In the fast-paced rush of today’s world, one constant remains at the center of the community in Granby— the Granby Public Library. For decades, the library has served as a valuable resource for curious learners of all ages: a place to peruse its shelves in hopes of finding a new book to enjoy, access the internet, or stop by to catch up with friends over a game of chess.
Recently, under a new lead, the public library is looking to extend its influence on the younger population and bolster its Teen and Children’s department. The Drummer recently spoke with Granby’s new Teen and Children’s Librarian, Michele Kaminski, to discuss the role of the library, its aims for the future, and to welcome her as part of the Granby community.
As a librarian, Kaminski began her career in Windsor after initially studying to become a teacher. Her interest in librarianship was heightened when presented the opportunity to plan a summer reading program for preschool children, and she followed up by pursuing a Master’s in Library Science. Kaminski’s experience as a librarian has taken her to multiple towns including South Windsor and West Hartford. And while these were all valuable work experiences, Kaminski cited her desire to return to a sense of community and to work in a teen environment were motivators to work in a town such as Granby.
When asked about some of the appeals Granby boasted, Kaminski, who began her position at the Granby Public Library in July, cited Granby’s respect for the community agenda paired with its sustained small town feel that manages to accommodate new ideas and programs. Kaminski also mentioned that the opportunity to introduce new ideas is especially useful as she hopes to incorporate a variety of novel clubs and programs. Granby residents could possibly see a writing club, a high school book club and more volunteer opportunities for teenagers through something like a Teen Advisory Board implemented in the future. In introducing these new programs, it is Kaminski’s aim to improve the outreach of the Teen and Children’s library and engage a wider audience—particularly teens—and provide a range of opportunities for children and teens to develop applicable skills in the process.
As a librarian, Kaminski addressed the many rewarding aspects of her position. Among these is story time with the young children which serves as time to indulge in a fun story while also setting the stage for children to develop skills such as word recognition and taking turns. She aspires to create a library where kids are comfortable exploring its contents, or even just sitting and socializing without the fear of being disruptive.
Although she may have only begun in July, Michele Kaminski has already achieved incredible progress for the Granby Public Library’s Teen and Children’s department. She aims to create an even more engaging and inclusive environment in the future.