by Erinn Aspinall
Jonathan Koffel is a familiar name within the University of Minnesota Medical School, having served as the school’s library liaison since he began working at the Bio-Medical Library in 2011.
Koffel will continue working with the Medical School — and with partners across the Academic Health Center (AHC) — as the library’s Emerging Technology and Innovation Strategist, a position he began in January of this year.
Koffel’s new role has come through a natural progression. Over the last year, he has been instrumental in establishing new technology-enabled services within the Bio-Medical Library, including the library’s Tech Lab/Virtual Reality Studio, productivity computers, and Data Visualization Center.
Janice Jaguszewski, Director of the Health Sciences Libraries, recognizes the importance of integrating technology into libraries in support of the lifecycle of knowledge and developed Koffel’s new position to address related needs within the AHC.
“Jonathan has done a deep dive on emerging technologies, providing leadership for both the Bio-Medical Library and the AHC on ways to integrate new technology into our programming,” says Jaguszewski. “He has been a key contributor to the vision we are developing for the Bio-Medical Library as we continue to integrate into the educational landscape of the AHC. The pilot services that have been developed by Jonathan — such as virtual reality — will serve as important testbeds for current and future investments and collaborations.”
Koffel said he looks forward to building this new position and working closely with colleagues in the Academic Health Center and across campus.
“I’ve already had great conversation with my library colleagues — as well as faculty, instructional designers, academic technologists and others,” says Koffel. “This is great opportunity to understand, share, and build upon ideas and tools that will advance innovative and interprofessional work within the AHC and across the campus.”
Koffel’s colleague, Connie Bongiorno, continues in her role as liaison to the Medical School and a second Medical School liaison will be hired to fill Koffel’s vacancy.