New research librarian serves School of Pharmacy
As of spring semester 2023, as a Research and Education Librarian, Jessica Jones works to support the research and educational needs of the students, faculty, and staff on the Medical College of Virginia (MCV) Campus. In her role as liaison to the VCU School of Pharmacy, Jones will engage directly with School of Pharmacy faculty, students, and staff to continue offering robust support for research and instruction services.
Jones began working at VCU Libraries in 2021 as the Resource Sharing and Delivery Coordinator. She oversaw the daily operations of the Resource Sharing and Delivery Department and focused on building partnerships with library departments to better serve library user needs. Prior to joining VCU Libraries, Jones served as the Library System Administrative Assistant at ECPI University from 2019-2021. Between August 2018 and April 2019 Jones was the library assistant at the Aquinas Secondary School in Mtwara, Tanzania where she was responsible for organizing and digitizing library collections as well as tutoring students and developing lesson plans.
What particular strengths, skills or training do you bring to VCU that will help you serve schools/programs you are assigned to work with?
As an early career librarian, I bring a fresh perspective on librarianship and library services to VCU. I’m quite open to trying new projects and ideas to better support our students, faculty, and staff. My background in biology helps me “think like a scientist” when it comes to searching for and analyzing health sciences literature, and my prior work in the Access Services Department helped me understand how students and faculty members perceive the libraries and the services that we offer. I also spent a considerable amount of time in graduate school working with the ontologies used in PubMed, which has given me a working familiarity with the way that articles in PubMed are organized. This familiarity informs how I search for relevant articles in PubMed and other health sciences databases.
What are your goals for the spring semester, your first semester as a Research and Education Librarian?
I plan to focus on building relationships with both my fellow librarians and with the faculty in the VCU School of Pharmacy. I want to learn more about the School of Pharmacy’s community and mission so that I can better serve my colleagues and co-learners there. I also plan to refine my research skills and strategies when it comes to databases that are most relevant to the School of Pharmacy: PubMed, SciFinder, Reaxys and more.
How do you describe your working style?
I take a very methodical approach to my work. I prioritize and appreciate getting to know as much as I can about a given topic, and I use that background knowledge to inform my response to the situation or research question at hand. I particularly enjoy bringing together seemingly disparate concepts and finding connections between them in my work. I love collaborating with others and learning from the varied perspectives that they bring to the table.
Please share any observations you have about the unique nature of the programs and people you work with about their unique research/materials challenges present?
Something that I’ve observed about the VCU community at large is the diversity of the students, faculty, and staff. I really like being able to work with such a wealth of interesting people and their perspectives. I see this diversity mirrored in the School of Pharmacy through both the students and faculty and the breadth of programs offered there, as well as their research interests.
Are there particular services or opportunities VCU Libraries provides that you want to stress?
Having come from the Access Services Department, I’d like to share our awesome interlibrary loan and delivery services. We can bring our library resources to your inbox or library of choice, and if we don’t have something, we can request it from another library for you. It’s especially handy for getting access to journal articles from all over the world.
What else should VCU health sciences faculty know about you?
I’m committed to helping our students, faculty and staff succeed. While I’m new to this particular position, I have worked with VCU Libraries’ Access Services Department since 2021 and would be happy to connect you with our wonderful library faculty and staff. If you’re interested in collaborating with me on something, please feel free to reach out. You can find me at firstname.lastname@example.org and (804) 827-1150.