Michelle Beechey

Candidate for NYLA Councilor-at-Large for Academic/Special Libraries (2022-25)

Access Services and Open Educational Resources Librarian at SUNY Monroe Community College

Ten years ago, after speaking successfully in front of my town board to advocate for the reinstatement of evening hours at our public library, I realized the impact that could be made within my community by speaking up and getting involved. That action precipitated my volunteering with the Friends of the Library group, which suggested I apply for an open library clerk position at my town’s library. And the short story is– I was inspired by the incredible people I worked with at the public library and went back to college as a non-traditional student to pursue my master’s degree in Library Science.

Beginning as a Friends volunteer, working as a library clerk, a student intern, a librarian assistant, serving as a Library Board Trustee, as well as an academic, school, and public librarian, I have a unique perspective on the needs, potential, and value of libraries, including the people who work within them. It has become even more evident over the past few years the crucial role which all libraries play within their communities, not only in “normal” times but in times of crisis as well.

Libraries are essential in their respective communities for education, employment, mental health, literacy, recreation, and limitless other services. I am committed to providing equitable and inclusive access to library resources, programs, and services for all library users and advocating for the same. It would be an honor to serve as an NYLA Councilor-at-Large, representing my academic librarian colleagues and working with fellow librarians to contribute to the work being done to advocate for expanded support of libraries across New York State.

Biography

I am currently the Access Services & Open Educational Resources (OER) Librarian at SUNY Monroe Community College (MCC) in Rochester where I am committed to student success. I have a variety of experiences providing user-centered access and public services in diverse library settings. I have a strong background in information literacy instruction and outreach services to students, as well as leading major OER initiatives at MCC and with SUNY OER Services. I have worked with the NYLA Pathways to Librarianship Task Force to determine ways to create an equitable path to the profession, have served as a Library Board Trustee, and have been on the Greater Rochester Teen Book Fest Planning Committee for seven years.

 

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