Paved by Good Intentions




I was thrilled to be accepted into the University of Michigan for my Masters of Science in Information, but it was an unexpected deviation as my health derailed my original plan to pursue a career in criminal law. As I enrolled in classes with my peers who intended to pursue careers as librarians and archivists, I was the odd person out asking myself how I could market my research in these courses to law schools in the future. I had always assumed I had incompatible passions, a love for history, literature, and research coupled with disinterest in pursuing a single field towards a Ph.D., and that my legal career would support my hobbies in the cultural heritage sector. With a heavy dose of irony I walked into “SI519 Intellectual Property and Information Law,” my first graduate school class, determined to use it to confirm to law schools my decision to pursue criminal law, but walked across the stage at graduation ecstatic to build a career at the intersection of copyright law and cultural heritage. Fantastic mentors, supportive networks, and timely court rulings and legislative changes, paved a path and provided me a stepping stone into a career at the intersection of my passions in a field I had not known existed. I entered the field at an increasingly critical time and had unique access to practitioners that helped create opportunities for engagement without which, I would not have had the opportunity to accept a tenure track librarian position at the age 24 as my first full time job out of library school.


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Author Biography

  • Emily G. Finch

    JD/LLM Candidate at the University of Miami School of Law and Former Kansas State University Scholarly Communication and Copyright Librarian


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Hachette Book Group, INC et al. v. Internet Archive, 1:20-cv-04160 (United States District Court Southern District of New York 2020). Retrieved from

Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2020, 17 U.S.C. §§ 1501–1511 (2020). Retrieved from




How to Cite

Finch, E. G. (2022). Paved by Good Intentions. Journal of Copyright in Education & Librarianship, 6(1).