Adams Street Branch of BPL welcomes new librarian for children

Kimberley Theodore, Special to the Reporter
Jul. 31, 2014

Meaghan SchwelmMeaghan Schwelm started her first full-time position this summer as a Librarian at the Adams Street branch of the Boston Public Library after working as an intern through Americorps at the Jamaica Plain branch, and most recently at the Education Resource Center library at Boston College.

“Working at the Jamaica Plain Branch and Boston College was a lot of fun. [The experience] made me feel like youth services in a public library was what I wanted to do,” Meaghan Schwelm said.

The 33-year-old Jamaica Plain resident graduated this past May from Simmons College with a masters in Library Science.

“Since I worked full time while I was going to school I did stretch it out and attended Simmons for four years, but that allowed me to get a lot more valuable experience working in libraries,” said Schwelm.  “I do think with as much as I learned a lot from the great professors I had at Simmons you really do learn more on the job.”

Since working at the Adams Street branch, Schwelm has run a few science summer reading programs as well as Tuesday morning preschool story time.

“I think children are incredibly creative people who are very curious and open to trying new things and it’s very wonderful to be around them,” said Schwelm.

Recently Schwelm organized an outdoor story time event in Hemenway Park on Adams Street.

“It was a huge success. It looked like there were about 50 kids,” said Schwelm. “We read a lot of stories, played games and sang, so we were constantly moving which is an important way of keeping the kids interactive and active. I think they had a great time.”  
The experience Schwelm gained from her Children’s Literature course at Simmons College set a strong base for her coming to the Adams Street library.

“In the course we looked a lot at fiction and non-fiction which exposed me to a lot of great authors and illustrators, some who I wasn’t familiar with yet. So when coming to the library I’ve been able to learn so much more quickly with choosing books for story time and doing reference for the children or planning a program,” said Schwelm.

Looking ahead, Schwelm hopes to work more with the community and get feedback on the new creative ideas she has in store for the upcoming months. She also wants like to utilize the garden space at the library to add a children’s garden.

“You get to be more creative in a public library. I think it’s a place that fosters creativity in children and that’s something that’s very important to me so I want to be a part of that,” said Schwelm.

For more summer programs click the Adams Street library calendar link: