April 01, 2015
You might say Katherine Ann Furlong’s introduction to Susquehanna was a bit on the frigid side. She was interviewed for the position of university librarian and director of the library during a blizzard in February 2014. “There was so much snow that I couldn’t leave town at the end of the interview, and I had to stay another night,” Furlong recalls.
Despite the frosty welcome, Furlong gladly accepted the position, effective July 1, 2014, one of the hottest days of the year and smack dab in the middle of a major renovation project, widely supported by alumni, parents and friends. It transformed the 86-year-old Blough-Weis Library into a 21st-century teaching and learning center, complete with a class-sized theater, a late-night coffee shop, individual workstations, state-of-the-art small group study pods, a conference area, and an additional library classroom that can be reconfigured into presentation space.
“It was a remarkable summer full of transitions, both personal and professional,” Furlong says.
Prior to joining Susquehanna, Furlong worked as director for access and technical services at Lafayette College, where she also served as project manager for Lafayette’s $22 million expansion and renovation of Skillman Library. She’s also held positions as instruction coordinator and reference librarian at Gettysburg College and user education/electronic resources librarian at the University of Maine at Farmington.
Since taking the helm of the Blough-Weis Library, Furlong says she’s strived to bring enthusiasm, experience and a willingness to embrace change to the position. Indeed, change has come fast and furious since her arrival, and she says, “It’s going to be even more exciting as we move forward in this new library space.”