of her dreams.
Prior to Princeton, Langley worked at North Carolina State and Duke Universities. Her last position at Duke was Embedded Chemistry Librarian. Her undergraduate work included Chemistry and Chemical Engineering studies. Langley has successfully melded her experiences and education to create a career that is uniquely hers.
At some universities, librarians are considered tenure-track faculty and at others they are not. At Princeton, Langley will start over with her work to attain tenure, also called continuing appointment. She considers the tenured librarianship academic position to be the best fit for her. She has co-authored three books and written numerous articles, white papers and conference papers.
Langley was able to focus her learning activities at UT to match her goals and dreams. Her advice for cur- rent and prospective students is to learn how to sell their ideas both internally and externally. Knowing how to organize and prioritize multiple projects can go a long way toward being a good administrator. Her other advice: Take a marketing course. Langley never expected that learning how to effectively ‘cold call’ faculty and department chairs to learn more about them, their students and their research, would be a much needed skill. She was also surprised to discover that designing marketing materials and developing ad copy would become an integral part of her responsibilities.
Looking back, Langley said finding a mentor who is already in the field is hugely important. The mentor can provide the student with coaching on interviewing skills, resume review, and career and academic guidance. “I’m glad to see the SIS Alumni Society is continuing to work with students on developing interviewing skills and providing some resume help,” said Langley. “UT SIS students are very fortunate to have an active group of alumni willing to help even for the many students that do not reside in Knoxville.” Langley has offered her assistance as well.
A footnote of interest to our GIS readers…
Within the Lewis Library at Princeton, the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) library service is among the busiest because it serves the entire campus, not just the sciences. The GIS librarian averages at least two 1-hour client sessions each work day. With this volume of service, it is clearly an advancing area of need within libraries. This year SIS added a new faculty member with a focus on GIS studies, Dr. Wade Bishop. With SIS ties to libraries such as the Princeton Lewis Library, possibilities exist to create collaborative learning opportunities. While these options are being developed, current and prospective students can access the network of UT SIS alums like Langley who are willing to mentor others just as they were the recipients of mentoring during their time as students.
Langley is editor of the open access blog oanow.org.