Member of the Week: Susanne M. Markgren

Susanne MarkgrenSusanne M. Markgren is the assistant director for technical services at Manhattan College in Riverdale, New York. Susanne first joined ACRL in 2008 and is your ACRL member of the week for May 15, 2017.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Adaptable, inquisitive, resilient.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device)? I’m currently obsessed with short stories, and I’m alternating between these three amazing collections: Joy Williams’ The Visiting Privilege, Lucia Berlin’s A Manual for Cleaning Women, and Clarice Lispector’s Complete Stories.

In the car and on walks, I like to listen to The Moth Radio Hour, or The Moth Podcast. True stories, well told. Totally addictive.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Scalable, motivational, community.

4. What do you value about ACRL? In using the three words above, I value ACRL because of its scalability. People can participate in a variety of ways to suit their individual schedules, needs, and expectations, and at the chapter level or national level, or both. I’ve been involved in my local chapter of ACRL for over a decade and I cannot express how much I appreciate and value the community of professionals that often feels like family. We support one another, encourage and motivate one another, and are constantly recruiting others into the fold. We engage with library professionals and students in our local area by offering workshops, panel sessions, symposia, tours, meet ‘n greets, and a formal mentoring program; and we work with other local library organizations on professional development opportunities and programming geared for academic librarians. At the national level, I’m excited to be a member of the ACRL New Publications Advisory Board.

5. What do you as an academic librarian contribute to your campus? I’ve only been in my current position since August, so I definitely bring a new outlook and vision to my campus, my library, and my role in technical services. As someone who has worked in a variety of positions in several different types of libraries, I bring a broad knowledge of systems, workflows, and management styles which comes in handy when transitioning to a new place. I tend to be an optimist and a big-thinker who likes to come up with new and creative ways to do things. I think experimentation and flexibility are directly tied to engagement and productivity, and I hope that I can encourage those around me to continue to learn and grow and collaborate.

6. In your own words: The best part of my career as an academic librarian has been the people I’ve worked with along the way: my mentors and colleagues who’ve supported me and inspired me and pushed me to achieve more than I thought I could. I’d like to think that each role I’ve been in (and there’s been a lot) has propelled me toward the next one, and each skill I’ve acquired and connection I’ve made have helped open new doors and new opportunities. I’m thrilled that I can now give back by mentoring others and sharing what I’ve learned along the way, and ACRL gives me a platform to do so. In order to remain relevant on our campuses, and in our profession, we need to contribute and share our knowledge, experience, skills, and passion—and to become advocates for our collections, our services, and our roles.


Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at mpetrowski@ala.org for more information.