n00b Blogger: Introducing Michelle

Hello THL Blog Followers and Newcomers,

I am starting my first full week of school (@UMSI ) and work (@THL ) and am starting to step in as the main blogger for the THL News Blog.  I wanted to introduce myself and give you a bit of background so you can get an idea of what kinds of topics and health sciences related news I am most likely to share with you over the next two years.

“Bascom Mall” by afagen (2008) CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

My path to Michigan was not a straight shot nor was it a complete surprise detour for my higher education journey.  I began with a Brain and Cognitive Sciences B.S. degree  at the University of Rochester and realized that my interest in how and why people learn could be best satisfied by pursuing this topic in graduate school.  After searching through education doctoral programs, I decided to apply to Educational Psychology programs as they would allow me to study the intersection of sociocultural, cognitive, and design-based theories of learning.  I earned by M.S. and Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2009 and 2012, respectively.  Most of my research examined the social and cultural contexts of adolescent identity development with a specific focus on the transition to college and the effects transitions have on issues of identity development.

Throughout my undergraduate and graduate school career I worked at academic libraries on my respective campuses.  I began as a circulation desk assistant at Rush Rhees Library at the University of Rochester and was honored to serve my final two years at Wisconsin as the Head Student Supervisor for the School of Education’s MERIT library.  I bring a little over a decade of user-experience focused work in libraries to my current position as the University Library Associate for THL.

“Rush Rhees Library” by RL Hyde (2013) CC BY-SA 2.0

I am interested in exploring academic librarianship, health informatics, and teaching and learning in higher education settings.  The evolving curriculum model at UMMS is particularly intriguing and a topic you may see a lot more of in the coming months.  This article in the Chronicle of Higher Education about the University of Maryland (my home state!) School of Medicine’s new course focusing specifically on research and critical thinking provides another perspective about reasons for changing the traditional medical school education model.

I’m excited about the opportunity to serve as the primary blogger for the THL blog and look forward to sharing more with you soon!


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