Wednesday, 26 August 2020 13:48

Jessica Collogan named dean of Library Services at UNC Pembroke

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Jessica Collogan named dean of Library Services at UNC Pembroke UNCP

PEMBROKE — Jessica Collogan, an accomplished research library leader, has been named dean of Library Services at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke. Collogan’s appointment was approved unanimously by the Board of Trustees. 

She brings more than 20 years of unique experience in corporate, academic, public and special libraries as well as learning resource centers, most recently serving as director of the Carl Swisher Library at Jacksonville University in Jacksonville, Florida.

“Ms. Collogan will bring fresh, innovative and exciting ideas to this position and is well-suited to advance the mission of the university throughout our service region,” said interim Provost Zoe Locklear. 

“She understands current trends and best practices in higher education and academic libraries and has a clear vision for the future of library services. Integral to this vision is her emphasis on student engagement and outreach, both to the campus community, but also to the public-facing aspect of the library. Ms. Collogan will be a strong advocate for library services.”

Collogan, who was selected following a national search, said she is ready to embark on this next stage of her career at the Mary Livermore Library. Her first day is Sept. 8. 

During the interview process, Collogan was impressed with UNCP’s diverse campus and strong connection with the community. Throughout her career, she has thrived at smaller, private universities where libraries provide services that not only meet the academic needs of the university, but of the community as well. 

That close connection to community and UNCP’s historic mission of access as a minority-serving institution deeply, and personally, resonated with Collogan.

“I admire UNC Pembroke because of the diversity and the large population of first-generation students, like myself. Both my parents came to the United States from Chile in the late 1960s and I am a first-generation college student and very proud of my Chilean Mapuche ancestry. I can relate to many of the students here.”

Collogan said she’s excited for the opportunity to advance her career at a larger, state university where there is growth and change.

“Over the past three years, UNCP has seen a 32% increase in student enrollment and I am thrilled to join a department that’s going through transition and a university that is growing.

“I look forward to continuing the important work at the Mary Livermore Library. I plan to become involved in the campus and local community as I’m very interested in the history, culture and future growth of the university.”

After successfully earning an undergraduate degree in International Relations and a Master of Library and Information Sciences, both from the University of South Florida, Collogan had a wide range of work experiences at various kinds of libraries, as well as in the business world. She held roles in business research and analytics, working as a business researcher with Pricewaterhouse Cooper, the second-largest professional services network in the world. 

Though, as much as she enjoyed the corporate world, she always knew she was most passionate about librarianship. Because she believes in the importance of the central role of the library to meet the educational needs of students and faculty while serving as a resource for the larger university community.

“During her campus visit, Ms. Collogan’s enthusiasm and passion were obvious to everyone,” said UNCP Chancellor Robin Gary Cummings. 

“She’s a great fit for both our university and community. She completely understands the evolution of the library for today’s technology-based learning yet appreciates the iconic position of Mary Livermore Library. I’m excited to see the leadership she will bring to our beloved and historic library.”

Collogan discovered her calling as a professional librarian during a college internship at Vital Voices Global Partnership, conducting research at the Library of Congress, World Bank, State Department and attending political meetings. Her research focused on encouraging women’s involvement in education, health care, politics, business and leadership.  

“That experience is what launched me into starting my career in library sciences because I got to see how research and data were the basis of decisions made by leaders.”

In her most recent position at Jacksonville University, where she also served as an assistant professor, Collogan oversaw all aspects of library services, resources and programs in support of student learning, academic programs and faculty teaching. Collogan previously served in various leadership roles at ITT Technical Institute, St. Petersburg College, Eckerd College, Clearwater Public Library System and Pinellas Public Library Cooperative. 

A graduate of the Leadership Institute for Academic Librarians program at Harvard Graduate School of Education, Collogan is also actively involved in her professional community. For the past three years she has served in an appointed position by the Florida Secretary of State as a member of the State Library Council, working with the State Librarian and the Division of Library and Information Services. 

At UNCP, Collogan said she plans to leverage her collective skills, passion and experience to build on the foundation in place that will allow Livermore Library to meet the needs of students and community for generations to come. 

“I plan to continue the work and make progress in the best interest of the students and become involved in the community to gain perspective while also meeting the needs of the faculty, Friends of the Library and the community.”

Collogan and her husband, Vince, have two sons, Everett and Elliott.