Southern Nazarene University has been privileged enough to have amazing faculty and staff. Each person has a vital role to play in the lives of the students at this university. The Echo has decided to highlight an African American who has been a light to our community, as well as an individual who has graced us with his presence on campus. The man of the hour is none other than our librarian, Joseph Achipa.
Achipa has lived in Yukon, Oklahoma, for that last 16 years, but was originally born in Kenya, where he came from twenty-six years ago. Achipa, for 16 years, he has served as Southern Nazarene’s Reference Librarian, and he said, “I have loved every minute of it!”
A regular workday for Achipa begins at 9 a.m. and ends at 6 p.m. He will usually come in and check any questions on “Ask a Librarian” and answer them. He will also login to reference chat and keep it open for chat questions. In addition, he meets with students in the library for information assistance among other things.
Achipa sees himself working at Southern Nazarene University for a long period of time and has a sense of peace about the establishment. “Everyone has been professional and supportive to me in this place,” said Achipa, with a smile on his face.
He enjoys the students of Southern Nazarene University because they practice hospitality. Achipa mentioned that the students in this community are friendly and are very supportive of one another. He enjoys the community of the student body and how respectful they have been to him in his sixteen years of experience as a librarian.
Achipa said he has not noticed being an African American male affecting him in his job at SNU. Achipa said, “my colleagues and administration treat me as an individual, and that is all that matters. I also knew from the beginning that I needed to live a life of uttermost integrity because I cannot mentor what I am not.” His reply was profound by knowing that respect is received only when given.
The library has been more than Achipa’s occupation; it has been his safe haven. Beyond working with some wonderful students, he has been happy to see good people and assist students when finding information to complete their projects.
Achipa is a great man who sees an individual and chooses to be of service in his occupation cheerfully. He is a great resource as well as a hard worker and is worthy of acclamation.