Some of us are taking part in Library Day in the Life Round 7 (or #libday7) and writing about it in our individual blogs but we thought we’d also take a moment to do a quick Hack Library School edition so you can get an idea of what we do from day-to-day, whether we are in school, working, summer vacation, in between, etc. Enjoy!
Nicole: This has been a really different week for me at work. Each librarian in my group covers different industries and it can be really cyclical and right now my industries have been fairly quiet so I have not had a great deal of research to do recently. So it’s given me a chance to work on two other projects that need my attention. And both are really making use of the skills I learned in library school! The first is a weeding project. My company is moving to a new building and the research services group will have less space (read: fewer shelves). So we are going through all of our subscriptions and books to see what HAS to be saved and what can be accessed digitally. Since I’ve still got just under a year at my role, I’m so nervous I’m going to get rid of something that someone will want and we won’t have a way to get it. So it’s been a bit of a learning process and has been a good excuse to really go through the resources that I’m “responsible” for in my industries.
The second project has been the most challenging. I’ve been assisting my manager with developing a content evaluation system. We are trying to create a template that would evaluate resources that the research services group and the employees use, especially ones that are considered “core”. Our hope is that the form would have both qualitative information as well as a quantitative type matrix to compare several resources in one space. We would then be able to use this form when users asked us about different resources and what they could be compared to. Even products that are considered peers can have really different types of information so I’m just trying to take it one step at a time when comparing and trying to get a grasp of what is important to relay to users for each source. I’ve definitely trying to have my “evaluation” hat on that I learned about in my last semester of school!
Heidi: Even though I’m not in school anymore, and am instead the library director at Muir Library, I sure do look at my notes from classes often! The first few months I was at this job, people were either hesitant or unaware of my ability to find information for them. In the past two weeks, this has been changing. I get calls, emails, facebook messages and visits from patrons who want information about anything from the latest Fancy Nancy book to choosing nature books for Garden Club to finding general information about bipolar disorder to finding books for a bookclub that has been meeting for over 50 years! It’s quite amazing! Although I am the library director, I spend most of my hours interacting with patrons and “scribbling” notes from them into a GoogleDoc. Fortunately, my notes from all my classes are also in GoogleDocs, so they’re easy to retrieve when I need them at a moment’s notice. The ones I look at most often are from my marketing & strategic planning class, collection development (I also look at the actual textbook from that class), my RA classes with Nancy Pearl and my reference courses.
Tracking my activities during #libday7 has been quite interesting. I’m noticing just how much I actually do get done every day even if I’m not necessarily crossing things off my to-do list. It’s a good thing I’m good at multi-tasking! And when I’m not playing the #libdirector role, I’m in the garden, reading, or spending time with my pup and fiancee.
I’m currently on my summer break, which I’m quite happy about! I had taken a summer class for the first session and I was so busy, I didn’t think I would make it to this point. I currently am still working on the IUPUI digital library team. I’ve recently started a project digitizing papers and essays that were read for the Indianapolis Literary Club around the turn of the 20th century. The work never really slows down in my department! I’ve also taken up my new duties as part of the student group here (ALISS), as the Chief Information Officer so I’ve revamped our website. What can I say? I like keeping busy. I’ve been spending my days working, volunteering and relaxing in the evenings with my cats. You can read more about my #libday7 on my blog!
Turner: As a student worker in Oregon Health & Science University’s Library, today my day is split between the Inter-Library Loan department and the Circulation desk. The first five hours of my shift are in ILL, where I am processing the constant inflow of lending requests. I have to hunt down the article/book, and depending on the request I download, scan or physically package and ship the material. The last three hours of my shift are spent staffing the circulation desk, where I will be preparing my Capstone Presentation in between patrons. I have class this weekend, and my cohort members and I will each have 7 minutes to sum up the past two years of our library school education. Wish me luck!
