Seeing the Hazy Library… Through a Different Set of Eyes

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By: D. Podbielski, Night Access Services Coordinator 

You are standing in front of a very large two story building wondering if you should go in. On preview day the library didn’t look intimidating during the tour, but now that you are here by yourself, it isn’t what you remembered. 

I’ve been told by many of the library’s Student Assistants, that as a freshman, they avoided the library like the plague. “The library was only for upper classmen.” Does this sound like you? What if you could see the library as they see it? 

Did you know… we have between 13-16 Student Assistants working during the semesters, from many different majors, and somewhere between freshman and seniors? Chances are, you might even know a few of them! 

Our Student Assistants have quite a different view of the library. While they are students here, they are also employees of the library. They would like to share with you their perspective of the library. 

First off, the library is filled with a multitude of resources. The use of them will not only make your life easier, it will also save you money. Some of the things the Student Assistants wish they had known about their freshman year are: the many, many multimedia items for checkout, the Reserve collection (textbooks & course materials located at the Checkout Desk), the quick print-computers, the plotters, and lastly, how friendly and helpful the Librarians are. 

As a student, the library is many things to them: a social hang out, a place to relax, and a place to get their homework done. Some of their favorite spots in the library are: the reading room (or nap room for some), the study rooms (again, can be used as a nap room too), and the soft seating areas. Some of their favorite things are the white board tables, multimedia checkout, and getting items from libraries all over the U.S. 

Since they are also employees, I asked them what their favorite part of working for the library was. Here I got a bunch of answers, but what really stood out the most was that they all like helping other students. Some other things were: seeing their friends, meeting new people, working with their co-workers, and getting to do their homework while at work. 

Their perspective of the library has changed, for some, dramatically. They see the library as a collaborative environment, not just a place to study, but their home away from home. (With more resources than they ever could have imagined.) They have an appreciation of what it takes to keep the library running and how friendly everyone is. For them, it’s no longer just a building with books and a place to study. 

So… Take it from the Student Assistants, the library is full of some awesome stuff to make your life a lot easier and more fun. (Not to mention, save you some serious bucks too!) If you are feeling a bit lost, remember everyone here is here to help you. You won’t find anyone shushing you, telling you to eat somewhere else, or to take your feet off of something. Come on in and make yourself at home! 

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