Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My first month as a librarian

Being a librarian is interesting, but exhausting! Here are some of the projects that I have tackled in my first month as a professional librarian at a vocational school specializing in health services:
  • Helping my coworker tabulate and code all the student and faculty survey data
  • Revising the surveys so they will be easier for everyone next year and will give us (with any luck) more consistent and meaningful data, and fewer answers with no response. (Pro tip: Closed-ended questions are your friend. Unless you absolutely have to have a detailed explanation for something or have absolutely no idea what type of answers to expect, provide a checklist of answers you expect to get, with a space for "other." This will save you hours of trying to figure out how to sort similar-but-just-slightly-different answers.)
  • Graphing and analyzing the survey data so we can support our budget recommendations.
  • Collaborating with my coworker on creating (and revising) a budget.
  • Coordinating with my coworker, instructors, and program directors to figure out what books and resources we need to buy in order to support the degree-granting programs and meet ABHES accreditation standards by this summer.
  • Cataloging (well, finding call numbers for and putting spine labels on) about 150 books
  • Putting together a bulletin board with information on career resources
  • Coordinating with instructors and program directors to make sure all the new students get a short workshop on the resources available in our e-library
  • Redesigning the PowerPoint for and giving these workshops (2 so far)
  • Working with my coworker to write library policies
So it's a pretty full job--there's always a lot to do, even if it is technically part-time. Also, I work at two different campuses, so my time is split between them. (My coworker is at the third campus.) 

Here are a few fun and random things about my job:
  • One of the campuses is really cold. I keep chanting the mantra, "I am a Stark of Winterfell" in the hopes that this will make me tough and awesome enough to handle it. Sometimes it works. Other times I remember that if I really were a Stark of Winterfell, I would have a fur-lined cloak and a direwolf to keep me warm, and then I get cold again.
  • At the other campus, I share an office with an instructor for the Medical Assistant program, and there's a model skeleton in it. I have to keep fighting the urge to dress it up in funny hats.
  • Apparently Mosby is a major publisher of medical reference books. This always makes me think of Ted Mosby from How I Met Your Mother, and I either picture him helping me catalog or wonder what he would be like if he had gone into the medical profession. (Somehow, I picture him being a nurse like Greg Focker in Meet the Parents--he would be a cross between that character and J.D. from Scrubs. Also, he would flirt shamelessly with the attractive female patients and get slapped with so many lawsuits. Unless, of course, he gave into his urge to pretentiously quote poetry around his patients and one of them strangled him with a catheter first.)

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