The Nevada Public Library continues to put its team in place. On Dec. 27, Brittany Dueker, who has worked as a part-time clerk for the library since September of 2019, started in a full-time Associate Librarian II position.
Dueker had been looking for the opportunity to become full-time in library work. “I like that my schedule is more straight-forward now,” she said, adding that in the part-time position, she worked many evenings, so this change will allow her to do more personal things in the evenings.
Dueker, 31, knew it would be a challenge to find full-time work with a library when you do not have a library program degree. Working toward that degree is something she hopes to do in the near future, because working in the library environment has been something she enjoys.
Her educational background suggests that she will have no trouble achieving the degree. She already has three – an Associate of Arts degree from Iowa Central Community College, and two bachelor’s degrees from Iowa State University, one in biology and another in anthropology.
“I worked for the Unity Point Pathology Lab for a while (after college),” Dueker said. The job required her to have good people skills as she worked with many patients. But she was looking to take those skills in a different direction.
The Ames Public Library happened to be hiring for a part-time position, and she got the job.
“I love libraries, I love books and reading, so I applied,” said the Crosby, Minnesota native. And she loved the work. “I started talking to one of the librarians about what a career path in libraries would look like, and decided to set off on this career path.”
In addition to the Ames Public Library, she also worked for a short time at the Pleasant Hill Library, learning all she could in each setting.
When Nevada was hiring for a clerk in 2019, she applied, hoping to learn even more and advance toward eventually finding full-time library work.
In her role as a part-time clerk for the Nevada Public Library, Dueker was responsible for the library’s social media and newsletter, mending of books and an assortment of other tasks. Now, as a full-time Associate Librarian II, her responsibilities will include cataloging, home delivery, large-print collection management and overseeing a book club, along with many other day-to-day tasks.
“It’s a small library, so we are all involved in everything,” she said. And, that type of flexibility in responsibilities is one of the things she loves about the Nevada library. She loves that it is also a place for her to try new ideas.
At home in Ames, Dueker is a newlywed. She and her husband, Matt Schramm, met in college at Fort Dodge, where they both participated in band and worked at Walmart. Matt also continued his education at Iowa State, where he studied engineering. He now works with several start-ups doing computer simulations.
“We’ve been together 11 years, but were married this past September,” Dueker said. They are the proud parents of two cats, Toph and Westley, both 5 years old.
Dueker likes living in Ames with all its amenities, but she enjoys working in Nevada with its “great small-town charm. It reminds me of the town I grew up in,” she noted. “Nevada is a great place to get to know people and to help them when they come to the library.”
—Written by Marlys Barker, City of Nevada