SMC Librarian

Marina Parise “I’ve been an adjunct librarian at SMC for 16 years, and the changes I’ve seen are just amazing. It’s like every day I’m reporting to a new job!”

We’ve all got a picture of the typical librarian: shy, retiring, mousy. Right? Well, then, meet Marina Parise; born Italian, raised American, and… Rock ’n’ Roll freak? “Yeah, I’m a die-hard rock musicologist,” says Marina with a decidedly un-mousy laugh. “I go back to the Yardbirds, the Stones… But then I moved on to U2, Nirvana, and Pearl Jam. But I do prefer Mozart over anybody.” It was actually while working in a record shop that Marina got the first inklings of what she would eventually do with her life.

“I was in the store during the disco days, and people were always coming in and saying, ‘Do you know a song that goes ‘Da-da-de-da’? And I could always find it for them. I just love finding information and helping people out. And being a librarian is a whole lot more satisfying than selling recordings!” she says with a wry chuckle. “I mean, we have 7,000 people a day coming through our doors—all of them searching for something if only a great and quiet place to study. And working at the Reference desk is just ideal for me because I’m in one-on-one contact with the students there. I get to make a big difference in people’s lives because—just by being pleasant and guiding them to a source—I can make them feel very positive about SMC and what they’re doing here.”

Marina further states, “You gotta love what you do in life. And I do! On a Saturday night, I’m already looking forward to Monday morning. I get to relive that thrill that we all had as kids on the first day of school. Sometimes my work is just in answering the simplest question. But it makes my day when someone says to me, ‘Thanks for helping me out.’ ” Da-da-de-da…

Read more stories from present and past years in the SMC Student Spotlight Archive.