As she prepares to develop teen
programming at Canton Public Library, Allyssa Bruce feels she has a distinct
advantage — some very involved library users.
"The teens who come here are very diligent and consistent users of the library," Bruce said.
Bruce is now in her third week as Canton's first Teen Services Librarian.
Bruce has set up a "Start Your Career in Art" program for the night of Nov. 4 and has some other ideas such as an anime club and events involving henna art.
Bruce, however, said she really wants to let the teens drive much of the programming.
"I didn't want to lock into anything," she said. "I want to see what they are actually interested in."
To that end she is working to establish a teen advisory group. And while she wants to involve some of those teens that have helped with book buddies and other programs, she is also working to put out an application to try and reach out to others.
"Everybody's welcome," she said.
Bruce grew up in Wolcott and worked for three and a half years for the Wolcott Public Library. She also currently works in circulation for the library at Naugatuck Valley Community College.
Bruce has an undergraduate English degree from the University of Connecticut and is working toward her master's from the Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science.
Teen Services has been a focus for the library
over the past several years. In 2010, the library set aside $3,500 for
teen materials, which was matched by the Friend of the Library. That same year,
the library used a $15,000 state grant to create a “Teen Zone.”
The library and Friends of Canton Public Library also advocated for a Teen Services Librarian for several budget seasons and in 2013-2014, officials approved a position for 16 hours a week.
Teens can find Bruce at the library from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Contact her at email@example.com