February Member Spotlight

Sheila Garcia
Resident Librarian in Learning Programs and Initiatives
University of Michigan

What are you currently reading?
I am currently reading "Sites of Translation: What Multilinguals Can Teach Us about Digital Writing and Rhetoric" by Laura Gonzales and listening to "The Book of Unknown Americans" by Cristina Henriquez. 

What are your research interests?
My research interests lie at the intersection between critical pedagogy and language, seeking to gain greater insight into how practices such as cultural brokering and information literacy instruction impact information dissemination in migrant communities. My overall goal through my work is to deconstruct flows of information within library spaces in order to improve the library services we provide to our communities.

Do you have hobbies or interests outside of the library?
When I get a chance, I like to draw. My preferred tools are charcoal and graphite for portraits while I love to use copic markers to color my more cartoon-style drawings. I am also a creative fiction writer and have various pieces of a novel I started writing five years ago residing across the plethora of journals I own. Aside from conference travel, I usually plan for one international trip a year with my younger sister. So far we have been to Tokyo, London, and San Juan.

What drew you to the library profession?
When I wrapped up my undergrad, I knew that I wanted to work with migrant communities in some way. A position as a library assistant at the local library opened up, and I applied thinking that I could help these communities indirectly, as I knew libraries offered many resources for migrant communities. After a year, I decided to pursue a librarian degree because I realized that I love to build community and help people by connecting them to the resources they need.

What do you value about MiALA?
I value the range of experiences that individuals bring to the organization. As a native of Michigan and someone that started out working in public libraries, academic librarianship has been like a whole new world on its own. Connecting with individuals all over Michigan through MiALA has shown me not only the vast range of resources and expertise available, but also many of the new approaches and practices that librarians are employing to continue to engage with their campus communities. As a fairly new professional, this has been invaluable to me!

Is there anything else that you would like to share?
If you're on Twitter like me, please feel free to follow: ssgarcia23. I mostly retweet things but also post whenever I'm at a conference (including the MiALA annual conference!)