The first month of the internship has really flown by! I have had a chance to meet with several departments and I feel like I have gained a much better understanding of the operations of the library as a whole–how the different departments interact with and impact each other to make library services more effective for the community. It has been great to run into the other interns as well–to check in and hear how our experiences are similar and different.
So far this experience has provided me the opportunity to discover (or rediscover) some of the things that I am passionate about and ways that I can make a difference for people. In the course of one of my projects, I revisited best practices on using media with young children. This area really fascinates me because media in recent years has had such a huge impact on not only being a kid, but raising kids as well. Providing thoughtful guidelines and educating caregivers about appropriate and effective media use is so important and a key element of promoting early literacy.
I also feel like I am starting to see how many of the things I learned about in various classes can be applied in a real library setting. For example, after reading blogs and articles about libraries that have retooled picture book organization to make the collection easier to browse and more user friendly, I now have a chance to join in the conversation about how to undertake a big project like that. Where would you start? What challenges and concerns need to be addressed, and how do you make changes that will be beneficial to the community without having a huge impact on the level of service that’s provided. I feel like this has already been a great opportunity to participate in real library work–not just busy work, and it’s exciting to be able to apply what I’ve learned about in a real-world setting.