Zara Wilkinson

Reference and Instruction Librarian
Librarian, Robeson Library
Library Faculty, Camden


Paul Robeson Library

300 North 4th St.
Camden, NJ 08102

Zara T. Wilkinson is a Reference and Instruction Librarian (Librarian II with Tenure) at the Paul Robeson Library at Rutgers University-Camden. She serves as liaison to the Rutgers-Camden departments of English and Communication, Education, Digital Studies, Philosophy and Religion, and Visuial, Media, and Performing Arts. In addition to providing reference and instruction services to these departments and developing associated collections, Zara coordinates the Robeson Library’s outreach and instruction programs, forging and maintaining strong relationships with the First-Year Writing Program and multiple offices and departments across campus. She delivers library orientations for RAs, TAs, international students, the EOF Summer Insitute, Rutgers Future Scholars, and new faculty; staffs tables at information fairs for new, admitted, and prospective students; and co-chairs the Paul Robeson Library Events & Exhibits Committee. As the Camden representative on the Open and Affordable Textbooks (OAT) Program Team, Zara is also responsible for all aspects of the OAT program at Rutgers-Camden. The OAT program has generated an estimated cost savings of $5.7 million for over 35,000 students at Rutgers University--including over $796,000 in savings for students in Camden.

Zara is active in local and national organizations, including the American Library Association (ALA), the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), and the Library Leadership and Management Association (LLAMA). In 2016, she became the first elected chair of the LLAMA New Professionals Section. For many years, she coordinated the New Jersey Library Association College and University Section’s job shadowing program for library school students interested in academic librarianship, and she continues to serve on the organizing committee of MentorNJ, a state-wide mentoring initiative for librarians and library staff sponsored by the New Jersey State Library, LibraryLinkNJ, and the New Jersey Library Association Professional Development Committee. Zara was named an American Library Association Emerging Leader in 2014 and received an IFLA National Committee Fellowship in 2016.

Prior to joining the Rutgers University Libraries in 2012, Zara held positions at Temple University, Swarthmore College, and Point Park University.  She has earmed a BA in English from the University of Pittsburgh, an MA in English from West Chester University, and an MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh.


M.L.I.S.  Library and Information Science, 2010, University of Pittsburgh

M.A. English Literature, 2009, West Chester University of Pennsylvania

B.A. English Literature, 2007, University of Pittsburgh

         Certificate, Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2007

Research Interests
  • Outreach/community engagement
  • Early career librarianship
  • Textbook affordability
  • Gender and media studies

Todorinova, Lily and Zara Wilkinson, "Incentivizing faculty for open educational resources (OER) adoption and open textbook authoring," The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 46, no. 6 (2020): 1-10.

Still, Julie and Zara Wilkinson, Eds. Buffy to Batgirl: Essays on Female Power, Evolving Femininity, and Gender Roles in Science Fiction and Fantasy. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2019.

Todorinova, Lily and Zara Wilkinson. "Closing the Loop: Students, Academic Libraries, and Textbook Affordability." The Journal of Academic Librarianship 45 no. 3 (2019), 268-277.

Wilkinson, Zara. “You’re Hired! Now What? Positioning Yourself for Success in a New Job.” In The Future Academic Librarian’s Toolkit: Finding Success on the Job Hunt and in Your First Job, edited by Megan Hodge, 99-113. Chicago, IL: ACRL (Association of College and Research Libraries) Press, 2019.

Todorinova, Lily and Zara Wilkinson. "Finding New Angles: OER Student Survey Data and the Academic Library Narrative." In Recasting the Narrative: The Proceedings of the ACRL 2019 Conference, April 10-13, 2019, Cleveland, OH, edited by Dawn M. Mueller, 211-2015. Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries, 2019.

Ackerman, Erin, Jennifer Hunter, and Zara Wilkinson. "The Availability and Effectiveness of Research Supports for Early Career Academic Librarians." The Journal of Academic Librarianship 44 no. 5 (2018), 553-568.

Fitzgerald, William T. and Zara Wilkinson, "Pressing the Reset Button On (Information) Literacy in FYW: Opportunities for Library and Writing Program Collaboration in Research-based Composition." In Teaching Information Literacy and Writing Studies: Volume 1, First-Year Composition Courses, edited by Grace Veach, 71-84. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2018.

Wilkinson, Zara. “Where No Girl Has Gone Before? Teenage Girls in Star Trek’s Strong Female Future.” In To Boldly Go: Essays on Gender and Identity in the Star Trek Universe, edited by Nadine Farghaly and Simon Bacon, 219-235. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2017.

Wilkinson, Zara. “Advertisements for Part-Time Library Positions in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.” Library Management 37 no. 1/2 (2016): 68-80.

Wilkinson, Zara. “To Boldly Grow Up: Navigating Female Adolescence in Star Trek and Lost in Space.” Science Fiction Film and Television 9 no. 3 (2016): 393-415.

Wilkinson, Zara. "A Human Resources Dilemma? Analyzing Emergent Themes in the Experiences of Part-Time Librarians." Journal of Library Administration, 55, no. 5 (2015): 343-361.

Wilkinson, Zara. "Roving Reference: Taking the Library to its Users." In Rethinking Library Reference for Academic Libraries, edited by Carrie Forbes and Jenny Bowers, 85-98. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2015.

Wilkinson, Zara and Julie Still. “The Use of Librarians as Occupational Study Populations in Social Science Research” Library Review, 63, no. 1/2, (2014): 2-14.

Wilkinson, Zara. “Should We Be Friends? The Question of Facebook in Academic Libraries.” In An Education in Facebook?, edited by Tama Leaver and Mike Kent, 212-226. New York: Routledge, 2014.

Wilkinson, Zara and Vibiana Bowman Cvetkovic. “Terrorism, Piracy, and Porn: Reference Ethics in the Twenty-first Century.” In Reinventing Reference: How Public, Academic, and School Libraries Deliver Value in the Age of Google, edited by Vibiana Bowman Cvetkovic and Katie Elson Anderson, 13-26. Chicago: American Library Association, 2014.

Wilkinson, Zara. “Rock Around the (Tenure) Clock: Research Strategies for New Academic Librarians," New Library World 144, no. 1/2 (2013): 54 - 66.

Wilkinson, Zara. “The Over-Underemployed Librarian: Managing the Full-Time Stress of Multiple Part-Time Jobs.” In Job Stress and the Librarian: Coping Strategies from the Professionals, edited by Carol Smallwood and Linda Wade, 169-175. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2013.

Wilkinson, Zara. “The Lady of the Rings: Female Containment, Female Resistance, and the Magical Circus.” MP: An Online Feminist Journal 3, no. 2 (2013): 147-171.