Things You Never Knew About Your Library

Customer, Staff, and Library Stories

Meet Andrea Callan – A Librarian Traveler!

My name is Andrea Callan and I’ve been a Reference Librarian at the Scheben Branch since August 2020. You will often see me working at the reference desk or delivering books as part of curbside delivery. I grew up just across the Ohio River in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. My very first “library job” was as a summer intern in the children’s department at the Lawrenceburg Public Library District. I volunteered there every summer from 5th grade until 11th grade. I got the chance to help kids find books, sign up for summer reading, and read for the occasional Storytime. It helped spark my interest in libraries that continued into the future.

After graduating high school, I went to Ivy Tech Community College and got an Associate’s Degree in Business Administration and then moved to Evansville, Indiana to attend the University of Southern Indiana. I stayed there for about 1.5 years and then finally settled at Northern Kentucky University. In 2009 I graduated from NKU with a Bachelor in English Literature. The following year I began working part-time at the Scheben Branch as a Page. Eventually, I moved over to the Main Library and worked in the Reference Department.

In the 3 years I worked at BCPL my co-workers encouraged me with their support and inspired me to make the Library a part of my career. My co-workers are the reason I love BCPL so much. Eventually, I decided to go back to school for a Master’s in Library Science so I could become a Librarian. I had lived most of my life in the Greater Cincinnati area. However, on a whim, I decided to apply to a graduate school in Ireland. Ireland holds a special place in my heart because my family originally comes from Ireland. Much to my surprise, I was accepted into the University College Dublin’s Master of Library and Information Studies program. I was moving to Ireland!

I spent one amazing year studying in Ireland. I met people from all over the world. I learned a lot about Irish culture, did a lot of traveling through Europe, and had one of the most life-changing experiences of my life. One of the things I love about Europe is how easy it is to travel. In my time there I traveled to France, Great Britain, Wales, and Northern Ireland. I also did a lot of traveling through much of Ireland. The Cliffs of Moher was my favorite place I trekked in Ireland.

I’m also a fan of visiting odd places so in the year I was living abroad I visited the St. Michan’s Church crypt in Dublin and touched the hand of a mummy which was a few hundreds-year old! Another interesting trip I took was to visit the tunnel network of the Paris Catacombs, which is the home to millions of skeletal remains buried beneath the streets of Paris. Sadly, library jobs are scarce in Ireland so after living there for a year and graduating with First Class Honors, I made my way back to the United States. What an adventure, it’s been over 6 years and I still miss Ireland! I was happy to be home with my family, but I missed all the friends I had made during my time there. Though I moved back to the US, I didn’t return to Northern Kentucky yet but landed in Charlotte, North Carolina. I spent the next several years working as a Librarian and Programmer at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. This opportunity gave me the chance to broaden my customer service skills, work with a diverse community, and grow as a Librarian. At the beginning of this year I decided I needed a change, I had been living by myself in Charlotte for over 5 years and had begun to miss my family and Cincinnati. Luckily for me, a Librarian position opened up at the Scheben Branch and I began the next chapter of my career in August of 2020.

When I’m not at work I like to spend time with my family. I have a 13-pound cat named, Chester and a 3.5-pound chihuahua, named Agnes. I also enjoy watching British crime dramas and Chinese Fantasy television shows, also known as xianxia or wuxia (check out the Untamed on Netflix as a recommendation). I also love to read manga and urban fantasy.

One last thing, a couple of years after I moved back to the US I decided to see how “Irish” I really was, and much to my surprise I’m not as Irish as I thought (only 10%, I’m mostly British/Scottish)! That’s okay, I still feel Irish. Slán! (Translates to “be healthy” and Irish for goodbye).

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