Degrees and Certifications:
My name is Melissa Engel-Unruh, and I am the library media specialist at CASHS. But I did not start my career in the library.
I earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Education with dual certification in English and French from Shippensburg University in December, 1993. I substituted in the Chambersburg Area School District in the spring of 1994, and at the start of the 1994-95 school year, I received full-time employment at J. Frank Faust Jr. High. From 1994-2000, I taught English at Faust and also served as the choreographer for the school musicals. In 1996 I began working part time as a Learning Specialist at Shippensburg University’s Learning Assistance Center and continued to do so until 1999. In March of 1999, I was published in The English Journal, and in December of that same year I earned my Master of Reading degree from Shippensburg University.
In 2000, I transferred to the Chambersburg Area Senior High School, where I taught English, speech, yearbook journalism, and computer design in the media; I also continued to serve as the choreographer for the school musicals. At the time of the birth of my first child in 2004, I began studying to become a school librarian and began seeking professional development opportunities in the field of reading. As a result of these professional development opportunities, I began serving as a district trainer for West Ed’s reading framework, Reading Apprenticeship, in 2006. A year later, I had my second child and was published in Learning & Media, a publication from the Pennsylvania School Librarian’s Association.
At the conclusion of my School Library and Information Media Specialist studies, I received Mansfield University's "Outstanding Student Librarian" Award. In December of 2008, I received my Master’s in Education in School Library and Information Technologies from Mansfield University, and in 2010, I was published in the journal Library Media Connections. Since 2008, I have worked as a school library media specialist at CASHS. I also have served as the school's International Baccalaureate (IB) Extended Essay Coordinator since 2016, coordinating student work in a rigorous independent research project that spans two years and culminates in a 4,000 word essay.
My teaching philosophy is that every student is capable of meeting high expectations in regards to learning, and it is my role to provide opportunities and resources for students and staff to develop their information and technological literacy with 21st-century skills, to foster a life-long love of reading and learning, and to adhere to the principles of intellectual freedom and the Library Bill of Rights.