Wednesday 20 February 2013

Meet Your Academic Services Librarian

This is a series of posts introducing you to the members of the Academic Services Team.

Amy Staniforth

My name is Amy Staniforth and I came to libraries and archives via academia. After an undergraduate degree in American and Canadian Studies at Birmingham University – with a year at University of California Santa Barbara (!) - and an MA in Literature and Environment at the University of Nevada, Reno (the first place to offer the MA programme) I did my PhD in African Studies back in Birmingham. Texts and environments of all sorts are always at the heart of my interests – from locally inspired detective fiction to museum displays and the National Geographic’s reporting of the discovery of human ancestors in east Africa – and I love to help people see the potential source material all around them.

Originally from mid Wales my dogs and I were lured to the seaside where I first worked for BBC Online and then managed a theatre special collection at the University here, before starting as Information Officer in Information Services in January 2013.

I work for the academic services team in the Hugh Owen Library and have particular interests in teaching research skills and developing diverse uses of special collections. When not in the library I’m working on my Archives Administration diploma as a distance learner and have been helping to organise the Centre for Alternative Technology’s archive in collaboration with the National Library of Wales.

In my proper ‘spare’ time though, I enjoy reading novels. After my PhD I found I’d forgotten how to read fiction without guilt so I still tend to binge read. I also love food and walking, the latter preferably with dogs. Dogs weren’t allowed on the Across Wales Walk which I did last year, so my brother came along and luckily unlike him, I remembered my boots! Having lived in the US and Tanzania as well as wild West Wales, I do like a travelling challenge, we did Christmas ‘In Bruges’ with the dogs one year and have done a few road trips to see family in Czech – always a long way round and often incorporating driving over the alps in a very old car…because why not?

One day I’d like to travel to see the northern lights and do some night time snow walking, but for now I’ll settle for sitting with a novel in our (almost complete) low energy home looking at the rain through triple glazed windows!

Update (April 2013): Amy is now the Institutional Repository and Metadata Team Leader  

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