When Olin Library doesn’t house a publication
that a student, staff or faculty member needs, it’s the job of Lisa Pinette
to help find it.
Pinette, a library assistant for Access Services in the Interlibrary Loan
Office, borrows and receives journals, articles and audio-visual material
from other libraries. Access Services oversees the public aspect of Olin
Library, ensuring that library patrons are able to find any publications,
DVDs, VHS tapes or CDs they need for research.
“Some of our students may request very obscure books, which only a few
libraries in the country might have, and those can be a challenge to track
down,” Pinette explains. “But on the other hand, we’re getting incoming
requests from other libraries all over the country, which means Wesleyan may
be one of the few holders of that publication.”
Most book-swapping takes place through the CTW Consortium, a reciprocal
partnership between libraries at Wesleyan, Trinity College and Connecticut
College. But when these libraries don’t carry what a patron is looking for,
the Interlibrary Loan Office will look beyond state -- or even national
Wesleyan shares with libraries as far away as California on a daily basis,
and has provided its material to libraries as far across the globe as
“It’s fun to see what books are going out and coming in,” Pinette says. “We
have about five or ten books that are constantly going out, so you know that
Wesleyan is one of the only holders of that item."
Most of these requests are handled through ILLIAD, an interlibrary loan
software that is compatible with the non-profit computer library service
Online Computer Library Center (OCLC). Patrons make requests either through
ILLIAD or directly from WorldCat, a national library catalog produced by
OCLC. The library pays for these services and patrons are not charged any
fees for these services.
Although Pinette spends most of her time in the library’s Access Services
Department, she wears three other hats. During the week, she works an hour
in the morning as an assistant in Reference Department, where she handles
administrative duties and hires and supervises the Government Documents and
Reference student workers. Additionally, at the beginning of each semester,
most of her time is spent processing electronic reserves for the Reserve
Department. When classes are in session, Pinette supervises the Circulation
Department on Sundays. This role includes opening the library, supervising
the student workers at the circulation desks, and answering any circulation
questions from patrons.
“My job is first of its kind in Olin and it is pretty unusual, but I fit a
lot of niches here,” she says. “The best part about working in four
departments is that there is no chance I can ever get bored. It’s never a
Pinette works closely with her colleagues and library assistants Kathy
Stefanowicz and Kate Wolfe; and her supervisor, EunJoo Lee, head of Access
"Lisa is an absolutely
wonderful, capable, fun, and easy person to work with, and the ability to
rotate her time based on the workload required in the library," Lee says.
"She has a talent for adapting to various technologies and has efficiently
managed three different categories of library software, making her one of
the few library staff members who work on many systems in the library. Lisa
is highly valued in each department. She is an absolute one of kind, a
beloved co-worker, and she brings brightness to colleagues and her students
workers in the department."
Pinette, who graduated from Eastern Connecticut State University in 1995,
has a degree in English. During her last two years at ECSU she worked at the
university’s library and caught “the library bug.” She began to follow in
her mother’s footsteps; Jan Grace, who was the children's librarian at the
Library Association of Warehouse Point, Conn. for 28 years.
“Once anyone works in a library, it is all they want to do,” she says,
After college, Pinette worked for a mall-leasing company, but spent her
Sundays working at the Windsor Public Library in the children’s section. She
traded in her public library career for an academic library career at
Wesleyan in 2001.
Pinette, a life-long Connecticut resident, lives in Middletown and enjoys
creating her own holiday cards, knitting, reading, cooking, watching movies
and participating in her favorite “sport” – shopping.