Adrienne Granitz retires today after six years of service as the manager of the Library’s Service Desk. Adrienne’s library career included librarian at 4 elementary schools in Western Pennsylvania, at Piedmont Virginia Community College (PVCC), and the Roger Milliken Textile Library at Institute of Textile Technology (ITT). After ITT closed, Adrienne worked for 1 year as Director of National College and then for 2 years in Electrophysiology of the Department of Medicine at the University of Virginia.
Did you know what you were getting into when you accepted the job?
When I accepted the job, it was a circulation desk, of which I was very familiar because that is what I did for 17 years at PVCC. I figured it was more of the same and I knew that I could do it. I had no idea that it would transition to what it is now.
Through the process, what were the most important components for managing change?
To assure my staff that we were all capable of learning new things, to convey enthusiasm, and to make sure that staff realized the importance of the changes. What we were taking on was a valuable component for the whole library in that we were freeing up time for the professional staff to do new and better things for the Health System community.
Libraries have evolved quite a bit since I started out in the late 1960s, before anything was automated. With automation, libraries now can provide resources to their patrons at their desktop, which has given us the opportunity to weed much of our print collection and repurpose that space. Again, when I came here, I managed the circulation desk, and had staff that spent a lot of time checking out and shelving print materials. Today, time spent handling print materials has diminished greatly to the point that much of our time is spent answering questions that were once handled at the former Information Desk and Learning Resources Desk. We evolved.
On Friday, I will walk out of a library that is completely different than the library it was when I came to work on my first day. And six years from now it will be completely different than it is today. We all need to embrace that change and see it as a learning and growing opportunity.
Your thoughts about the Library?
This library is about embracing everybody’s strengths and pushing it to its limit. It’s also about making sure that each individual who works here knows that they have support, that they will get the training they need, and that if things don’t work out as planned, we can always go back to the drawing board. The Library pushes to see what else. It’s not doing typical library things, but that’s okay, as it keeps things interesting.
I have loved working in libraries and knew that I wanted to be a librarian since 10th grade, when I was a library aide. My high school librarian, whom I am still in contact with, gave me the love of libraries and the work that we do there. Throughout my career, I knew that I was making a difference. I will miss that. What I’m most looking forward to is the freedom to not be tethered to a day-to-day job. I want to wake up in the middle of the week and think, I want to go visit my sister in Pennsylvania. I can do that now. I’m not planning on taking long European trips; I just want the freedom to do what I want to do when I want to do it.
I wish the best for this library and hope that it keeps growing and finding new ways to help those that need it the most. It’s been a great place to work and I’ll really miss it.
All of us at the Health Sciences Library thank Adrienne for her service and wish her all the happiness she can find in her retirement years.