Cathy Tuohy has always had a passion for literature, language, and systems. Today she is the Assistant Director for Technology and Technical Services at the Cardinal Cushing Library at Emmanuel College. Like many professionals in the library and information science field, Cathy studied English before turning her focus onto libraries. While studying at Loyola University in New Orleans, Cathy did classwork at night and copy cataloging at the university library during the day. Her time as a paraprofessional cataloger first inspired her to pursue librarianship as a career.
Cathy’s current position at Emmanuel has a more traditional focus on supporting the library in an academic community, but she has a long history of less traditional librarian roles at a variety of big companies. This included working with vendors and managing market data for Fidelity, and performing support for software, clients, and servers at Mellon Trust. Cathy enjoyed coordinating with vendors to provide the best access and content for e-resources. It was work that went beyond the usual IT support for hardware and software and ultimately helped inform Cathy’s choice to return to work in specifically a library setting.
Now at Emmanuel for thirteen years, Cathy continues to manage the college’s e-resources and to support their related software. She credits her work satisfaction to having experienced a variety of library jobs and settings. That is her advice to others just beginning their careers in the library and information science profession. Trying out different libraries and environments can help you determine “where your skills lie and maybe [help you learn] more about your passions,” be it public, school, academic, or specialized libraries.