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Head of Collection Services

Pennsylvania State University
Pennsylvania, United States
Salary Not specified
Posted Date
Jan 21, 2022

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Position Type
Administrative, Academic Affairs, Librarians & Library Administration
Employment Level
Tenured/Tenured Track
Employment Type
Full Time
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Head of Collection Services

Head of Collection Services

The Pennsylvania State University Libraries seek creative, forward-thinking, collaborative applicants for a full-time, tenure-line faculty appointment as Head of Collection Services in the Eberly Family Special Collections Library.

The Pennsylvania State University is committed to and accountable for advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in all of its forms. We embrace individual uniqueness, foster a culture of inclusion that supports both broad and specific diversity initiatives, leverage the educational and institutional benefits of diversity, and engage all individuals to help them thrive. We value inclusion as a core strength and an essential element of our public service mission. More information on Penn State's commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusive Excellence can be found by visiting Information about the University Libraries' Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility efforts can be found by visiting

Position Summary

Reporting to the Head of the Eberly Family Special Collections Library (SCL), the Head of Collection Services plays a leading role in developing and sustaining a holistic, coordinated program for responsible stewardship, ethical description, and equitable access to Penn State's rare, unique, and distinctive collections. The position leads accessioning, arrangement and description, preservation, and collection management activities for special collections holdings in all formats, including born digital, audiovisual, manuscript, print, and photographs. The position examines current practices, processes, and systems with a focus on advancing sustainability, accessibility, representation, and inclusion in collections care and stewardship.

As a full-time, tenure-line faculty librarian, the Head of Collection Services is expected to participate in library, college, and university governance and devote time to research, scholarly activity, and service to the University, the public, and the profession. Incoming faculty benefit from the strong mentoring program developed by the University Libraries to support faculty in tenure-line appointments in fulfilling expectations in the areas of librarianship, research, and service.

  • Oversees accessioning, archival and manuscript processing, assessment, and collection management activities, ensuring adherence to best practices and standards and supporting broad discovery and access.
  • Supervises a team of approximately 6 employees (faculty, staff, and students), providing direction and oversight for work assignments, mentorship, and ongoing training and development for team members.
  • Serves on SCL management team and joins with the Head of SCL and other managers in leading efforts to advance departmental goals for building, stewarding, and promoting use and engagement with special collections, as well as team learning and development.
  • Works closely with curators to ensure strong coordination in building sustainable workflows for collection development and stewardship, and with reference and instruction colleagues to support broad and timely access to collections for research, teaching, and learning.
  • Works closely with managers and curators on planning and prioritization for collection development, assessment, arrangement and description, and digitization of special collections holdings in a way that promotes the broadest forms of access.
  • Leads efforts to examine current processes, tools, and systems, and develop and implement reparative and inclusive archival practices for description and access.
  • Leads efforts to assess and monitor existing control, access, and storage for special collections holdings, identify current and future needs, and work with colleagues to plan and undertake projects for reappraisal, deaccessioning, collection storage, and space planning.
  • Proactively collaborates with colleagues across the University Libraries, including the Special Collections Cataloging, Preservation, Conservation, and Digitization, and Annex Services teams to sustain and enhance ongoing maintenance, storage, preservation, discoverability, and accessibility of special collections holdings.
  • Advises and consults with colleagues across Commonwealth Campus Libraries to support preservation and access to special collections and archival materials across Penn State.
  • Serves regular hours on the reference desk and works alongside colleagues in assisting students, faculty, alumni, and other researchers with the discovery of resources appropriate for their research needs.
  • Engages in research, scholarly publication, and professional service activities at the local, regional, and national or international levels.

  • A graduate degree in library and information science from an ALA-accredited institution, or a graduate degree in archival studies, or equivalent combination of graduate degree and archival experience.
  • Experience in an archival or special collections environment working with collections in various formats, including textual, born-digital, audiovisual, manuscript, print, and photographs.
  • Experience or demonstrated knowledge in appraisal, accessioning, arrangement and description of special collections materials, and demonstrated commitment to responsible stewardship and equitable access.
  • Understanding of and commitment to current national archival and descriptive standards and best practices, including DACS, EAD, EAC-CPF, and MARC.
  • Excellent collaboration, communication, and interpersonal skills.
  • Strong organizational skills and experience in project management.
  • Ability to work effectively in a rapidly changing environment and to tolerate ambiguity.
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, respect, and inclusion.
  • Ability to meet the requirements of promotion and tenure in Penn State University Libraries.

Preferred Qualifications:
  • Supervisory and management experience.
  • Experience with collection management software (i.e., ArchivesSpace, Archon, or Archivist's Toolkit).
  • Experience providing reference service in a special collections library or academic setting.

Apply online at

CAMPUS SECURITY CRIME STATISTICS: For more about safety at Penn State, and to review the Annual Security Report which contains information about crime statistics and other safety and security matters, please go to, which will also provide you with detail on how to request a hard copy of the Annual Security Report.

Penn State is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, and is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. jeid-142ed269bb8b0d48858e88354a3a8ad3
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