Meet the Staff
Principle Library Assistant
This month’s staff feature is Nicole Ballance, Principle Library Assistant. When I arrived to interview Nicole, I found her at the desk in the children’s section, fielding reference questions from a computer area patron and arranging an inter-library loan for another patron. These activities are just the tip of Nicole’s responsibilities. As Principle Library Assistant, Nicole is supervisor of circulation, which includes training pages and circulation staff, as well as dealing with fines and worn books. She is also in charge of the Library’s Facebook Page, where she will post this newsletter. She enjoys the varied aspects of her job and meeting with fellow Principle Library Assistants to share common challenges and solutions.
Nicole is a life-long New Castle resident. She remembers getting her first library card from Jackie Harrad, our former Youth Services Specialist, and working here while an undergraduate student at the University of Delaware, pursuing a degree in secondary English education. It was while substitute teaching at William Penn High School that Nicole attended a student book club that Sarah Thomas was running. It was at this point that Nicole’s career took a turn. Watching Sarah interact with youth, while discussing literature, Nicole could see her love for literature, teaching, and service take form in a library setting instead of the classroom. Nicole next took a position at West Chester University’s library to explore and expand her library experiences. She has been employed at NCPL for the past 5 years.
Nicole’s proudest accomplishment is her acceptance into a Master of Library and Information Science degree program at Florida State University, and her ongoing feat of working full-time, while going to school full-time. She truly loves being able to directly apply her studies to her daily library work.
With work and school, there is little time for anything else, but Nicole still manages to read for pleasure and run. She and several library staff members recently participated in a 5K for PAWS for People, a program the Friends sponsor here at the library where children read to dogs. Nicole’s favorite genre is Young Adult Literature, with the Harry Potter series taking first place in her best reads category.
As my time with Nicole drew to a close, I was struck by her passion for literature, teaching, and service, and her true love for this library, where she can share her passions. Nicole has found her perfect career, and we have found another outstanding staff member.