Chester Fritz Library Updates

News and notes from UND's Chester Fritz Library

Who’s that CFL Staff Member?

Spring Break put us behind, but we are back for our CFL Who’s that Staff Member for March! This months staff member is an excellent chef. She is part of the Technical Services department at CFL and has a bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts from UND. Any guesses who that CFL staff member is?

It’s Teji Kaur

Teji Kaur

This month, we are talking with Teji Kaur, Advanced Cataloging Specialist.

Where did you go to school?

I was born in Ipoh, Perak Malaysia.  I attended Catholic schools from Kindergarten to Grade 4 in Malaysia.  My dad worked as a Railway Inspector.  He was transferred to Singapore in 1966 in the line of his employment.   After completing High School, I took up courses in Cosmetology, Tailoring and Fashion Designing. After graduating in all fields, I enrolled in ITI (Industrial Training Institute) in New Delhi, India.

I came to the USA in 1989 with my son (who was 6 years old) to join my brothers who were both attending UND at that time and were also student employees at the Chester Fritz Library. Both of my brothers graduated from UND and moved to Florida.  I stayed back to hold the flag. I was a full-time single mother, and was also a full-time student and student employee on campus. I worked as a student employee at the Chester Fritz Library from 1990 until I graduated from UND with a degree in Visual Arts in 1997.  

Teji Kaur standing with a cart of books
Teji at Chester Fritz Library

While attending UND, I served on the committee for the International Organization (IO), and I participated in cooking different Asian dishes for the IO’s multicultural events, which fostered diversity among university students and the Grand Forks community.  After graduation, I worked in the Human Services Field working with the disabled as a Direct Service Provider. I applied for a full-time position at the Chester Fritz Library, and I was offered a position as a Library Associate in the year 1999.   

What department or office do you work in at the Chester Fritz Library? Or what does a typical day for you look like at work?

I work in technical services at the Chester Fritz Library. I perform Copy and Advanced Copy Cataloging. 

What made you want to work at a library? 

I started working at CFL as a student employee while attending UND. I enjoyed working at the library, and I admired the work ethics and collaborative spirit of the staff and students. The workplace became like a family to me.  I was fortunate to be offered a full-time position at CFL. Here I have found job satisfaction, a feeling of pleasure and achievement in all that I do, and a feeling of contentment in myself. The position came with responsibilities and achievements where I gained skills, confidence, and self-esteem.

What is the most interesting job you have ever had?

I have enjoyed 17 challenging years in Cosmetology, Tailoring and Fashion designing.  I also love what I do at the Chester Fritz Library. 

While in school, did you have a favorite subject?

I developed an interest in most arts and crafts at a very young age. I gain a sense of fulfillment when I work in the Visual Arts – Painting, Ceramics, Jewelry Making, Mixed Media and Sculpture.

a plate of traditional Malaysian foods
a traditional meal from Malaysia

What is your favorite place to eat in Grand Forks (or nearby) and what do you usually order (or what would you recommend)?

My favorite place to eat in Grand Forks is in my own kitchen. I am a food nerd and I am passionate about cooking. I love to tweak recipes and create my own dishes.  I prefer a home cooked meal over going out to eat.  If I must recommend a place for someone to eat, it will have to be Panda Buffet, The Blue Moose, or the Pizza Ranch.

What is your favorite thing to do in Grand Forks (or nearby)?

Snuggles the Shih Tzu dog
Snuggles the Shih Tzu

I like going to the Farmers Market and fairs in summer. I love picnics in a park with family and friends.  I enjoy cooking and spending time with my fur baby, a Shih Tzu named Snuggles, and with my ten-year-old granddaughter. I love socializing with my friends and coworkers in the convenience of my home.  My home has always been a revolving door for International students, friends, and coworkers. Road trips to Winnipeg are something I enjoy because the food and cultural diversity in Winnipeg reminds me of my home, Malaysia.

What superpower do you wish you had?

I wish I had the ability to manifest a physical presence in two places at once so I can bridge the distance between Malaysia and Grand Forks. 

We will be back next month with another mystery CFL Staff Member! Who would you like to see interviewed?


1 comment
Mamie says:

This was great. Now I feel I know you better. You’re a complex and very interesting person.

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