Schaller started in the college on June 1 and works in the Digital Initiatives and Scholarly Communications department within the University Libraries.
"I love Open Educational Resources, and I am grateful and also awed by the opportunity to help New Mexico students afford college,” said Schaller. “I’m excited to work in the library at UNM, as I am an alum of the university, so it feels like I am coming home after a long time away.”
The Open Educational Resources (OER) Librarian position was created as part of the CULLS OER Initiative. The OER initiative seeks to provide UNM faculty members with the support they need to adopt low and no-cost textbooks and class material solutions for their courses when it aligns with their instructional objectives and academic freedom. When possible, the UL would like to partner with other higher education institutions and the State of New Mexico to identify resources and support for faculty initiatives in this area.
The University Libraries has recently created a website dedicated to the OER Initiative on campus. On the new website, visitors can find definitions and a resources list for OER.
Schaller has also created a new OER LibGuide that goes in depth on what are OERs and how they can be beneficial to organizations, instructors, and students. Visitors can also find information on evaluating OERs.
“I am excited that I have the opportunity to learn about the latest developments in Open Educational Resources. This field is constantly changing and growing, so I love having time to keep abreast of developments,” said Schaller.
Prior to working at UNM, Schaller worked as an English professor at Central New Mexico Community College (CNM) where she also served as a Presidential Fellow for OER in 2017-2018. Schaller received both her Master in Fine Arts in Creative Writing and Bachelor of Arts in English and Journalism & Mass Communications from the University of New Mexico.
What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part of my job so far is that writing and scholarship are part of my job duties. I love geeking out on research. Previously, I had to steal away time to write while working at my former job, but at UNM, I can openly place writing time on my calendar.
Where are you from/where did you grow up?
I was born in New Jersey, but I moved to New Mexico with my mom and brother when I was eight. I grew up for the most part in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, before there was a Santa Ana Star Center or a Starbucks. The city was a town back then, and there were very few parks, so I played in ditch tunnels and made friends with tumbleweeds.
What do you like to do for fun?
For fun, I like to hang out with my family and friends. I have two daughters, aged 10 and 14. My ten-year-old still likes to play with me, so we often jump on the trampoline and play fashion show. I also like going to local concerts, reading books, and taking naps!
What are you reading (or watching or playing or listening to right now?)
Right now, I am reading Long Division by Kiese Laymon, and I am also reading Linda Hogan’s poetry collection A History of Kindness.
What’s your favorite food?
My favorite food is all the food, but mostly food that is covered with cheese.
What’s your superpower?
My superpower is my ability to cultivate hope in times of darkness.
What is the first album you ever bought for yourself?
The first album I ever bought for myself was Mariah Carey’s self-titled album Mariah Carey. I would like to add my musical taste quickly shifted in my early teens and the second album I ever bought was Nevermind by Nirvana.
If you could time travel, where would you go and why?
If I could time travel, I would travel into the future and take lots pictures and bring them back to the present, so I could show everyone what climate change looks like fifty years from now.
If you didn’t work in libraries, what do you think you’d be doing?
If I didn’t work in libraries, I would be an English teacher who very passionately teaches her students about the wide-openness of grammar and the importance of learning one’s own personal writing style, voice, and process.