Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Dwight Hunter - The Stars at KLIC: Journey Story of our Staff

By Dwight Hunter

The journey I want to tell the world began three years ago. It is a journey that lives in this realm: no matter where you are in life or how old you are, obtaining the necessary education and degree is not a pipe dream.

Since the mid-1990s, in my mind, I was a librarian. I worked in the reference department, answered reference questions, and worked with faculty about getting library resources. I thought to myself: I am a librarian. After all, I held a (non-library) master’s degree from the great Kansas University. What else mattered?

Then, a new dean of library services came into town. I was told I was performing professional work without the appropriate title or degree. Because, alas, to truly be a librarian, one must have an ALA-accredited master’s degree. So, I was promoted to a full-time librarian position, and I signed a contract with the college that I would get my ALA-accredited master’s in a specified amount of time or else.  No pressure or anything.

And as I began my journey as a graduate student in information science – I realized my errors. There were things I had no clue about in my profession. Information science is a malleable degree. Everything has information content.

I researched micro-finance and micro-credit, digital divide, marketing plans, leadership theory, Twitter, information science theories and applications, bibliographic control, metadata, information schemas, information technology applications, religion and the American South, project management and PMBOK, data management plans, ArcGIS and map-making layers, and so much more. Wow, just wow!

What a tremendous learning experience! And I learned what information science theory I used to answer reference questions. I didn’t know before; I do now.

I am a much better librarian; a much stronger library instructor, and a more knowledgeable contributor to KLIC discussions.

As my UTK graduate school journey comes full circle, and a new journey begins for me, I need to thank people (profusely). First and foremost, my parents, my wife and children: without their support this journey would never have left the starting gate.  And to Dean Susan L. Jennings; Drs. Fannie Hewlett, Kim McCormick, Mosunmola George-Taylor; everyone on the KLIC staff; my UTK classmates and professors; and my friends far and near – thank you!

Dwight’s passions, community service, awards, and presentations:
Avid sports fan (debunking the myth that male librarians don’t like sports)
Volunteer advocate for children and youth
Supporting my family and their life work

Community Service
President, Hamilton County Council of PTAs
Executive Officer, Tennessee Congress of Parents and Teachers, Inc.
Member of Tennessee Library Association, American Library Association, Geoscience Information Society, and Project Management Institute

2015 HW Wilson Fellow, University of Tennessee School of Information Sciences
USA Freedom Corps Call to Service Award for certified 4,000+ individual volunteer hours
Hamilton County Commission Certificate of Appreciation
National PTA Honorary Life Member

Hunter, D. and J. Fuentes. "Nonprofits, 501c3's, and Elections", Chattanooga, 2015.
Hunter, D. and W. Brown. "Engaging Men in Education" Chattanooga, 2015.
Warren, L., D. Hunter, and C. Robichaud. "Campus Collaboration through Marketing and Outreach" ROCC Summer Academy, 2014.
Hunter, D. "Social Media and Non-profits" Nashville, 2013
Hunter, D. "Parenting and Social Media" Nashville-Memphis-Knoxville-Johnson City, 2011

University of Tennessee-Knoxville, School of Information Science
MSIS Candidate for Graduation, May 12, 2016

1 comment:

Paul Ray said...

Who is that big guy standing on your right? That cannot be the tiny child that once ran in and out of East Campus!