Systems & Discovery Librarian

Job Details

Position Type: Staff Full-time

Hours per week: 37.5   

Weeks per year: 52

Work Schedule: M-F, 8:30-5; occasional nights and/or weekends as needed 

Department Summary & Job Purpose:

Mount Holyoke College’s Library, Information, and Technology Services (LITS) Division empowers a diverse and inclusive learning community equipping every person to purposefully engage the world. We connect people with the information, expertise, spaces, and technologies that enhance their work and fuel scholarly endeavor. Mount Holyoke College is part of the Five Colleges, Inc. Consortium along with Amherst College, Hampshire College, Smith College, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Reporting to the Head of Discovery Services, the Systems and Discovery Librarian will join a collaborative team that connects the Mount Holyoke Community to the many information resources available to them virtually and in person. As a member of the Discovery Services department within Discovery & Access (DnA), this person works to maximize best possible cross-system functionality, partnering with colleagues to optimize all aspects regarding the discovery of and access to electronic and physical resources. In close collaboration with others in LITS and across the Five Colleges, the Systems and Discovery Librarian guides and directs the management and integration of the Library’s suite of discovery and digital access platforms with remote access & authentication systems. This person strives for optimal systems’ integration in support of exposing the broadest range of information resources to our users with the overarching goal of providing seamless, user-friendly library services within the Five Colleges environment.

The Systems and Discovery Librarian will join LITS at a time during which the Five Colleges Libraries, as beta-partners of EBSCO, is in the process of migrating from Ex Libris’ ALEPH ILS to the open source library services platform FOLIO hosted by EBSCO. The consortial undertaking offers us a unique opportunity for collaboration with our Five Colleges colleagues as we work to implement, refine, and imagine the possibilities of our new single tenant FOLIO instance together.


Core Job Duties and Responsibilities: 

  •  Provides technical leadership for and works in collaboration with others to manage a suite of information systems employed by the library. 
  • Serves as lead contact with systems vendors and LITS colleagues to facilitate systems integrations, troubleshooting library systems problems, managing data exchange, systems security, and applicable system upgrades.
  • Consults with public services colleagues in LITS to gather input and implement improvements to public facing library interfaces.
  • Works closely with the Head of Discovery Services in bridging the gaps between systems, discovery, and access. 
  • Devises and brings forward need-based solutions and workarounds to address system limitations by keeping abreast of new trends, tools, and applications and by engaging in professional development opportunities.
  • Actively contributes to Five Colleges working groups, FOLIO SIGs, and local meetings.
  • Furthers the College's diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) goals by engaging with colleagues to create a welcoming, inclusive, accessible, and user-centered environment in which a diverse population of students, faculty, and staff can thrive. 
  • Contributes to a continuous process of assessment to ensure DnA’s success in advancing the College’s evolving goals in light of pedagogical, information, and technology changes. 
  • Performs related duties as assigned, including serving as backup to DnA colleagues as needed.

Qualifications: 1. MLS/MLIS from an ALA-accredited program, or education and experience sufficiently relevant to substitute for the ALA-accredited degree
2. 3-5 years of library experience, preferably in an academic environment
3. Familiarity with general practices and standards for library cataloging, metadata, and technical services workflows.
4. Experience with integrated library systems, e-resource management systems/principles and other library technologies, such as but not limited to EZProxy, OpenAthens, Shibboleth, ILLiad, or ARES, etc.
5. Familiarity with at least one programming or markup language (such as, but not limited to XML, Perl, JSON and/or PHP), the workings of APIs, and SQL.
6. Demonstrated ability to set priorities, juggle multiple tasks without losing track of any, and guide projects to fruition.
7. Demonstrated ability to learn, implement, and instruct others about or in the use of new technologies.
8. Demonstrated ability to introduce, nurture, and establish change.
9. Excellent listening, oral, and written communication skills, including the ability to understand the needs of staff and explain complex concepts to staff with differing levels of expertise.
10. Ability to travel as needed to participate in consortia and professional meetings and events.

Preferred Qualifications: 1. Experience with transferring bibliographic records between systems.
2. Familiarity with image-based or text-based digital repositories (such as ContentDM, MDID, Omeka, Digital Commons, DSpace, Fedora, etc.).
3. Experience reviewing and/or negotiating e-resource licenses and related documents.
4. Experience troubleshooting library specific hardware, e.g. label printers, production scanners etc.
5. Comfort using collaborative tools such as Github, Slack, and Confluence.
6. Demonstrated ability to support and foster development of colleagues.

