Meet Kiski: Leslie the Librarian

When you think of a library, what do you picture? Do you see a large, dark room full of musty old books or a bustling hub of multi-media activity and a friendly librarian? If your idea of a library is the latter, you already have a pretty good understanding of what The Kiski School library is like. While many libraries struggle to stay relevant in an increasingly digital age, the Pidgeon Library has embraced technology. Leslie Poston, The Kiski School’s head librarian, loves the challenge of transforming people’s perception of what libraries are. She wouldn’t have become a librarian if libraries were still quiet, dark spaces filled with old books. Leslie prefers the role of friendly, tech-savvy librarian to the grumpy stereotype who’s always shushing students.

“I don’t think I would have become a librarian before the age of the Internet,” Leslie said. “I don’t think I would have liked all the hard copy stuff and the card catalog. I like the instant access of web resources and that everyone has a voice and you can instantly access so many different perspectives from online research.”

After 14 years of working as the librarian at Kiski, Leslie still loves her job.

“My favorite part is the variety of things I can do because I’m not tied to any one department,” Leslie said.

Leslie loves working at the John A. Pidgeon Library because her job involves so much more than organizing books. Part of her job does involve curating quality content for the library. However, this content is not just print. She curates podcasts, kindles, audibles, ebooks, databases, and content in all kinds of formats for students to use.

Leslie is also really involved with Kiski’s makerspace where she can teach information literacy skills to go along with the different projects students work on.

“Many libraries are involved with creating makerspaces so the students can use the tools in hands-on activities,” she said. “I’m involved with the class we have called, Inventionland. My role in that class is research and development. We’re researching patents, manufacturers and manufacturing processes, and market research.”

As a modern librarian, Leslie wants everyone to know that The Kiski School’s library is a hub of activity where all the librarians are friendly and helpful and don’t prowl the shelves shushing students.

“We’re really trying to retire this notion that we’re just the place with the books. We’re a place for engaging, lifelong learning, and pursuing personal interests in whatever format.”

Built in 1993, Leslie’s library has two special collections unique to the Pidgeon Library. One is the Emerson Collection, which was curated in honor of Mr. Pidgeon, a former headmaster and the library’s namesake. The collection includes some artifacts, first-edition books, and other items significant to Ralph Waldo Emerson. Emerson was one of Mr. Pidgeon’s favorite American writers. The other special collection is an exhibit on Ernest Hemingway, which includes a large collection of first-edition books, artifacts, and artwork.

You can learn more about resources available at the Pidgeon Library by contacting us!
1888 Brett Lane, Saltsburg, PA 15681   |   (877) 547-5448
Established in 1888, The Kiski School is one of the oldest, private, all-boys, college preparatory boarding schools in Pennsylvania and the United States.  Home to 200 boys, Kiski offers an academically rigorous curriculum that includes Advanced and Honors courses, 12 varsity sports, and a community that allows boys to thrive through project-based learning and self-discovery. Kiski's beautiful, 350-acre campus is located in Saltsburg, Pennsylvania, 30 miles east of Pittsburgh, PA.

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