Get To Know Nykia Perez Kibler, the new Convenor of the SLA Embedded Librarians Caucus

This month, Nykia Perez Kibler becomes the new Convenor of the SLA Embedded Librarians Caucus. Nadine Anderson sat down with Nykia, who chatted with us about her work, what she likes to do for fun outside of work, and her plans for the Caucus.

Nadine Anderson: What is your job title?
Nykia Perez Kibler: My current title is Director of Information Management.

NA: Where do you work and how long have you worked there?
NPK: I have worked in this role with ever evolving titles and responsibilities at the the University of Pennsylvania’s Population Studies Center since 2001.

NA: What are your main job duties? What groups are you embedded in?
NPK: My main contribution is to assist in the facilitation of research and scholarly output by (1) maintaining data about our researchers that can be repurposed for grant applications; (2) providing research assistance in the form of literature searches, proofreading, or fact checking/data gathering for either manuscripts or grant applications; (3) disseminating the results of our researchers scholarly activities (publications, honors, awards, news appearances) via our website, working paper series, social media and tracking publication metrics; and (4) building websites, designing graphics and documentation for conferences, working groups, and research projects.

NA: What do you love about what you do?
NPK: It is not possible to be bored because there is always a lot of work to do and it is always varied. I am not sure how I would fair in a position with a narrowly focused role. The variety of needs and skills required to meet the needs of our researchers challenges me to learn new things and to creatively solve problems, which is an ideal environment for me.

NA: What do you like to do for fun outside of work?
NPK: This Fall I signed up to become an adult Girl Scout co-leader for my daughter’s troop which has been fun. I have met some interesting people and get to spend more time outside which I need to do more of plus I get to spend quality time with my daughter. Bird watching and visiting public gardens is something I do for fun as well.

NA: What is the one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?
NPK: I am an ISA Certified Arborist and co-lead a volunteer based community nonprofit that educates and empowers people to care for the urban environment primarily by planting and caring for street trees.

NA: What are the key things that have made you successful as an embedded librarian?
NPK: Trying to keep abreast of the researchers projects and interests of our scholars is helpful for learning about where their research is going and about what services might be useful. Finding ways to accomplish tasks with out of the box solutions when necessary to meet needs or to solve a particular problem. Being a “yes” person and finding your niche and the ways you might be able to add value to a project with minimal effort on the part of the researchers. Flexibility and adaptability have been essential to me and my team and not getting tied to a particular way of doing something or particular services we’ve devised can afford new and useful perspectives to ensure people benefit from our skills. Asking questions and not being afraid to try something different can be helpful as well.

NA: What will your main priorities be as Convenor/Communications Lead of the SLA Embedded Librarians Caucus?
NPK: I am hoping to help caucus members get the support they need from SLA and the caucus by enabling programming that will suit their interests and that will ultimately be useful for them with their input and involvement of course.

End of interview

Thank you Nykia!

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