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Staff Spotlight: Ionelia Engel

September 28, 2021

This month’s staff spotlight is Ionelia Engel, Library Assistant in Access Services and a Penn Alum!

The Essential Questions

What is your role and how long have you been working at Biddle?

I have been working at Biddle for two years as a Library Service Assistant. I started by assisting patrons at the Circulation Desk, but for the past year I have been also processing interlibrary loan requests.

Where did you work before your time at Biddle?

Prior to coming to Biddle, I had worked at Van Pelt Library. Most of my time there I worked for the Faculty Express and Interlibrary Loan departments.

What book/s are you reading right now?

I recently finished reading On Juneteenth by Annette Gordon-Reed and Masquerade by Tivadar Soros. I am now reading The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline.

Lightning Round

Cats or dogs? Dogs

Fiction or non-fiction? Non-fiction

Comedy or horror? Comedy

Sweet or savory? Savory

Coffee or tea? Coffee

Wildcard Qs

Where is your favorite lunch spot on campus?

I cannot say that I have a favorite ‘lunch’ spot on campus, but my favorite café on campus is Williams Café, which is entirely run by students, They have good coffee and the most amazing almond croissants.

What is the last television series you binged?

The last television series I binged was one of the PBS masterpieces, Poldark, on WHYY passport.

If you would meet anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why?

I would like to meet Nostradamus to discuss the accuracy of all the existing interpretations / translations of his Prophecies.

What is your educational background?

I have a BA in Economics from University of Pennsylvania and I am currently pursuing a Master’s in Education also at Penn. In addition, I have two Master’s degrees from Drexel University, a MLIS (Library Science) and a MSIS (Information Systems).

What is your most memorable library experience?

My most memorable library experience comes from my time working for interlibrary loan at Van Pelt. One summer, a patron submitted about one hundred requests for the hard copy of the Hobbit in all the languages that has been published. Libraries in small countries however wouldn’t want to lend their only copy, so the patron asked me if it would be possible to request the first two chapters of the book. Fortunately, most of those libraries agreed to send us a PDF of the first two chapters and I ended up canceling only a couple requests out of a hundred