The McGill Library would like to give a warm welcome to our newest Liaison Librarian for East Asian Studies Studies and Political Science, Hye-jin! In honour of this new addition, we spoke with Hye-jin to get to know her a bit more!
Q: What is your history with libraries? What inspired you to become a librarian?
Hye-jin Juhn (HJ): At the time I first thought about becoming a librarian, I was a Korean language professor at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California. As beautiful as the environment was, the place I felt most comfortable in was the library. I wanted to be part of the system that collects, stores, and disseminates information. I wanted to contribute to education in ways other than teaching, for example, by helping people with their self-education.
Q: Why did you choose to come work at McGill?
HJ: After more than a decade as the East Asian Studies Librarian at Notre Dame, I wanted new opportunities for growth. McGill seemed to be an ideal new environment to seek such opportunities in. Not only that the University is internationally renowned, the McGill Library is also reputable, especially among the East Asian librarians, for its innovative project, Ming Qing Women’s Writings. More than anything, I was impressed with the services and professional activities of the HSSL librarians that I learned from their publications and the library website. I had no doubt that this was a group I wanted to be part of.
Q: Do you have any interesting facts about yourself that you’d like to share?
HJ: I have important educational experience that doesn’t appear on my CV. After dropping out of my Ph.D. program, I considered becoming a carpenter. I consulted an administrator at a community college about whether it would be suitable for someone like me, who couldn’t do much heavy lifting, to pursue such a career. She told me that carpenters work collaboratively and there was room for every size and body weight in the carpentry world. In my beginner carpentry course, I learned to carefully plan and follow a sequence of actions for the best outcome. I also learned, in each action, to leave plenty of room for readjustments and mistakes. Even though my dream to become a carpenter never materialized, the skills from the experience have become important assets that I apply in everything I do at work and, of course, at home.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
HJ: I’m grateful to have the opportunity to serve the McGill Community as a member of the group of talented and dedicated library colleagues. I’m looking forward to contributing to all the library initiatives (such as the Fiat Lux Project). I’m also looking forward to the many celebrative moments ahead of us.
The Library is excited to have Hye-jin join the team of Liaison Librarians, a full list of which can be found here.