It’s only Monday, but it does not mean things will not happen in the library. Ten minutes into my reference desk shift a young lady asks for a paper bag. I ask if she can breathe, and she nods no. We give her a shopping bag to breathe into and call security.
I commend Wright College’s security for coming within seconds, and being very compassionate. They were great with the student. It turns out she was on her way to astronomy class, had previously been in the military, and going to Africa in summer on a school study trip. (All of this revealed through her emotional rant.)
I gave her cold water, rubbed her knees, wiped her tears with a tissue, and told her everything would be okay. She was worried about missing class, and was embarrassed she was having anxiety attack in front of people. Security and I reassured her we only wanted her to get better.
Minutes later a team of about 7 or 8 fire fighters arrived with equipment, and a stretcher. They seated her, gave her oxygen, and she was on her way. She received help quickly, and was handled with care.
Hopefully next time I see the student it will be for research help. Image from: http://www.mtv.com/photos/made-season-8/1563810/2621658/photo.jhtml
Yesterday, a student that attended my research workshop insisted I come see her. She offered me coffee and treats on my next visit to the cafeteria. I know the students are relieved to get help. Especially, when I clarify an assignment and they begin to understand how to do research. I like to help them. I don’t know if they realize I get paid too. I have received thank you cards, email, and letters. I wonder if any other librarians have experienced their patrons offering them free services or goods. Image from: http://barterintheboro.com/tag/barter/
A student signed up for Friday’s workshop, but did not show up. No surprise. Fridays are very quiet on campus. I have no plans of doing a workshop on a Friday ever again!
Friday I put tent signs on all the study tables in the library to advertise the workshops. My supervisor sent an email announcement to the person that sends announcements to students and faculty. Hopefully, she will send it out in the next day or so.
Now, it is midterm time, and students have exams. Most of the workshops are scheduled for late April and early May when research papers are due. I hope attendance will increase when the students are freaking out about their papers. Image from: http://grlonthemuv.blogspot.com/
This is the first time in years that I have worked with tattle taped books. The textbooks we get from the bookstore cannot leave the library. The sensors go off, and I run over to search the person’s belongings. Of course, some people try to run downstairs to the open computer lab with the textbooks. I ran after one student, but I lost him somewhere on the first floor. A few hours later he returned to the library. The second time I ran after a student down the steps to the open computer lab. I made him come back upstairs to the library. Not only am a librarian, but I am also security.
I start a little early and I have been staying late. I suggested the workshops, and I want them to happen. I have to stay 30 minutes late and come in 15-20 minutes early to get all the promotional material completed. I don’t stay late expecting to get paid for it. I just really want to finish my work, and have a beautiful product. When I worked full-time it was difficult to get work done in an 8 hour day. Now, I am part-time and it is impossible to complete my work sitting at the reference desk. Of course, it comes with the territory. I was concerned I would be bored working part-time, but the students need my help. So, I am always busy.
Image from: http://nursinglink.monster.com
It is usually dead on Fridays, but it was buzzing around the reference and circulation desk. People had questions about today’s workshops. They wanted to know when the next workshops were going to be held because they had to go to class.
Two young men were walk-ins for citation writing workshop. The older gentlemen that attended the PowerPoint workshop wanted to take me to lunch. He was very grateful. I told him the library has not done a workshop since the early ’90s. I was worried no one would show up. He reassured me he needed the help, and was happy I had the workshops.
I had this horrible feeling last night as I was preparing for my workshops, that not one student would sign up. I dreaded looking at the sign up sheet this morning.
I know some of the students need help writing citations and creating PowerPoint presentations. Wednesday I spent an hour helping a young lady create 3 slides. There are only a few classes if any held on Friday. So, I was hoping I would get the people really struggling, or have assignments due today.
My worries were set aside when I saw that one person signed up for the PowerPoint 2007 workshop, and two people for the APA and MLA style writing workshop. Fridays are really dead, and the reference desk is slow. I had one tour of the library so far. Working part-time I have few responsibilities, and these workshops will keep me busy, help the students, and give me more experience. I am really happy they signed up. Lets see if they show up on this rainy day!
On Monday, a student came to the reference desk 30 minutes before his class started. He needed information about scorpions. I asked the following questions:
“What class is this for?”
“Is there a scorpion in that container?”
He said the class was Speech, and his mother’s scorpion was in the container. Of course, this led to other librarians and staff getting involved. Everyone wanted to see the scorpion. He explained there were two additional scorpions at home. I looked in the stacks, and my colleague searched Gale Virtual Reference Library. I came back with nothing, but he was happy to see the information in the database. In the end, he got the information he needed and sped off to a computer to create his PowerPoint slides. Librarian’s to the rescue again!
Image from: http://picsicio.us/keyword/scorpions%20killer/
I was happy to have the young lady I helped on Monday return to tell me she really appreciated my help. I helped her with her research and her PowerPoint presentation.
She was amazed when I showed her how to insert a link and screenshot into her PowerPoint. She says she does not remember how I did it. She plans on coming back so I can explain it again. I tell the students I sit at the reference desk waiting for them to ask a question. Image from: http://tinyurl.com/4lnrgvq