September 14, 2022
22-132

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

VSU Student Named an Emerging Leader by Ohio Library Council

The Ohio Library Council recently honored Taryn Mirabello, a student in Valdosta State University’s Department of Library and Information Studies, with the 2022 Diana Vescelius Emerging Leader Award. She anticipates earning a Master of Library and Information Science from VSU in May 2023.

mirabello-with-twin-daughters-violet-and-claire-l-r-2022.jpgTaryn Mirabello is the mother of 2-year-old twin daughters Violet and Claire. She hopes that earning the Ohio Library Council’s Diana Vescelius Emerging Leader Award “will inspire other girls and young women to pursue their dreams, build each other up, and know their own worth.”

mirabello-reading-to-children-at-a-lucasville-library-toddler-time-pajama-party-2019.jpgTaryn Mirabello currently serves as supervisor for the Lucasville Branch of the Portsmouth Public Library in Scioto County, Ohio. She said, "What I enjoy most about working in a library is being able to offer that same magic to all patrons, especially young children whose newfound relationship with the library hopefully translates into a lifetime love of learning. I know firsthand that libraries and librarians change lives." 

VALDOSTA — The Ohio Library Council recently honored Taryn Mirabello, a student in Valdosta State University’s Department of Library and Information Studies, with the 2022 Diana Vescelius Emerging Leader Award. She described the recognition as a defining achievement in what she hopes will be a meaningful, long-lasting, and impactful library career.

Mirabello was born and raised and now works in Scioto County, a rural Appalachian area located in the foothills of southern Ohio.

“Fortunately, I come from a long line of strong, industrious women. In many ways, I feel like this award is a testament to my mother and late grandmother, because without their love, guidance and support, I would not be who or where I am today.”

Mirabello currently serves as supervisor for the Lucasville Branch of the Portsmouth Public Library in Scioto County, Ohio. She helps provide programs, materials, and services for a diverse population and was instrumental in developing a sensory-inclusive story time for adults with disabilities. She also writes articles for “The Time Traveler,” a local history publication.

“Throughout my formative years, the library was a source of inspiration and happiness to me,” she noted. “What I enjoy most about working in a library is being able to offer that same magic to all patrons, especially young children whose newfound relationship with the library hopefully translates into a lifetime love of learning. I know firsthand that libraries and librarians change lives, and it is thoroughly rewarding as an emerging library leader to be able to pay it forward.”  

Growing up, Mirabello’s one and only career aspiration was to become a writer. She never really thought about working in a library, but that all changed when she entered the School of the Art Institute of Chicago to pursue a Master of Fine Arts in Writing and landed her first library job.

“I worked as a circulation clerk at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s John M. Flaxman Library,” she added.

Mirabello “loved” working at the academic library; however, she said she “still never considered pursuing a career in librarianship.”

After graduation Mirabello returned to Ohio to help take care of her grandmother and to write. In 2012 she began working as a clerk at Portsmouth Public Library.

“For years, writing remained my main focus,” she explained. “Over the next six years at Portsmouth Public Library, I was promoted to positions of progressively increasing responsibility. It was only when I became branch supervisor in 2018 that something clicked, and I thought, ‘Okay, Taryn. You enjoy library work. You've been promoted, so you must be somewhat good at library work. You are most likely going to be working in libraries for the foreseeable future. Why not get your Master of Library and Information Science?"

Mirabello’s first point of contact at VSU was Dr. Linda Most, associate professor and former head of the Department of Library and information Studies.

“Her prompt response to my initial inquiry was a major reason why I ultimately chose to attend VSU,” Mirabello said. “Dr. Most is my academic advisor and has consistently provided me with timely, informative, and helpful responses to all my questions. I am very grateful for her and for all the phenomenal professors at VSU.”

During the 2021-2022 academic year, Mirabello served as vice president for the Student Organization of Library and Information Science. She anticipates earning a Master of Library and Information Science from VSU in May 2023.

“I elected to pursue library management as my area of interest,” she shared. “This has afforded me valuable knowledge, experience, and networking opportunities that will serve me well in my future career endeavors.”

As part of a project for the Leadership in Libraries course taught by Dr. Gordon Baker, recipient of the Georgia Public Library’s 2019 Library Champion of the Year Award, Mirabello had the opportunity to interview Beverly Cain, state librarian of Ohio.

“The information gleaned from that interview continues to inform my leadership process today,” she said.

In her Academic Libraries course, Dr. Emily Rogers, professor and Odum Library reference librarian, introduced Mirabello to top trends in academic libraries and gave her an opportunity to interview librarians at research universities across the country. Through Dr. Julia Skinner’s Libraries and Literacy in History course, Mirabello was able to use her creative writing background when composing a research essay on female librarians in the Victorian era.

“Having researched Master of Library and Information Science course offerings at programs nationwide, I am certain that I would not have had all the opportunities I've had at VSU had I pursued my degree elsewhere,” Mirabello added. “I cannot overemphasize how wonderful VSU's library science program is and how valuable the coursework has been in terms of preparing me for my future.”

Mirabello is a first-generation college student, wife, and mother of 2-year-old twin daughters. She hopes that earning the Ohio Library Council’s Diana Vescelius Emerging Leader Award “will inspire other girls and young women to pursue their dreams, build each other up, and know their own worth.”

On the Web:
https://www.valdosta.edu/colleges/education/master-of-library-and-information-science/
https://olc.org/
https://www.yourppl.org/

 

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