Center Snapshot: Kim Montenyohl
Image above: Kim Montenyohl is available to answer technical questions from books or new media in her new job as emerging technology librarian at NASA Langley. Photo credit: NASA/Sean Smith
By: Amy Johnson
In order to reach more people in new ways, the center's technical library has added a new employee to its roster.
Kim Montenyohl started as the emerging technologies librarian in October. She graduated with a master's degree in Library and Information Science from Syracuse University earlier this year, and she has found the acclimation from upstate New York to Hampton an easy one, mainly due to the pleasant weather and welcoming people at NASA Langley.
Already in her short time here, Montenyohl has noticed that employees don't take advantage of the technical library as they should, and she wants to improve that.
"I want people at Langley to understand that we are here for them and that every question is important to us, no matter how crazy or insignificant it sounds, as long as the answer matters to them," she said.
Montenyohl, who has interned with the Library of Congress and library of the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, said she has noticed a growing trend where, as more information becomes available, people assume they are responsible for finding their own answers to their own questions.
For example, she said, "If they can’t find an article they are looking for, instead of calling us, they might just use a different article."
Her advice: "You don’t have to try and find everything yourself. That’s what we are here for."
Montenyohl is at Langley to help answer questions, but she is also here to investigate new trends in technology and social media that the technical library can utilize, such as YouTube and phone applications, to make technical materials more accessible to people who are traveling, teleworking or offsite.
She's currently looking into creating an instant message service in which employees can chat online with librarians. She may soon travel around the center, giving demonstrations of the library’s electronic services, such as Langley Google.
The position is a nice fit for Montenyohl, who after several years of pursuing a writing and editing career, decided that she prefers "the actual sharing of information rather than the production of it."
"I feel like it's important to give back in some way," she said. "That’s probably why I became a librarian. It's important to me to help share and spread knowledge because I've been given so much of it."
When she's not working on emerging technologies, Montenyohl is staying busy unpacking and looking for a place to swing dance.
"I've been dancing most of life," she said. "Take me to a ballet, and I'm a happy girl."
She also said that she watches all the dancing shows on television. Her favorite is "So You Think You Can Dance."
"In college I experimented with ballroom and contemporary dancing, but in 2006 I started taking swing dance lessons and just fell in love," Montenyohl said. "I'm hoping to get involved in it here in Hampton Roads, so I don't have to keep driving home (to Washington D.C.) to dance."
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