The purpose of this study is to explore how the rise of the new public management (NPM) culture in higher education affected librarians. Librarians are a central part of the traditional intellectual model of academia, whose professional ethos is challenged and threatened by the new market-oriented culture. Using a qualitative methodology based on semi-structured interviews with managers and professional staff of academic libraries at a public university, the present study provides insights into the perceptions of non-faculty professionals on the infiltration of NPM into higher education. Our findings reflect a cultural appropriation of integration taking place under the dominant NPM, resulting in a hybrid traditional-NPM culture. Theoretical and practical implications of the effect of NPM on professional staff of academia are offered.