Summers are strange things, most frequently I am asked by my friends and family, what I do all day since the students are all gone, and why I still work full time. Most people believe that summers at an academic library are similar to a high school teacher’s hours (that they are off unless they are stuck teaching summer school). No, here at Masland Library, we begin on all the projects that were too noisy or disruptive to work on during classes. So what do I do?
I work on Web Content; while the student workers are out in the stacks doing inventory.
We create lists to review the inventory scans; while the student workers continue to work on inventory.
Now a second student worker is working on finding missing items while I create a LibGuide.
Then towards the middle of summer we realize…all of the items we have reclassed and cataloged have filled the shelves so that there is no more room. Now we have to begin selective shifting (there have been summers where the whole library has needed shifting).
So one student worker is shifting while another is doing inventory; another student is processing all of those reclass and new books.
Now someone is double-checking the new items; while more new items are being processed.
Now we have to shift another area while another student is STILL working on inventory.
Towards the end of summer we realize all the other small things that need to be accomplished before Weekend of Welcome; new signs for the shelves; that shelf over there has been switched with the one above it; Oh No! another whole series has come in for Biblical Reference and we need to shift everything again. What do you mean there are information literacy sessions being held Weekend of Welcome…now I need a PowerPoint. Goodness me the Reserves still haven’t been collected…we need to get them before the new students do. RA’s are back…eke that means that students will be here in a matter of days!
Student workers are madly cleaning up shelves and placing end cap labels on.
Reserves are being pulled and activated.
All tutorials are being reviewed and information literacy classes are being taught.
Summers are strange things. While there is definitely fewer people in the Library and fewer reference questions we are preparing to give students the best service, cleanest library, and best resources available so that they can utilize the resources we have for them.