BURTON — The Genesee District Library (GDL) has named Kevin Collins as the new Librarian at the Burton Memorial branch. Collins previously worked as librarian at the Flint Township-McCarty and Genesee Valley Center branches.
Collins has extensive knowledge of technology, which he plans to use to offer one-on-one technology tutoring. Collins is happy to assist patrons with smartphone or tablet questions, or just about any other technology issue. Collins also hopes to increase outreach to the local community. “I grew up in Burton and am an alumnus of Bentley Community Schools, so I’m familiar with the area,” he said. “I hope to connect with the community and be able to meet their needs.”
According to Collins, one of the biggest challenges facing libraries is meeting the growing variety of needs from our communities. “As we saw from lower student test scores during Covid, we’re not quite in an all-digital future, so we must ensure that we continue focusing on both our physical materials and digital materials,” he said, “making them available in a way that ensures that no one is left behind.”
Collins said the role of the public library is to be a place where the community can receive help without cost or judgement.
“Free internet access, local newspapers, books on all sorts of topics and assistance with technology,” he said. “There’s an overwhelming amount of information out there, and I feel the library can offer patrons a starting point, so they don’t feel lost looking for information they need.”
According to Collins, the most important thing that libraries offer patrons is curated information. “We try to organize our books and databases in a way that makes it easy for patrons to access our materials, either digitally or in-person,” he said. “We keep our databases up-to-date and try to purchase books that best meet the needs of the community. An example of this is our community resources lists, connecting people with housing and food assistance, helplines and more.”
Collins holds a bachelor’s degree in Research Psychology from Tiffin University, and a master’s degree in Library and Information Science from Wayne State University.