Master's student Paige Dhyne likes to connect people with information. It was one of the reasons that Dhyne, who hails from Grand Rapids, Michigan, decided to study LIS after earning a dual bachelor's degree in film/video production and writing from Grand Valley State University. While initially attracted to the iSchool because of its number-one ranking, she became convinced that Illinois was the perfect fit for her after getting to know the iSchool staff, faculty, and students at a visit day last spring.
Dhyne is happy with her decision to enroll in the MS/LIS program. "I've never felt lost or out of place, and the breadth and depth of opportunity here is unparalleled. If I had to make the choice again, I would choose the iSchool every time."
She is the recipient of an iSchool scholarship that focuses on recruiting exceptional students, which is made possible through contributions from alumni and friends to the Annual Fund. For Dhyne, the scholarship felt like an affirmation of her decision to study LIS, alleviating some of the "what ifs" and allowing her to make the move to Illinois.
"I am honored to have received a scholarship. Since starting at the iSchool, I now realize that I was only limited financially—the sky is truly the limit here—and the scholarship reduced my limitations. I hope I can reciprocate that one day for someone else," she said.
Dhyne's research interests include academic libraries, information literacy, and knowledge and information management. She is currently conducting a textual analysis research project with affiliated faculty member Lisa Hinchliffe, professor/coordinator for information literacy services and instruction at the University Library.
"The project looks at how librarians, libraries, and research processes are mentioned in introductory-level, undergraduate science textbooks," she explained.
At the iSchool, Dhyne is chair of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) committee within the ALA student chapter.
"I am really interested in how the ACRL Information Literacy Framework applies to nonhumanities disciplines. After receiving my MS/LIS, I'd love to work in an academic library and balance project management with instruction in some way. I have a passion for the sciences, biology in particular, and I'd like to work with students and faculty in that field of study, maybe as a liaison librarian or subject specialist librarian. Ultimately, I'd like to become the director of an academic library and use my project and knowledge management to better the instructional services the university library has to offer its students."
Working as a graduate assistant in the Undergraduate Library has given her hands-on experience in an academic library.
"My assistantship affords me opportunities that do not necessarily fit in a classroom setting," she said. "My primary responsibility is to independently teach information literacy sessions at the library to undergraduate students, ESL students, and communication students. I do, however, have some project work that allows me to expand my skillset in collection development, programming, outreach, promotional media, and assessment. I also get to supervise undergraduate students too, which is a great learning opportunity for me."
In her free time, Dhyne enjoys gaming, weightlifting, and reading, particularly YA/New Adult fantasy books. "I run a readers' advisory blog/twitter/bookstagram surrounding that genre," she said. "And if I'm not reading it—I'm writing it!"