The 2016 VALA Student Award for a student at RMIT goes to Kate Monypenny.
Kate will graduate from the Master of Information Management in December 2016, achieving high distinctions in all subjects. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Melbourne, majoring in English Literary Studies and Theatre Studies. As her previous experience in libraries was largely humanities-based, Kate found the technology-related courses at RMIT a fascinating insight into the realities and possibilities of IT in libraries. She particularly enjoyed learning about coding and cataloguing, finding the acquisition of the new languages challenging and stimulating. Kate was also the 2016 recipient of the Enterprise Knowledge award for excellence in the course 'The Professional Experience' after undertaking an industry placement at the British Library.
Kate completed her Information Management studies alongside working for multiple public libraries, currently holding the position of Information Services Librarian at Stonnington Library and Information Service. Passionate about the promotion of early literacy, Kate began her library career as a Children's Library Officer - devising and delivering Storytimes, Babytimes and parent education sessions - and continues to maintain an interest in all kinds of youth programming. In her current role, aside from providing frontline customer assistance and contributing to collection maintenance, Kate develops and delivers technology education for adults and STEM programming for children and youth. As part of her studies she investigated the potential use and impact of digital storytelling technologies for teenager and community engagement, and is now keen to incorporate more technology-based programs into her work. Approaching the end of her degree, Kate looks forward to applying the resulting skills and knowledge to contribute to digital literacy development in the wider community.
Congratulations, Kate, and good luck!