Lauren: I recently started my new job (!), which is actually my former internship, so I haven’t had to make an overwhelming transition. My job is fairly unique – my title in the federal system is Librarian, and my title at the library is Assistant Editor. I work on the Air University Library Index to Military Periodicals, and my main responsibilities are selecting articles for inclusion into the AULIMP (which is my favorite part — the POWER!), marking them up so our data technicians will know how the articles should be typed into the database, and reviewing the indexing work of the Reference Librarians and Bibliographers who provide headings for the articles. Thus, each day I do a combination of selecting, marking and reviewing. The Editing section also receives a few titles that aren’t assigned to anyone, so we index them ourselves, which is really fun. Indexing is essentially cataloging, but without AACR2 and cataloging rules. Today, I did a little bit of all of that, as well as went on a shopping excursion with the Staff Association officers (of which I am vice-president) to buy supplies/refreshments for our Staff Professional Development Day tomorrow. I will be presenting on my and my co-authors’ journal article, so I need to finish working on my presentation!
Julia: Most of my energy has been focused on moving to Tallahassee. We got in late Saturday night and I finally got to meet Micah and a few other awesome Tally folks! Now that I’m here, I’m looking forward to starting the PhD program. I’ll be teaching, so presumably I’ll be prepping for that soon, and I’m hoping to start some new research projects. I also have a ‘to read’ list that I’m pretty excited about. Right now, I’m just taking it easy and trying to get some sleep!
Britt: I’m in a sort of limbo at the moment– I’m employed as a substitute librarian in a public library, so I’m waiting for the calls to come in! While I’m waiting, I visit libraries a lot– and usually leave with a big stack of things to read, either for RA purposes or just for fun. Today I met with a student who is taking over my role as grant administrator for the Nidorf Collective @ UCLA (a student org that provides books and book talks to incarcerated teens). The grant is due in about a month, so we went over the parts that need to be addressed now, because there is a lot of red tape in dealing with the justice system. Tonight, I’m going to send out some thank-you notes for recent interviews/applications, including one for a part-time outreach position I’m really excited about, and RSVP for my first union meeting as a librarian. Though I’m not really a member (part-time librarians don’t pay dues), they’ve been really receptive to the new group of sub librarians hired into the system, and I’m eager to return the feeling! I hope to be active in the union once I’m full-time, so attending the meetings now is a great source of information, and a good place to network.
Rebecca: I’m in an interesting position because not only is my summer class in full-swing, I work two part-time jobs in two different types of libraries so my days always look different. Tuesdays are my busiest and longest days because I work both jobs and have class, so here goes: after walking my dog, I head to campus for class. After class, I go home to eat a quick lunch before rushing off to my internship at Austin Public Library. As a Connected Youth intern, I monitor the Teen Center computer lab, help with homework and technology-related issues, process books for the youth collection, and assist with teen programs. Afterwards, I eat dinner with my boyfriend, watch a little television, and sit down at my desk for my chat reference shift (9pm to midnight) for the University of Texas libraries. When the chat is slow, I work on homework and catch up on emails and blogs. Then, finally, sweet sweet sleep.
Micah: My goal to blog my entire week for libday7 was thwarted on Monday when my wife decided to break her foot playing soccer. That said, I don’t know that I would have had much to say anyways. Currently, I’m working part-time at Florida State University on a Scholarly Communication Task Force. What the hell is Scholarly Communication [PDF], you ask? Well… its the cycle of research and knowledge output in the university. So, I spend 90% of my days at work reading about open access, how digital scholarship fits or doesn’t with promotion and tenure policies, how other schools are working toward these same initiatives, etc. I am really fascinated by this topic and my interests in digital humanities and open data are dovetailing nicely with this work.
Then I spend the other 90% of my days in meetings. Productive, exciting, interesting meetings with important administrators on campus (provost, dean of faculties, faculty, librarians, etc), but often I feel like I could be doing much more work if there weren’t so many meetings. It turns out, this is just they way things are accomplished in the university framework. I took some notes on my work day Monday and if you’re interested, here is a wiki I created for some early organization of my work and here is a libguide I’m working on for the task force when I’m not in meetings. Speaking of… I think I was supposed to email the minutes from Wednesdays meeting around… yesterday. Back to work!