Friday, April 8, 2016

Get to know...Gwen Hines & Jennifer Sharp!

Gwen and Jennifer and the dynamic duo at Overton High School. Jennifer is new to MNPS this year and we are so delighted and lucky she decided to join our team! Gwen is a veteran librarian and has decided to retire this school year. We are so sad to see her go but wish her nothing but the best!

Get to know me…Gwendolyn Hines
1. My family includes… my husband of 38 years and 3 adult daughters including identical twins. My husband is a writer and our twin daughters are both elementary school teachers in North Carolina. Our oldest daughter just got a job as a library clerk at Glencliff. I am the oldest of six children. I was born in London, England and my only brother, the youngest, was born in San Jose, Costa Rica. My sisters were all born in the U. S.

2. My favorite book or author is… Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, but generally mysteries is my favorite genre.

3. I decided to became a school librarian because… librarians have to know things about lots of different topics, so I didn’t have to narrow my education to one subject. I love to help with reference questions.

4. I would love to travel to… the Grand Canyon and the west coast of the U.S. I have been to several countries, but never to the Pacific coast states.

5. I think life is better with…chocolate.

Get to know me…Jennifer Sharp
1. My favorite local Nashville spot is… still trying to figure that out - I'm rediscovering Nashville after being a Knoxville resident for 8+ years! 

2. If you could eliminate one librarian stereotype it would be… the "shushing" thing! 

3. My favorite book or author is… It would be impossible for me to pick just one...but I did recently love I'll Give You the Sun, and I enjoy anything and everything that Rainbow Rowell writes. As far as classics, The Great Gatsby and Brave New World are my favorites. 

4. My warning label would be… Warning: Sarcasm May Appear! 

5. I decided to became a school librarian because…Well, I knew that I wanted to do something in the field of education. I originally planned to be a high school English teacher, but when I had almost finished my undergraduate degree, something felt "off." I started exploring some options, and talked to a family friend who was studying to become a school librarian. Everything clicked into place at that point. From the very beginning, I loved the flexibility that being a librarian affords me - I get to work with so many different students in so many different contexts and subject areas. I also love technology, so I like teaching students how to work well with all of the tools they have at their fingertips. I've also always loved to read, so it's fun to share that excitement with students and help them discover a love for reading, too. 

6. I would love to travel to… another continent! I've only traveled in North America so far, so I'm hoping to broaden my horizons soon! 

7. I think life is better with… family, friends, good food, and great books!  

Get to know my library…Gwen's point of view
1. Some of my students' favorite library resources are…graphic novels, ACT books, DVDs, and fiction.

2. I would love to have mobile device charging lockers in my library.

3. The thing I love most about my library is…the way that we reach out to students from many different cultures, especially since our wonderful library renovation!

4. My library is busiest when…students flood the library before school starts to check out books and DVDs and meet with friends.

5. My library is quietest when…the library is being used as a testing center, which happens way more days than it should.

6. I think every library needs…caring and resourceful librarians.

Get to know my library…Jennifer's point of view
1. Some of my students' favorite library resources are…

Limitless Libraries!! DVDs, graphic novels, and brand new fiction are also popular. We've been pushing our brand new makerspace, so we've had lots of kids interested in 3D printing recently, too!

2. My biggest success as a school librarian has been…I've had several students come back and tell me that something I've taught them has helped them out, or that they love using a tool or resource they discovered in the library. That's a pretty good feeling. I also love when I recommend a book to a student, and they come back and tell me how much they loved it! These moments aren't necessarily "big" successes, but they are the everyday little successes that really add up and make me feel like this is the right career for me.

3. You're happiest when your library…Is alive with students taking advantage of all the different spaces and resources that we have to offer!

4. One way I collaborate with teachers… is by creating virtual resources for their students! This is one of my favorite things to do for teachers - I'll create an online collection of materials, so that students access resources and librarian assistance 24/7, from anywhere with an Internet connection. I love the idea of making these tools available to students at THEIR convenience - it really opens up a lot of possibilities for both teachers and students.

5. I would love to have _____ in my library.

A student-run "genius bar" for technology, where students can help each other with technology/device issues! Also, a coffee shop would be AMAZING!

6. The thing I love most about my library is… how much students love being here! You can tell they really see the library as "their space." In a school this large, it's great to be able to interact with so many students on a daily basis. 


  1. Yay! I love both of these ladies and am so glad you decided to spotlight their hard work at Overton!

  2. Two awesome librarians, that always have our students best interest in mind. They go above and beyond insuring our students have the resources necessary to be successful in school.

  3. Thanks for highlighting the work of two talented and dedicated Overton Bobcats! The library is the heart of our school and our library staff makes it a welcoming, safe, and interesting place for students and staff. Proud of them both!