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Karen Knight Retires after 28 Years at HSL

by Kimberley Barker on 2023-11-27T10:01:01-05:00 | 0 Comments

Karen Knight gives an orientation to HSL to new students in August 2023.

Karen Knight, our Medical Education Librarian, is retiring on December 24, 2023. Karen came to Claude Moore Health Sciences Library (CMHSL) in 1995. In her initial role as reference librarian, Karen excelled in helping patrons tackle complex and challenging medical questions. Her knowledge of medicine, her creativity, and her extraordinary teaching abilities positively impacted countless learners, including students, faculty, staff, and her colleagues, and led to her current role as Medical Education Librarian.

In this role, Karen played a crucial part in integrating information management and critical thinking skills into the SOM curriculum. A gifted teacher in the classroom, she is also skilled at working one-on-one with students to ensure they can apply knowledge to real-life clinical situations. Karen remained dedicated to students throughout their four years of study, sharing insights through her widely followed platforms ("From Karen’s Desk") and fostering lasting relationships beyond graduation. She also created impactful experiences for students including her annual 5Cs Caring Break, a popular event featuring canines, cocoa, cider, cookies, and philanthropic contributions to local animal shelters.

Karen’s contributions go beyond UVA as well—she played an active role in the medical library community, notably serving the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Medical Library Association (MAC/MLA). Her extensive years of committee engagement and dedicated efforts in organizing the Annual Meeting culminated in the honor of her election as the Chair of MAC/MLA in 2010.

At HSL, Karen distinguished herself through advocacy for medical students and her ability to articulate the collective sentiments of our team. Outside of work, she lent her passion and spark to her love for animals and nature; she showcases an impressive green thumb, an enviable garden, and an adorable entourage of cats. She is also known as a purveyor of witty and entertaining quotes, such as "standing in the bread line asking for toast." Whether answering a question about care of an unhappy houseplant, or sharing insight about residency interviews, Karen’s deep knowledge and commitment to service leaves a lasting imprint on our collective experience.

We know we speak for the medical students, faculty, dietitians, pharmacists, and all our patrons in thanking her for sharing her expertise and passion with us at HSL and the SOM. We wish her a well-deserved and fulfilling retirement!

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