This fall, we have two remote programs happening with our interns and volunteers. We introduced you to our foreign legal gazette program participants last month, and during the next three days, we will introduce you to our interns and volunteers working with Congressional Research Service bill summaries in our remote metadata program. This program is a continuation of last spring’s successful project.
To organize our work, we have three teams divided geographically across the country, each with a team lead. Our first group is the team on the East Coast, led by Danielle Pytko. This is Danielle’s third semester working with us and her first as a team lead. Danielle is a graduate of the library and information science program at Simmons University. She has worked in public and academic libraries and has a B.A. in English from Mount Holyoke College.
What is your favorite project you’ve worked on?
I’ve participated in two Law Library of Congress internship programs—the creative digital projects program and the metadata program—and greatly enjoyed my experiences in each of them. They also pair very well together. I experienced digital archives from two different points of view: a patron’s point of view while researching for a blog post in the creative digital projects program and from a an archivist’s point of view as a metadata intern and from a professional point of view while working as a metadata intern. This experience gave me a valuable perspective on how researchers’ needs guide the work of library employees.
Why do you keep coming back to the Library of Congress?
I am in awe of all of the history that the Library contains and the work that goes into preserving that history and making it accessible to the public. I am eager to use my skills to contribute to that work.
What is the coolest thing you’ve come across while working with us?
In my first semester as a metadata intern, I worked on summaries of bills introduced in the House of Representatives in 1969. The variety of topics that the bill summaries addressed was interesting—everything from the military draft to bees—and a great insight into that time in history.
What are you hoping to do in the library field?
I am excited about the possibilities of digital platforms for the discoverability, accessibility, and preservation of library materials. I would be especially interested in working as a product manager or in a product owner role where I could contribute to the ideation, development, and implementation of new features for a library’s digital products and services. I also enjoy storytelling and would be interested in a marketing role where I can communicate the benefits of library resources, services, and events to the public.
Libraries contain many resources white document history. I enjoy working to make those resources more accessible for everyone.
And now, meet the team!
Matt Burke is a New York native who holds an Associate of Arts (A.A.) degree from Suffolk Community College, a B.A. degree in history from Stony Brook University, and is currently in pursuit of an M.L.I.S. at the University at Buffalo. Matt has always had a passion for learning history, as well as for politics, and hopes to pursue a career handling collections and archives at the Library of Congress or National Archives. His interests include reading, watching sports, and spending time with family.
Diana Ferguson is currently working towards a master of science in information degree at Florida State University. She holds an M.B.A. from Texas A&M International University and a B.A. in psychology from the University of Central Florida. Diana is also certified as a ballet barre fitness instructor. “Solar powered,” she loves living in Florida with her amazing husband and son, and cheering on her favorite hockey team. She loves learning the ways technology can be implemented to solve problems by radically improving processes and making the impossible possible. Working as an intern with the Smithsonian Cultural Rescue Initiative, Diana helped direct FEMA to the most up-to-date information on cultural heritage institutions in the event of a disaster. She loves working with metadata, and in that context, has contributed work to some of our nation’s oldest laws in the Statutes at Large, the American State Papers, and congressional bill summaries for the Law Library of Congress.
Bethany Greenho is currently pursuing a master’s degree in library and information science with a focus on archives at the University of Maryland. Her interests include arts archives, accessibility, and primary source literacy. In her free time, Bethany enjoys visiting museums, attending the theater, and learning new craft skills.
Taylor Hiltz will be graduating with an M.L.I.S. degree from the University of Denver in November 2022. She also holds a B.S. in criminal justice from Virginia Commonwealth University and has worked in law enforcement and public and academic libraries. Although she has spent much of her life in Virginia, Taylor’s family has lived in Idaho for generations, she calls “home.” Taylor has two dogs, and in her spare time she loves to read, learn new skills, complete home improvement projects, kayak, and travel. She is passionate about metadata, digital literacy, and digital asset management.
Ashley Jones is a Brooklyn native who holds a B.A. degree from SUNY Albany, where she double majored in political science and criminal justice, with a minor in Africana studies. She is an aspiring archivist, passionate about documenting public memory through photography and oral history. In the future, after attaining an M.L.I.S., she hopes to work with ethnographic archives. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her cats, studying herbalism, and collaging.
Jacob Neal is a native of Florida and is currently a graduate student at the University of Missouri, completing a M.L.I.S. degree with an archival emphasis. He has a B.A. degree in history from the University of Florida. In his spare time, he enjoys reading presidential biographies, traveling to presidential libraries and historic sites, and attending various sporting events.
Lily Nisbet grew up and attended school in Maryland and in Edinburgh, Scotland. She is a recent graduate of Elizabethtown College with a degree in philosophy with a focus in the humanities. When not working, Lily enjoys Irish step dancing and reading. She currently resides in Maryland with her rescue golden retriever who believes he is the size of a chihuahua.
Kaci Pelias currently dwells in Central Florida, but her heart lives in Texas. She has a B.A. in playwriting and a minor in arts administration from the University of Texas at Austin, and is currently pursuing an M.L.I.S. from the University of South Florida. She spends a lot of time at theme parks and enjoys reading, cross-stitching, and drinking coffee. Kaci loves working with children, advocating against book censorship, and learning more about metadata.
Cait Ross is wrapping up her final year of her M.L.I.S. studies at Simmons University. She holds an undergraduate degree in English literature from the University of Edinburgh. When not on duty as a law library assistant, she can be found drinking coffee with her husband, practicing Serbian, or doodling in her planner. She aims to pursue a career in academic and/or special libraries.
Rebecca (Becky) Zarrella is entering her final year of the M.L.I.S. program at the University of Maryland. Her academic interests include open data, digital access and literacy, ethics in artificial intelligence, and the use of assistive technology and universal design to promote information equity. She loves talking accessibility, algorithms, and automation. Becky lives near Baltimore with her husband and their two perfect dogs. In her free time she likes to read, write, play piano, garden, and paint.
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