The David Yellin Academic College of Education

Interview Questions

Name Dania Ansenberg, Head Librarian of The David Yellin College of Education, Jerusalem

What are your main responsibilities here?

To make sure that everything flows smoothly and that we do everything for the best possible service:  managing computers, ordering books, consulting with students and teachers; for teachers to give us information about their projects and we prepare lists of all the books related to it; supervising staff; preparing exhibitions every three months; writing a bulletin twice a year…

How long have you been working here?

This is my third year.

Tell us a bit about your personal background and how you came to work here.

I was a librarian in a school for 15 years, then I obtained my Ph.D in library science and then I came here.  I am also head of the program to educate librarians.

What are the most important aspects of this place – its functions, what it offers, etc.

Helping students to study:  supplying their needs or access to what they need; enlarging their world. 

How has this organization evolved since you’ve been here?

In many ways.  Once a year we have a ‘happening,’ which is a theme, a selected subject, that most of the students deal with.  For example, ‘family and art’ and every year we make an exhibition about the theme.  Last year the theme was ‘mirror.’   We decide the theme in the summer with all the heads of the departments, and we launch it with workshops and a lecture on the subject.

What is the most visible mark of the Bnai Zion role here?

Now we have books in the library from Bnai Zion!  Thank you!

What are your biggest or proudest accomplishments here?

The ‘happenings,’ the exhibitions, a project to begin to scan articles for students to access on their computers at home; there is a problem with copyrights but we are finding a way…

What do you envision for the future here?

We have a very limited budget but we want more computers… we want the EBSCO database system (that offers a broad range of full text and bibliographic databases designed for research) that costs $10,000 annually, which is very expensive but it’s the best one for teacher instruction.  There are many things I’d like to do, all of which are related to the concept of enlarging exposure to the written word.

What is the most fulfilling aspect of your job here?

Promotion of reading.

If you could change or improve something here, what would it be?

To have more money to spend on important things.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working here? 

I enjoy spending time with my family; I have three children, two daughters ages 26 and 28 and a son who is 20.  I like to go to many cultural activities like the theater and concerts.  I enjoy reading and like Camus, Kafka, Nicole Krause who wrote The History of Love; I also like gardening, and when my kids were younger we planted vegetables but at this point I grow flowers; and I really like getting together with friends.

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