For Joanna Williams, Alcorn State University has been more than a job; it’s been her home. Soon, her journey with the University’s J.D. Boyd Library will end after more than two decades of service.
Although a significant milestone, saying goodbye to the place she loves stirs up plenty of emotions for Williams.
“I am sad and happy because Alcorn is my home,” said Williams. “I was born here, attended this school, worked, and now retiring from the University. That’s a lot bundled together.”
In June, Williams will retire from the library after 25 years. She will retire as the library’s reference/archivist librarian/public service director. Williams earned a master’s degree in information and library science from The University of Southern Mississippi. She also earned master’s degrees in elementary education and workforce education leadership and a bachelor’s degree in business education from Alcorn.
Working for her alma mater has been an uplifting and enlightening experience for Williams.
“My experience has been great. I’ve had so many good days during my career here. I’ve learned a lot about people and myself as a supervisor. I have enjoyed attending professional workshops that enabled me to learn essential information in research for students, faculty, staff, and the community.”
Making Alcorn’s yearbooks available on the library’s digital platform was Williams’s favorite part about her job. She will miss helping Alcornites from around the world revisit memories from their college days.
“I will miss digitizing the yearbook in the library’s archives. My job has been comforting and rewarding because these yearbooks can be viewed by anyone in the world. I’ve done this job with a smile for many years.”
The job also allowed Williams to learn some new skills along the way. She credits her work at the library for her professional development.
“I’ve learned so many skills that include customer service and how to be a leader. Customer service has always been easy for me because I love helping others. I enjoyed learning what it takes to be a leader and what’s expected of me as a leader.”
Now that Williams is at the end of her path at Alcorn, she looks forward to experiencing a new chapter in her life.
“I will miss everyone, but it is time for another chapter in my life. I want to do some things that I’ve always dreamed of doing. I plan to travel, join a fitness club, do some gardening and landscaping, and spend time with my grandchildren. I thank God for making this possible.”