For the sunny month of July, we will celebrate by talking to one of our newer staff members, Jenny Abbott. Starting here at Victor Farmington Library June of 2014 (wow! That long ago!), Jenny has been a great addition to the staff. She brings a sunny disposition and multiple skills to the team.
Interview by Andrew Ceyton.
Hello Jenny! Thank you so much for sitting and talking with us. Let’s start from the beginning: Where are you from and how did you get here?
I’m from Geneva – I got here by driving down Rt.96 🙂 I started at VFL last summer as a Library student doing an internship. I liked it sooo much I asked if there were any clerk openings, and when there was one, I snapped it up. In October of last year, the bookkeeper of the library left and I left my job of 18 years to become the bookkeeper here in addition to my clerk duties.
We’re glad you did. What inspired you to pursue a career in the Library Science?
I LOVE kids and they seem to feel the same about me. I wanted to do something that would positively impact their lives. Being a teacher, though, I thought I could only probably reach one class of kids a year. With being a librarian, especially in a public setting, I can reach a whole community of children, and not just during the school year.
That’s a great point about a community of children versus just a class at a time. I definitely hear Lynne remarking on watching kids grow. What has coming to VFL done to change or strengthen that outlook?
The outlook about my work with kids has not changed since I got to VFL. They are my favorite population to serve, they seem to like me (most of them) and I get immense satisfaction looking for a book they’ll like to read, helping them find something they need for a school project or showing them ways to do research. What’s changed in my perception is that I didn’t realize how much I enjoy helping the whole community not just of children but all of the patrons of Victor Farmington Library.
It’s a great community to serve, you meet some delightful people here. As good as it is, what changes would you like to see come to VFL in the next few years?
I’d love to see more pre-teens & teens get more active in the library. I’d like to have some more evening programs for kids and families if there is an audience for it. After working at an agency that served the developmentally disabled for most of my career, it would be great if the library could expand the work we do to serve that population.
Those are several parts of the community that would be exciting to see benefit from our services. Let’s slow down with some easier questions. Name a favorite childhood book, one that you fondly remember or recommend to others.
Just one. . . That’s not an easier question – that’s the hardest one yet! The Little House Series was definitely a favorite! I probably read it 3 or 4 times as a kid! More recently – anything by Mo Willems is amazing!
How about a book read recently that you enjoyed. Or any all-time favorites.
Recently I read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up: the Japanese art of decluttering, by Marie Kondo. I’m not any neater, but it was a good read. I really like anything by Susan Elizabeth Phillips and A Week in Winter by Maeve Binchey was amazing. She was my favorite!
Finally, if you could follow around a famous person, any era, who would it be?
Eleanor Roosevelt. She had so many different facets of her life not only as a first lady, but her work after Franklin died. I think it would be very entertaining and educational to follow her around. As opposed to Cleopatra, I do like my modern conveniences.