Hurst makes a long term impact on students who enter careers where they use those materials in their everyday jobs.
After 35 years at Miami University — 22 of them as the business librarian in the University Libraries — Susan Hurst is retiring on September 8. Hurst leaves a reputation for excellence that was honored by the board of trustees with the rank of Administrator Emerita.
Like many Miamians, Hurst’s relationship with Miami is long and storied. After graduating in 1984, she joined the food service team. She fondly remembers working in the bakery at Shriver Center; however, her career trajectory took a turn when she found a position in the Libraries. Hurst developed a unique perspective and deep affection for the library system after holding multiple positions from working in the stacks, to a position in special collections, to time in technical services. Seeing her future with the library community, she took a leave of absence in 1998 to complete her master of library science at Indiana University. Hurst returned to her alma mater as the business librarian, and the rest is history.
Hurst quickly earned a reputation of excellence with her students.
Students and Susan Hurst during New Graduate Student Orientation Aug 2018
“They line up for her office hours year after year,” remarked Kevin Messner, head of the Advise & Instruct department. He described the view of Hurst’s office as a “constant march of marketing students.” The Farmer School of Business is the largest cohort of students on campus, with entry-level courses usually consisting of 14 sections of 60 students. Hurst was up to the challenge.
“She makes it less overwhelming for the students —she lets them start at 2nd if not 3rd base.” said Dr. Gillian Oakenfull, professor and faculty director of diversity and inclusion. “She is tenacious about her resource compiling. She doesn't just put together a guide to the databases for marketing in general — she dives deep into resources that are company-specific or country-specific.”
Hurst makes “a long term impact on students who enter careers where they use those materials in their everyday jobs,” said Tim Greenlee, senior associate dean and professor in the Farmer School of Business.
Hurst is not only collaborative with the students but she works collaboratively with faculty. “She’s allowing me to do more.” said Dr. Gillian Oakenfull. Her energy and ability to communicate amongst displiciplines allows her to tailor each resource set to a specific class, even when a class like a capstone may have an entirely new focus each year. Faculty members remark that even they find new perspectives in the resources that Hurst provides.
Through and through, Hurst is known for her supportive relationships with students, faculty, and staff, and it is her energy and spirit that people will fondly remember. Elizabeth Brice, former assistant dean for technical services & special collections, remembers Hurst is “one of the very few people who can make me laugh out loud.”