WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — The Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach is celebrating a teen librarian who recently received a statewide recognition.
Sophie Meridien was named Florida’s Most Outstanding New Librarian of the Year by the Florida Library Association.
According to the organization, Meridien is a passionate advocate for all teenagers who understands the importance of equal access to popular books for all teenagers.
HELPING TEENS THRIVE 🎒 📚 ✏️“Sophie Meridien is an outstanding librarian whose hard work and creativity help make the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach a place where teenagers thrive...” #wptv #wflx #BlackHistoryMonth @MandelPL pic.twitter.com/7d7o6IP9M8— Linnie Supall WPTV (@LinnieSupall) February 16, 2022
“Sophie Meridien is an outstanding librarian whose hard work and creativity help make the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach a place where teenagers thrive,” reads a statement on the Florida Library Association website.
Meridien is determined to keep opportunities for tutoring and mentorship within reach, especially for students of color.
“It's hugely important for our teens to see they've got a Black teen librarian,” said Meridien. “Someone who really wants to make sure that they're getting books with characters who look like them.”
The teen librarian is steadfast in her mission to provide free homework help to students at the Mandel Public Library on weekday afternoon and evenings.
“You have kids coming into the library and you want to expose them to wonderful literature, but you also want to be there as a mentor and sometimes even as a friend,” said Lisa Hathaway, director of the Mandel Public Library. “We're so fortunate that Sophie does that here.”
When Meridien is not in the library, she’s in the community providing equal access to popular books and author visits – especially to teenagers in the juvenile detention center.
“When I asked what can I do in the juvenile detention center, we decided that I would run a little book club and it's been just so rewarding,” said Meridien.
Meridien also has a book coming out this July called ‘The Witchery.'
portrait of a debuting author holding her book for the first time ✨ pic.twitter.com/z8fsz3s7wg— sophie (@sisabellewrites) January 30, 2022
For more information about the free homework help available at the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach, click here.