Staff Spotlight - Introducing April Mann, Metadata Specialist
The Himmelfarb Library continues this feature in our newsletter that lets us become better acquainted with our friends and colleagues at the Himmelfarb Library. In this issue we learn more about April Mann, Metadata Specialist.
Where are you from and what brought you to GW?
I was born and raised in Prince George’s County, Maryland and am of Jamaican-descent. I’ve bounced around academically. During K-12, I attended Alexandria City Public Schools in Virginia, and graduated from T.C. Williams High School. (Have you ever seen the movie “Remember the Titans”? Yes, that school. Go Titans!). I then enrolled at The Saint Augustine’s College in Raleigh, NC and transferred to College of Southern Maryland (CSM) in La Plata, MD where I studied Criminal Justice.
You may be wondering, “how did she end up in Library Services?” My library journey began in 2012 when I worked as a part-time clerical aide with the public library after school at CSM. Little did I know that I’d be hooked and wondering how I could do more and how far I could go in the library world. After starting out in a small public library branch, then being promoted to a larger branch, I decided that I wanted to work with children in a school setting. I ended up helping out in the library at my former elementary school. Boy did I feel old! The environment hadn’t changed at all! My next library job was at the Library of Congress where I had a temporary tour of duty. While at the Library of Congress, I realized that I missed the academic side of Libraries, so that’s what brought me here to the lovely campus of George Washington University.
As a new member of Himmelfarb, please tell us a little about your current position and what you do?
As a new member to the Himmelfarb family, the staff have all welcomed me with open arms as your new Cataloging & Metadata Specialist. In my position, I perform para-professional copy-cataloging. I locate and evaluate print and electronic bibliographic records from the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) and add them to Himmelfarb’s Integrated Library System (catalog); making edits and corrections to records as necessary, and ensuring accuracy. I collaborate with the Acquisitions & Resource Sharing Librarian and work alongside the Metadata and Scholarly Communications Librarian.
What made you want to work at Himmelfarb?
I never initially planned to work at a medical or health sciences library, but science, mainly Anatomy, was one of my favorite courses junior year in high school. So when I got word of an opportunity at Himmelfarb, I jumped at the chance. I thought to myself: “Health Sciences and cataloging! In the nation’s capital? Oh, that has my name written all over it!”
What is your favorite part of your job?
Currently, my favorite part of the job is actually learning to tackle the more difficult records that need “beefing up.” Or simply just receiving tons of different materials every day! You wouldn’t believe some of the medical titles I come across daily. Also I enjoy inputting student and faculty publications and abstracts into the Institutional Repository (Health Sciences Research Commons). The best thing about working here at Himmelfarb are my colleagues. They are some of the most collaborative, welcoming, understanding, helpful people I’ve ever met in my entire life.
What’s been the biggest challenge?
As contradictory as it may seem, keeping the flow of processing both the print and electronic collections going may or may not be my biggest challenge depending on the day. It’s a “can’t live with it and can’t live without it” type of thing. One other challenge I face is feeling like I have to get everything done in one day. By the end of the day my brain is fully exercised. I’m basically trying to race against myself.
What do you do for fun when you’re not working?
As far as fun goes outside of work, I really enjoy relaxing! I’m a little handy with a paint brush too. I’m no Picasso, but I believe art is whatever you want it to be, and creating soothes the soul. I like to paint things that I feel inspired by and, I am inspired to paint when I overcome an obstacle in my life. When I’m not relaxing on the couch watching Netflix, I love the company of my friends and family. I’ve picked up the habit of collecting new recipes or foods to try, so I like to pretend that I am an aspiring chef. And what girl doesn’t like to shop for new clothes!!! Sometimes I’m a girly girl at the mall and other times I’m at the gym. Who knows - maybe this summer I’ll learn to ride ATV’s.