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Jo Ann Drolshagen

I decided to return to college three years ago when I was promoted to a Reference Desk position in the public library where I am employed. I work in the Children’s department of the library and find that working with children is fun and rewarding. I enjoy getting middle school students information for their reports and hearing from their mothers how my efforts has made the difference in their grades. It is exciting to see how the faces of our youngest patrons light up when I can find a copy of their favorite video whether it is The Wiggles, Bob the Builder, or perhaps, for their big sisters, the latest Mary Kate and Ashley movie. With the satisfaction I was receiving at my position, it was clear that the obvious move would be to receive the training to become a professional Children’s Librarian.

Since I dropped out of college twenty years ago, I needed to get my undergraduate degree first before I could specialize. Literature was the obvious choice for my major; I am passionate about reading. My husband likes to tease me about being a “bookworm.”

The evaluative skills that I learned in my Literature classes are put to a practical application when I lead the Adult book discussion group at work; I can critically judge books to be chosen for the group. The ability to create questions to keep the discussion moving along was also honed during my classes at Ramapo. Literature, therefore, is important on both a personal and professional level for me.

The internship that I had the honor of working on in the Fall of 2003 was the highlight of my education at Ramapo: The Harriet Jacobs Papers at Pace University. Working with the noted historian Dr Jean Fagin Yellin, I had the opportunity of first hand experience in the field of academic publishing.

Currently, I am enrolled in Long Island University’s Palmer School of Information and Library Science program. I expect to earn a Master’s in this specialty in 2006.