Today we’re catching up with Samantha Minnis, who experienced the Central Michigan University Libraries as a student, a student worker, and a permanent employee. Samantha started as a library student worker on the very first day of her freshman year and worked here until she graduated in 2005. In 2007 she began working as a permanent library employee, first spending a year in the Clarke Historical Library, then four years in our interlibrary loan department, before finishing as our Coordinator of Reference Operations in 2014.
Samantha grew up in Mount Pleasant and has been around CMU her entire life. Her grandfather, grandmother, and mother all graduated from CMU and her mother is currently an Assistant Professor in the CMU School of Music. Consequently, Samantha was on campus a lot growing up and was always comfortable with it. She enjoyed going to college in her hometown because it was a good mix of new experiences and a familiar family environment. Samantha was in Mount Pleasant for the CMU homecoming parade on October 16th and enjoyed being with her nephew and nieces, just as she enjoyed going to the parades with her grandfather years ago.
While at CMU, Samantha studied Anthropology and Art History. She started with Anthropology because she wanted to study archaeology (and have Indiana Jones-like adventures), but eventually got interested in Forensic and Medical Anthropology and specialized in Biological Anthropology.
Samantha left CMU and moved to Grand Rapids in 2014. In 2016 she earned her Masters in Library and Information Science from Kent State University. Since then, she’s worked in public and academic libraries and is currently the Social Sciences Liaison librarian at Grand Valley State University. There she teaches students about information literacy and helps them with their research. She is one of the many people in that library supporting students during their college experience. It’s a nice convergence of her previous library experiences and her Anthropology background from CMU.
When it comes to hobbies and interests outside of work, Samantha says, “I officially have too many hobbies.” She loves to knit and cross stitch and bake. She also loves hiking around west Michigan and going to Lake Michigan as often as she can, because it’s really beautiful in all four seasons. She lives with her boyfriend, Mark, and their two cats, Barnaby and Maud, and their dog, Pongo.
As much as Samantha enjoyed her time at CMU, those of us who worked with her enjoyed it as well. We miss her but are happy to know she’s doing well in Grand Rapids!