Lisa Metzer is currently working towards her doctoral degree in library science at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She is one of six students who are benefitting from a grant by the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program, which was established to address the shortage in doctoral-level educators qualified to train librarians in working with scientific data and information. Before enrolling in this program, Lisa worked as a Learning Librarian at the National Geographic Society and as Adult Services Librarian at Wells Branch Community Library.
What made you decide to pursue your PhD in Library Science?
Five years ago, when I was in my masters program for library science, I realized I wanted to eventually teach at the university or college level. I knew I wanted to be a professor. I have always had a love for instruction.
What role does technology play in your education?
Technology plays a big role right now. One project we are working on is to build a curriculum for a class. The class will be taught in the spring. We are using open source software to build the curriculum for a course management system. The class will be able to be taught in the classroom or through distance education.
How do you think the role of a librarian is changing?
I think the emphasis is a little different today. The emphasis is now on information delivered through web-based technology. Right now many library schools are completely or partially online. Another huge change is that information is not only being delivered online but being produced online. We are finding new ways to manage this information. And all of this means that information literacy skills are more important now than ever.
Can you tell me why you gravitated towards training and instruction?
Part of my personality comes alive when I am training. I like communicating information. I like to find a way to teach that makes sense for other people.