New teen services librarian at the Dorchester County Library

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New teen services librarian at the Dorchester County Library

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Earlier last month, Elizabeth Neal was introduced as the new Teen Services Librarian at the Dorchester County public library. Her job includes starting and overseeing  programs at the library for teens and helping people find books.

“My favorite part of my job so far is helping people of all ages find the next book they’re going to read,” said Neal, or Miss Liz, as she prefers to be called, “Books have changed my life, so it’s exciting to think that I could make a difference in someone’s life by placing the right book in their hands.”

Miss Liz realized she wanted to be a librarian by shadowing librarians in different areas. She decided to become a teen services librarian to help people keep the love of books throughout their lives.

“I decided to become a teen librarian because I want to share my love of books with the people who need it most,” Miss Liz explained, “I’ve never met a child who doesn’t enjoy books, but I know quite a few adults who never read for fun. Most of those adults stopped enjoying books as teenagers; I want to inspire teens to keep loving books or to love books again.”

Miss Liz believes that it is important for teenagers and young adults to read because books can give them the tools they need to change the world.

Reading encourages imagination,” Miss Liz elaborated, “With a book, you can learn more about the world around you or leave it behind entirely. Reading also encourages empathy, because readers are placed in the shoes of characters with different perspectives from their own. Books are also a powerful source of knowledge. With imagination, empathy, and knowledge, I think young people have the power to do anything. They can change the world. Plus, reading a good book is a lot of fun.”

Miss Liz believes library programs are important because they are a way to bring the community together.   

“Library programs and events are free opportunities for enjoyment, learning, and engaging with other members of the community,” said Miss Liz, “With the many advantages of technology comes the side effect of isolation. These programs and events bring people together.”

Some of the new library programs that Miss Liz is starting are monthly movie, fandom and anime clubs, and teen tuesday hangouts. She is also starting a book club about real issues.

Miss Liz thinks it is important for people to read books about real issues so that people can get different perspectives on problems in the world.

“Books allow readers to live a life other than their own for a time,” stated Miss Liz, “When characters face real challenges, readers can get a new and closer perspective of that challenge. These books make you think about the issues differently. Reading a book about a real issue also provides an opportunity to talk about that issue with others. Those discussions can bring about change for the better.”

Miss Liz hopes that her new programs will help bring teenagers to the library to meet friends with similar interests and find new books that they will enjoy. More information on new library programs and upcoming events  can be found here.

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