"I am fairly new to sewing. What is the Serger used for other than hemming? I am thinking about purchasing one,but if hemming is all I would be able to do, I'm not sure it would be beneficial to me. Also, what serger is recommended for a beginner (about 3 years experience in quilting)?"
I think the most important thing to start with is a "Serger Form".
What you are going to do is create is a notebook of samples with tensions settings, threads used and on which fabric, as well as techniques. If you don't have a spare notebook, you might want to get one. You will also need paper to use in your notebook. You will then pin each sample to a sheet of paper adding any notes to help remind you of what you did, or why you did it a particular way and then slip it into a plastic sleeve and into a notebook (each of my machines has a sampler book as each machine has different tension settings).
This notebook or Sampler you will be making will save you hours each time you want to make something. Once your book is started, you will be able to go back to your sampler, open it to the stitch you want to do, change thread, adjust the tensions, do a test on the fabric, fine tune for a balanced stitch and serge.
On your first piece of paper you will write down all of your settings as they are on your machine. I assume that you are set up with a balanced stitch. Once these numbers are written down, you can always go back to them.
On your paper you will need to write/print out across the top...
I use mine to ruffle fabric.. Works great. I was making an heirloom Christening gown for my great niece and all the puffing was made with a serger. It's fantastic for sewing knits. It's not just for hems I do all the seams with mine. I actually have 2 of them and one is a cheaper Singer that I bought at Walmart and sews beautifully.. The other is a little more expensive and most people turn up their nose when you mention Euro-Pro but I've had this one for 8 yrs and it's still going strong. I just make sure they get dusted out everytime I use them.
I've put in zippers (using the piping foot), used the blanket and/or ladder stitch to finish fleece blankets, rolled hems on napkins, quilting, applying elastic, gathers (using the gathering foot or differential feed). I've purchased the workbook which sews so many techniques. I have the Babylock Evolve!