Miss Amber took on two meanings as kids, parents and library patrons came to say goodbye to Amber Wyzik Tuesday at her "sweet send-off." She is preparing to leave her post as Avon children and teen services manager.
Starting Monday, the North Granby resident will begin training as a school media specialist at in Granby.
As people flooded the children's floor at , signed her photo book, gave her hug after hug, and thanked her over cupcakes, she said that leaving was bittersweet.
“It’s been really, really hard. People are supportive of my decision,” said Wyzik, who added that she went back and forth for a month before accepting the job in July. “It just makes me sad to say bye to them all, or see you later.”
But to her coworkers and those close to her, it’s no surprise that she’s making a transition to a public school library. Working as a school librarian or teacher has always been her dream.
“When the job opened up, it was a gateway to the school system,” Wyzik said. “I’m looking forward to working in the schools.”
The school holds a special place in her heart because she has a baby on the way who will go there.
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“It’s too good to be true to be having a child,” she said. “Every kid in Granby will go to the school for K-2.”
After reading coverage in The Granbys Patch about Granby Public Schools’ , she went to the district’s website and saw there was an opening.
There, she’ll have the opportunity to use new tools and resources and her creativity “to create something new and exciting for the school” and teach “library lessons to help students become lifelong learners,” she said.
At a young age, Wyzik was fond of books and took every moment she could to read. For her, they were an escape.
“I was the kid who got in trouble in class for reading,” said Wyzik. “I really like realistic fiction and love stories about someone who conquered something in life or struggled.”
But as she moves on to a new job, she said that she’ll miss the library that sparked her career.
“The first thing I’m going to miss here is the staff and patrons that have become like family,” said Wyzik, who noted that many of them came to see her and Aaron Wyzik get married last spring.
She started part-time at the Avon library as the children’s library specialist in 2005.
“I knew right away I wanted to connect that to teaching and the best way to do that was to teach library skills,” Wyzik said.
Prior to that, she was a pre-school teacher from 1998 until 2005 in Southwick, MA, her hometown. In 2008, she graduated from Westfield State University in Massachusetts with a degree in elementary education. By 2010, she earned a master’s degree from Southern Connecticut State University in library science and school media. In February of that year, she was promoted to a full-time position overseeing programming for children and teens.
“The library is the reason I’m going into library sciences,” she said of Avon.
Wyzik was always creating new programs from bringing in an inflatable planetarium to hosting arts and crafts days. The diverse programming drew kids to the library who may not have come otherwise. Some will “become life time library users because one day I did a program about race cars,” she said.
Her last day is Friday. Library officials will be interviewing candidates to fill her position soon and there could be a new librarian in place by October.
In the meantime, the new teen librarian will be helping out with the children’s department as needed and running storytimes for 2-year-olds. Over the past year, she worked part-time as a children’s library specialist.
Editor's Note: If there's something in this article that you think should be corrected or if you have questions or a news tip give Avon Patch Editor Jessie Sawyer a ring at 860-356-6339 or shoot her an e-mail at Jessie.Sawyer@patch.com.