We are actively building an organization that values the following skills and abilities. We want to talk with candidates who see themselves broadly reflected below:

1. Works effectively in both independent and team environments.
2. Embraces the opportunity to build a collaborative, accessible, and culturally diverse environment.
3. Possesses a love of learning, the ability to think critically with a dash of ingenuity, and enjoys learning new technology skills.
4. Retains the open-mindedness to change their mind, and the confidence to admit to not knowing something as well as to learn and move on from mistakes.
5. Shows sensitivity to the diverse needs of others at all skill levels.
6. Appreciates that there are implications in library discovery that relate to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
7. Exhibits excellent and creative interpersonal, communication, organizational, and problem-solving skills, and an enthusiastic service orientation.


Compliance Requirements: 

Physical Demands: The employee is required to have close visual acuity to perform an activity such as: preparing and
analyzing data and figures; transcribing; viewing a computer terminal; and extensive reading.

Sufficient clarity of speech required includes those which permit the employee to discern verbal
instructions and communicate effectively in person and by telephone.

Lifting: Raising objects (up to 10 lbs frequently and up to 25 lbs occasionally) from a lower to a higher position or moving objects horizontally from
position-to-position. This factor is important if it occurs to a considerable degree and requires
substantial use of upper extremities and back muscles.

Working Conditions: The employee is not substantially exposed to adverse environmental conditions (such as in typical office or administrative work).  

Background Checks:

Mount Holyoke College is committed to providing a safe and secure environment, supported by qualified
employees that will allow all of its students, faculty, staff and those associated with them to successfully
carry out the mission of the college. As a condition of employment, the College will conduct appropriate
background checks for all new hires. Mount Holyoke has designated the Office of Human Resources as
the office responsible for ensuring that background checks (CORI, SORI, Credit History, & Driver

Credential) are completed and utilized in the hiring process and Five College Office of Compliance and
Risk Management as the office responsible for facilitating background checks as articulated in this policy.

Special Instructions for Applicants: 

Apply online by application deadline. Application materials must include 1) a cover letter summarizing
interests and qualifications, 2) a complete resume or curriculum vitae, and 3) contact information for 3
professional references. 

Mount Holyoke College is a women’s college that is gender diverse. The College is committed to providing equal access and opportunity in employment and education to all employees and students. In compliance with state and federal law, Mount Holyoke College does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, genetic information, sex, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy, gender identity or expression, ancestry, veteran or military status, or any other legally protected status under federal, state or local law. The College does not discriminate on the basis of gender in the recruitment and admission of students to its graduate program.

Mount Holyoke College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. #LI-RS1


Mount Holyoke College is a highly selective liberal arts institution with a long tradition of educating women for active engagement in the world. A diverse community of approximately 2000 students (13% international, 17% U.S. women of color), the College is committed to the creation of a powerful learning environment which seamlessly links the curricular and co-curricular dimensions of campus life in a way that affirms identity, builds community and prepares women for leadership in a pluralistic world.mount_holyoke_college1.jpg

Mount Holyoke is located in the beautiful Pioneer Valley in Western Massachusetts. The College, which has just completed the third year of an ambitious six-year strategic plan, is committed to educating a diverse community of women at the highest level of academic excellence and to fostering the alliance of liberal arts education with purposeful engagement in the world. Mount Holyoke is in a particularly strong position having received the highest numbers of applications in its history. Mount Holyoke is a member of the Five College Consortium (along with Amherst, Hampshire, and Smith Colleges and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst).

mount_holyoke_college2.jpgAs the first of the Seven Sisters—the female equivalent of the once predominantly male Ivy League—Mount Holyoke established higher education for women as a serious endeavor. Our long, distinguished history of educating leaders arises from a powerful combination of:

  • academic excellence in a global learning environment
  • a tight-knit, diverse, and international community
  • a worldwide network of alumnae
  • the conviction that women can and should make a difference in the world.

Mount Holyoke College is one of the nation's best institutions for undergraduate education, according to The Princeton Review Guide's 2010 edition of its annual guidebook, The Best 371 Colleges. Mount Holyoke rates highly in a number of categories, among them "best classroom experience" (#6), "best college library" (#12), and "dorms like palaces" (#13).

Our 2,200 students hail from 48 states and nearly 70 countries. One in three students is an international citizen or African American, Asian American, Latina, Native American, or multiracial. Sixty-two percent of incoming first-year students were in the top 10 percent of their high school classes.



  • 49 departmental and interdepartmental majors
  • Option to design your own major
  • 33 percent of all majors are interdisciplinary
  • Majors of current MHC students: humanities, 32 percent; social sciences, 42 percent; natural and applied sciences, 26 percent

Class Size

  • 15 percent of classes have 10 or fewer students
  • 64 percent have 20 or fewer
  • 82 percent have 25 or fewer

Student-to-Faculty Ratio
9 to 1

After College
Six months after graduation, 86 percent of the class of 2008 were working or in school. Of those students, 16 percent were attending graduate/professional schools of their choice. Typically, 75 percent of MHC graduates enroll in graduate/professional school within ten years.

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