Introducing Our New Writers!

Drum roll please! Here they are: HLS’s ten newest contributors. We can’t wait to hear how they will “hack” library school!

Nisha PicNisha Mody is getting her MLIS at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Previously, she was working as a speech-language pathologist, and prior to that, she worked as an IT consultant and IT recruiter managing to dabble in voiceover work as well. Currently, she works at the Communications Library at University of Illinois. Nisha is interested in critical librarianship (#critlib woot!), specifically with information literacy in reference and instruction. She also volunteers as a librarian at the Champaign County Jail for Urbana Champaign Books to Prisoners. Her dream is to apply social justice initiatives in the academic library. Nisha loves avocados, eggs, and bunnies (in no particular order). You can find her on twitter @nishamody.

Profile pictureAnnie Tunnicliff is a student at the University of Iowa earning an MLIS and a certificate in Book Studies. In addition to traditional library coursework, she has spent the past year studying the art and craft of bookbinding at the UI Center for the Book. Before re-entering the school world, Annie worked as an archival technician at Augustana College, as a page at the Rock Island Public Library, and as an instructional library technician at Scott Community College. Currently, she is a graduate research assistant at the Iowa Women’s Archives, where she occasionally blogs about her work. Her interests include information literacy, outreach/programming, digital curation, book arts, and sharing archival materials with the world!

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Heather Johnson is a first year student at the University of Maryland where she is pursuing her MLS in Archives and Digital Curation. She works full-time as a government contractor on a communications team for the Department of Defense and works part-time as an Archives Assistant at the Johns Hopkins Library in Baltimore, MD. She is a veteran and served in the US Army as an Arabic linguist from 2002-2007. Heather lives in Baltimore with her two cats and loves riding her bike to Camden Yards to catch an Orioles game. Sitting on her deck with a book in her hand and the O’s game on the radio suits her just fine too.



Chezlani Casar, aspiring public librarian, lives in a rural small town on the north coast of Hawai’i Island (a.k.a. “The Big Island”). She is currently a homemaker with four children, while she tackles full-time library school, which is all done via distance learning from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. As a resident of the most isolated island chain on earth, she is concerned about sustainability and food security, and hopes to use her future position as a public librarian to influence her community in that direction. In her spare time (ha, ha!) she enjoys running, cycling, and going to the beach with her husband and kids.



Kristina Williams is a first year MLIS student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is focused on digitization efforts within academic libraries, especially as it relates to coalition building in large institutions. She currently works for the university library, digitizing newspapers, and for the Graduate School of Library and Information Science in the Office of Student Affairs. She also loves a good joke, in the form of puns and Bad Kids Jokes.



Georgina Rivas-Martinez is a library student at Long Island University Post in New York. This is her first year studying at Palmer School, which is the Library School at LIU Post, and her concentration is Public Librarianship. She obtained a B.S. in Childhood Spanish Education from Molloy College this past May. She has also been working at the Freeport Memorial Library for eight years and just loves libraries. She loves what they have to offer as far as literature and programs. She’s from a Hispanic household and is completely fluent in Spanish. As a minority she is interested in reaching out to the Hispanic populations and focusing on becoming a bilingual outreach librarian. She also works at LIU’s academic library and enjoys it a lot. She thinks in the future she’d like to venture and try academic librarianship as well. Out side of the library she enjoys going to Barnes and Nobles, going to museums, and visiting different libraries. She enjoys reading Young Adult literature and also loves to read literature in Spanish.


Des Alaniz is working on a dual master’s degree in History and Archives Management at Simmons College in Boston, MA. In addition to her academics, Des volunteers as Underrepresented Communities Chair with Quist, an LGBT History app, and works as a Collections and Scanning Assistant at Harvard’s Schlesinger Library. Des is a queer, biracial latin@ and centers her work in social justice and anti-oppression in archival practices and academic theory. Other interests include archival outreach and education, digital archives, and social movement history. You can follow her in the twitterverse @littlegoldenage.


tRH3LYzcSarah Rutz is pursing her MLIS online at the University of Washington and currently lives in Chicago, Illinois. Most of her library experience lies in public libraries, working directly with patrons, and she plans to work in UX and digital librarianship, looking to the future of the library in its community. As an undergrad, Sarah studied media, journalism, and visual communications technology, and she still pursues those today by writing about comics and video games. When she’s not working on school or performing daring feats of reference service she’s geeking out over comics, playing and creating video games, going to comic conventions or clicking through Wikipedia to find obscure information and hidden pages. She also loves photography and repeatedly watching Parks and Recreation. So, if you like Parks & Recreation or lots of exclamation points about video games and TV shows, you can catch her over on Twitter at @geekgirlwrites.


Kendra Werst is an MLS candidate at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana joint specializing in Art Librarianship & Digital Libraries. She currently works as the Curatorial Assistant for the Visual Resource Center at IU’s Fine Arts Library and is a Catalog Specialist at the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction Library and Archives. Kendra also holds a leadership position in the Society of Art Librarianship Students – a special interest group for graduate students interested in the field of art librarianship, visual resources, and anything related. After being born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri she successfully received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Sculpture and Art History from the Kansas City Art Institute. Her interest in librarianship sparked in her final year of undergrad while working with art students at the Jannes Library and Learning Center. Some topics she is interested in include diversity, the digital divide, and inequality, creative, visual and digital literacy. Check out some her artwork here and her personal blog here.

Colbert-BOBCATSSSJessica Colbert is a Master’s student at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Graduate School of Library and Information Science. Despite all the strange looks from her colleagues and professors, she wants to be a cataloger. She is incredibly passionate about the ethics of information organization, and strives to make sure information is accessible and findable to all people, especially oppressed groups. In her free time, she watches a lot of movies. Like, probably too much. You can find her on twitter at @JessicaLColbert, where she tweets about film, The X-Files, library shenanigans, and pretentious tomfoolery. Also check out her website at, where she has her research and course work portfolio.
Cover photo from The Hamster Factor on Flickr Commons. Licensed under CC 2.0.

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