Member of the Week: Beth McNeil

Beth McNeilBeth McNeil is Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor at the Purdue University Libraries in West Lafayette, Indiana. Beth has been an ACRL member since 1990, is a co-editor of the ACRL book Advocacy, Outreach, and the Nation’s Academic Libraries,  and is your ACRL member of the week.

1. Describe yourself in three words: I love libraries!

2. What are you reading right now (or listening to on your iPod)? For fun, I’m reading Ian McEwan’s Solar and Raising Baby Green: The Earth Friendly Guide. For work, I’m reading Christine Borgman’s Scholarship in the Digital Age.  For my dissertation, I’m trying to read articles about academic library leadership development programs.  And, to help me keep it all together, I just finished re-reading Life-Work Balance by Melanie Hawks (an ACRL publication!).

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Terrific National Conferences.

4. Why did you join ACRL? ACRL felt like the best place for me as a young librarian, and that continues to be true. I joined for the conference programming, professional networking, and continuing education opportunities.

5. What do you value about academic or research librarianship? Working on a university campus, with students, faculty, and researchers, means I am always learning something new and interesting.  Having the opportunity to work with students, to feel their energy and enthusiasm, makes coming to the library each day a pleasure.

6. In your own words: So much has changed since I finished library school 20+ years ago. Roles are shifting, traditional functions are changing, every day we’re looking for new ways to support learning and discovery.  We’re partnering with faculty and researchers in new ways.  It’s an exciting time to be in academic libraries!

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 for more information.