July 26, 2010

Library Day in the Life: Round 5, Day 1 (Monday)

I participated in Library Day in the Life before, but now that I'm a little more settled in at my job, thought I would document my week with Library Day in the Life Round 5.

Last week was pretty crazy for me with patron confrontations -- mostly people not following or trying to abuse the rules: I had to call security 3 times in one week. I was really hoping this week would be more tame, and relieved that so far it is. Maybe it was the heat!

My day started off in my office where I ordered Role Models by John Waters for our collection based on a review I read in Artforum. I checked the schedule for the week and saw it's going to be a bit crazy with a lot of summer classes coming in for library orientation sessions, which means I will be on the reference desk most of the day.

Working at a community college is definitely a combination of an academic and public library as far as who you help and the types of reference questions asked. Often, I will help someone, who has hardly used a computer before, set up an email account. This might be someone from the public using our public computers or a soon-to-be student starting to register. Today, I had questions about how to change your address with the post office, how to find an old dissertation in the University of North Texas library catalog, and how to get to and fill out FAFSA. I also gave a new student a library tour and showed him where the books are for what he'll be studying. I was also able to finally alert my supervisor to a particular patron who is not a student but always sneaks into the student-only computer classroom we have when I'm busy with questions; I've mentioned him and described him, but today he was finally in the library when she and I were in the same place.

I'm about to go back out to the reference desk and will be there until I'm done for the day. We follow an embedded librarian format, where the librarians work very closely with many instructors; this makes it so helpful when students come in with questions because we know ahead of time what their assignments are, as well as instructor expectations. There are a lot of speech classes getting into their informative speeches this week, so many questions will be on researching a topic for this speech as well as using PowerPoint.

Edit: instead of going to the desk, my supervisor told me I could have some more office time today, so now I am reviewing newly-received books (new books that we had ordered), and will notify instructors in my subject areas of the title, author, call number, and a brief description. If curious, I am responsible for arts and humanities, careers, remedial reading, education, culinary, business, interior design, music, sports/fitness, and health occupations (general, radiology, sonography, respiratory therapy, and surgical technology).... so, a lot!

More tomorrow!