Between the Lines: March Member Spotlight
Andrea N. Schorr
Associate Director for Resource Management
UT Health San Antonio Library
What inspired you to become a librarian?
As an undergraduate studying psychology, I took a part-time job in a health sciences library as a bindery clerk. My job at that time was to assist with a large-scale journal binding project. During that time, I learned about all the inner workings of technical services, and about all the detailed work involved in making access to resources possible. As a detail-oriented person, I was intrigued by the nature of the work and the fact that there was a lot of technicalities that required clarification and investigation. After completing my undergraduate degree, my supervisors at that time, convinced me to purse a graduate degree in Library and Information Science. The rest is history!
What is an innovative practice at your library/organization that you’d like to share with others?
Our library hosts an annual History of Medicine presentation and dinner each year. This dinner has taken place in person for well over 20 years. In 2020, we were celebrating the 50th anniversary of our Historical Library. Due to the pandemic, we couldn’t have our 50th anniversary dinner, but we still wanted to do something to commemorate the occasion. In place of our annual dinner, we hosted an online lecture series featuring two timely topics: pandemics and health inequities. The series featured four speaker presentations via Zoom and included an interactive Q&A session. The lecture series was a huge success, we saw record numbers of participation from our local community and as far away as Australia. The virtual lecture series received high praise, and we have continued to host these lectures online throughout the year.
If you could have dinner with three authors (living or dead), who would they be and why?
I would choose Dr. Seuss, Maya Angelou, and C.S. Lewis. I’m extremely diverse in my reading choices and I think this mix of authors would generate some very interesting conversation, complete with enough humor to keep things lighthearted.
What are you reading right now?
I am currently reading The Emotional Life of your Brain by Richard J. Davidson and Sharon Begley, the World Atlas of Coffee by James Hoffmann, and Life’s Journeys According to Mister Rogers by Fred Rogers.
What is your most memorable Texas Library Association Experience?
My most memorable TLA experience has to be my participation in the TALL Texans Leadership Institute in 2016. This opportunity presented itself during a time when I was undergoing a lot of change in my job. I remember thinking this was exactly the opportunity I needed to help navigate the next steps in my career. The institute was amazing and exactly what I needed. The ability to talk openly about my fears, strengths, and weaknesses helped me to grow as a person and as a leader. The friendships that I made were amazing and I still keep in touch with those individuals today. There’s something about being a TALL Texan that motivates me to stay involved with TLA. As someone who is leadership driven, I want to see TLA continue to grow and succeed.
“I am a TLA member because…”
TLA provides a unique platform for networking, education, and collaboration, and brings together librarians across the state to work together for the greater good. Through TLA, libraries have a voice that resonates throughout the state. This voice brings change and provides continuous support for improvement in libraries and librarianship.