As part of the 2019 Project SET Cohort, Amy Horning, Children’s Librarian at Medford Public Library, is exploring library trends and connecting with colleagues outside of her library. On November 4, each of the 11 members of the Project SET Cohort will give a five minute presentation at the MLS Annual Meeting. 

For her presentation, Amy will investigate ways to better serve Brazilian populations in Massachusetts. Over the course of her career, Amy has worked in many different towns, each with their own distinctive immigrant makeup. As a result, Amy has spent a lot of time thinking about what these populations are thinking about when they encounter American libraries. What do they expect when they walk through the library doors? Do they even know what libraries are? Would they come in if they are concerned about their immigration status? Are there public libraries in their home countries? In February, Amy will begin a 9-month Fulbright research grant in Brazil to look at exactly these questions from the viewpoint of one of the Massachusetts’ largest immigrant populations. After her presentation Amy would like to see more effective outreach being done to Brazilian immigrants in our cities and towns.

Imagine that library staff were more aware of these different mindsets in the patrons they serve every day. How would their service change? How would our outreach change? It can be overwhelming to try to consider every different background, but just getting these questions percolating can be a good start.

The Medford Public Library serves a diverse community of families, students, and downtown commuters. The Library has begun building a brand new state of the art library building which should be completed in the spring of 2020! The library looks forward to experimenting with new ways to serve the public of Medford, whether it is with a library of things, enhanced maker space programming, or by providing a third space, neither home nor work, for the community to meet and engage. They hope to serve more people than they were able to in their old building.

Amy was originally interested in Project SET because she would like to continue to learn throughout her career and doesn’t ever want to lose the desire to keep up with new trends. Amy is also interested in learning more about non traditional career paths for librarians.

We hope to see you on November 4th at our Annual Meeting, to be held at the Hogan Center at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA. Registration is now open on our calendar. To learn more about Project SET? Visit our LibGuide!