The Deputy Director and Head of Research and Education of the Health Sciences Library, Emily Hurst leads a team of health sciences librarians and works to strengthen library support for all five schools on the MCV Campus as well as VCU Health and the Richmond community. She strives to create an environment of collaboration across VCU Libraries and across campus.
She encourages health sciences library faculty and staff to work together to create programs, team teach and build research skills so that students and faculty can benefit from information that is cross-departmental.
Hurst served as Interim Director and Associate University Librarian for 2020-2021.
Beyond her management responsibilities, she organizes educational programs at the library. Popular programs include those that invite speakers to address health or wellness themes from the VCU Common Book. She also leads a health sciences documentary and discussion series and brings in exhibits from the National Library of Medicine on timely topics such as health insurance and domestic violence prevention.
She is currently leading efforts to rename and reposition the Community Health Education Center as the VCU Health and Wellness Library and enhance outreach to provide reliable consumer health information to patients, family members, health care providers and community members.
She has a background in patient and consumer health as well as experience as a course designer and trainer, focused on mobile technology solutions. Improving access to health information is at the core of her work and she is expert at using high-quality health information resources to provide patients, health consumers and health care professionals with access to accurate health information.
Before joining the VCU faculty, Hurst had librarian and technology roles at the Texas Medical Center Library, Houston Academy of Medicine, through the National Network of Library of Medicine, South Central Region, and at Briscoe Library, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio.
Hurst has coordinated and developed many opportunities for learning for faculty, staff and students across the VCU community. In 2019, she was recognized as a champion of Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Care at VCU and received the Excellence in Interprofessionalism Award. Other recipients represented faculty from pharmacy, occupational therapy and nursing. Hurst is the first librarian to receive the honor.
M.S. Library Science, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, 2008
Certificate in International Development, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, 2008
B.A. history, University of St. Thomas, 2005
Consumer Health Information Specialist certificate, 2008, 2014