ACRL Member of the Week: Kristen Cooper

Kristen Cooper

Kristen Cooper is a plant sciences librarian at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul. Kristen, a 2020 ALA Emerging Leader, has been a member of ACRL for 5 years and is your ACRL Member of the Week for February 24, 2020.

Kristen Cooper

Describe yourself in three words: Curious, nerdy, ginger.

What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device(s)? I am reading, We are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby.

Describe ACRL in three words: Connecting, encouraging, educational.

What do you value about ACRL? I really appreciate the opportunities to make connections with colleagues that ACRL provides through its committees, programs and conferences. Learning about what other librarians are doing to improve and expand their instruction, research, and support of their patrons motivates me to improve my own work and exposes me to ideas I would not otherwise find.

What do you as an academic librarian contribute to your campus? As the liaison to the Plant Science departments at the University of Minnesota, I have the opportunity to support the research and teaching of the departments. I visit courses to teach information literacy sessions, work one on one with graduate students and faculty on literature searching, data management, and communication skills such as how to create scientific posters and presentations. Collaboration is important to me, and I have been able to collaborate with the members of my departments and my colleagues. I’ve had the opportunity to work with a faculty member to integrate multiple library sessions into their course and create an assignment (which was harder than I thought it would be!) and to contribute to the formation of a data sharing appendix for one departments graduate student handbook. Through research projects with colleagues I have gotten to learn about and explore the world of grey literature and in another project increase my knowledge of research metrics. I’m very thankful to work with great people and I really look forward to future collaboration opportunities.

In your own words:
I have always enjoyed science, and for most of my childhood I wanted to be a marine biologist. Now as an academic librarian, one of my favorite aspects of the job is being able to support the amazing research that is going on in my departments and at my institution. Being able to help the advancement of science and knowledge through supporting my researchers is super satisfying. As a part of this I think sharing that research is very important, so I am always excited and happy to help with data management and sharing. I hope to learn more about science communication so I can be the best support for researchers as I can.


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.