Academic Lead Librarian
Mary Davidson MSc MCLIP
I started working at Writtle University College in 2012. Although I grew up in Colchester, my mother's family farmed on land not far from Writtle for centuries, so in many ways it felt like a homecoming.
With a first degree in music, my academic background is unrelated to the subjects taught at Writtle, and my professional experience had been in healthcare, but I have enjoyed building up knowledge and interest in new areas.
My primary role at Writtle is to ensure that students and staff have access to the resources they need to be able to flourish. As Writtle is a smaller institution, I get to wear many library 'hats', and no two days are alike. The most rewarding aspects of a very diverse role are working directly with students to provide them with new skills and collaborating with academic and fellow professional colleagues to ensure that we are providing our students with the best experience and opportunities to succeed.
I have a strong interest in most sports (mainly from the comfort of my armchair!); I have followed the Wasps rugby union team for many years. Music still plays a significant part in my life and is essential for maintaining my wellbeing - as is getting out on our beautiful campus and extended estate.
Eleanor Marsh MSc
I started working at Writtle College University in January 2022 and have previously worked in academic and public libraries. My career path to working in libraries has not been straightforward, having previously been a self-employed music teacher, amongst other jobs. But because of this I have a wealth of different experiences of work and study which help me relate to library users, whether staff or students.
When I studied for my undergraduate degree, there was not nearly as much support available as there is now. For this reason, I want to work hard to promote things like 1-to-1 support from the library, or help with IT and academic writing skills. We have such a lot to offer both staff and students, so finding ways to improve library services is something I am enthusiastic about.
Outside of work I enjoy working on my garden, visiting local gardens and nature reserves. I am a member of the RHS. I also love playing and writing music. I am a regular at Parkrun, and also enjoy cycling and walking in the Peak District.
I came into libraries from an insurance background after a career with a leading global insurer, where I specialised in dealing with corporate clients, handling legal claims through to litigation. At university I acquired an Honours degree in Law.
Prior to working at Writtle University College, I worked for Essex Libraries and in the library at The Anglo European School.
My hobbies and interests are football and sport in general. I have an interest in history and travel also. Watching films is a regular pastime of mine too.
I enjoy talking to students in the library and helping them find the information that they are seeking.
Before joining the library team here in 2019, I worked for over 30 years in public libraries in London and so this has been a step change for me! It has been a steep learning curve and every day presents some new learning opportunity.
I currently look after the journal collection and deal with overdue items. The best part of my job is being able to help staff and students with their queries. I strongly believe in knowledge and opportunities being accessible to all and arrived at Writtle with a committed customer service ethic. It is very satisfying when you can send someone on their way with the answer/ information/ book they have asked for.
Outside of work I am an avid reader of crime and historical novels, but non-fiction in these subjects grabs my attention too. I also enjoy gardening, so working in the library here with its extensive collection of books on that subject is marvellous.
I feel incredibly lucky to be working at Writtle with its friendly and supportive colleagues and its beautiful gardens and grounds. As the saying goes, "What's not to like?"