Hello! My name is Kelly and I am an intern in the reference department this semester, which is very exciting. I was thrilled when I found out that I was going to be working here this semester. This is exactly what I wanted to do during my senior year, since next year I am planning on going to grad school for library science. But before I applied, I wanted to make sure I had some experience under my belt, and that I had some idea of what I was getting myself into. Which, as it turns out, I only had some idea of. Library science and reference are harder than I thought. There is a lot of technology involved as well as a thorough knowledge of research techniques and the library catalogue itself. It may look easy when you see a librarian finding a book or pulling up information, but it's not. There's a reason I have to get a degree to know how to do it. The more I work, the more excited I am to go to grad school and experience it myself.
As a librarian I can work at museums, public libraries, colleges or universities, corporate libraries. A ton of places, and all of them I get to work with books and information that I normally wouldn't have access to and would never find on my own. The other day I found a database with images of paleolithic paintings for my art history class, there are several databases for primary sources from the civil war, one devoted to the author Thomas Hardy (which will come in handy for my senior seminar next semester), and I found an Arthurian dictionary on the shelves from the 70s. This is why I love libraries and I want to be a librarian. There is so much information to be found on the most random and wonderful subjects. Every time you open one of these books you discover information that you never would have encountered before and will change you in some small way, if only because it is so unusual. And I get to share that with people. With students and community members and families and faculty. It is so thrilling to learn about the catalogue in this library and all of the ways it can be used and appreciated.
So far, I've been working on reference training. Getting an idea how to answer research questions, and all the databases students can use to find them. I am also starting to plan Banned Books Week with another intern, which I am very excited about. There are a lot of books that I was surprised to discover were banned, especially considering why they are on the list. But more on that soon. There will be some exciting activities involved, so I'll keep you posted. I'll just wrap this first post up by saying that I know this internship is going to be amazing and I look forward to posting all about what I learn and experience.