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Archives & Special Collections

Getting to Know Salena Valdez, Library Specialist

by Dylan McDonald on 2022-01-25T00:00:00-07:00 | Comments

Getting to Know ASC staff is a series spotlighting staff from the NMSU Archives and Special Collections department.   

Shifting books at Branson Library, December 2021

Background information:

Hello, my name is Salena Valdez. I am originally from the Los Angeles County area. I moved to Las Cruces, New Mexico when I was a sophomore in high school. I have two dogs named Holly and Huey. Holly is a beagle and Huey is a mixed breed. Although I am not originally from New Mexico, I have lived here for more than half of my life, and I have grown to appreciate its beauty and history. 

Educational background:

I received my undergraduate degree in business from New Mexico State University. My business degree provided a good foundation, but I wanted to pursue something that matched my interests. Without having any library experience, I chose to pursue a graduate degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. I completed my graduate degree in December 2019. Currently, I am pursuing a graduate certificate in Museum Studies at NMSU. 

Staff photo with F-117 aircraft, Holloman AFB, NM, c. 2007

Las Cruces Sun-News (October 8, 2009, page 6A) article announcing my first deployment in 2009.

Role at NMSU Archives:

I decided to pursue employment related to my Master’s degree, which brought me back to New Mexico State University as a Library Specialist with the Archives and Special Collections department. I am the student supervisor for the department, and I work on various projects that include book shifting, oral history transcribing, and reference help. 

Previous archival experience:

Although I have had no previous archival experience, besides graduate coursework, I have gained invaluable knowledge in the first four months that I have worked with the department. I am incredibly grateful to my supervisor and colleagues for hiring me and taking the time to teach me their specialized skills. Also, I am grateful to the entire NMSU Library for welcoming me and assisting in my transition. I consider it a privilege to be working with such outstanding professionals, and I am excited to assist the community with their research needs.  

Random fact people do not know about me:

I served in the United States Air Force for six years. When I enlisted, I hoped to get stationed anywhere but New Mexico. The Air Force stationed me at Holloman Air Force Base in Alamogordo, NM. I guess I was meant to stay in New Mexico for a reason, and I am so glad I did. 

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