Highlights of the Library Internship Program
The Stanford Library interns continue to thrive as they gain more insight about the Stanford Libraries, its numerous resources, the richness of its staff and friends, and the surroundings that make Stanford such an amazing place at which to learn, work and play.
Highlights of the past couple of weeks include lunchtime sessions with some of Stanford’s (former and present) faculty and staff and tours of a couple of campus laboratories. The interns attended sessions with Dr. Judith Ned, Executive Director of the Stanford Medial Youth Science Program; Stanford’s former Vice Provost for campus relations, Judge LaDoris Cordell; and Stanford’s former Dean of Freshmen, “Dean Julie” Lythcott-Haims. These professionals met and spoke with the student interns, focusing their sessions on social skills training, in which the interns took part in activities centered on self-awareness, communication skills, community awareness, and overall expectations of college life. The interns also toured the Libraries’ Robot Book Scanning lab and Stanford’s Product Realization Labs.
In addition to the social aspect of the program, the interns are actually working very hard and have proven to be invaluable assets to their departments. A couple of supervisors have blogged about their experiences working with their intern. Tiffany Tsui, Academic Computing Services, Service Desk Manager, wrote a blog about her intern, Mia Kirkendoll. Tiffany wrote, “I've been extremely lucky to work with Mia... The internship experience has been one that has not only given me an intern, but it has given me an opportunity to see Stanford brand-new again with a fresh set of eyes and perspective. And for that, I'm quite grateful that Mia and I were able to go through this together.” Mia’s responsibilities have included operating the large-format poser printing service, running the equipment check out service, and interacting with various types of patrons on various issues at the Meyer Tech Desk, just to name a few.
Such sentiments were also shared by SUL Tech Support employees Deni Wicklund and Dean Steede. Deni and Dean supervise Heyab Chocol and Samantha Castañeda. These interns have been helping update the physical inventory and working with the Expert Partners in each of the departments and units to capture information about all the staff computers, monitors and printers in each area. They have been to all of the libraries in SUL except for the off-campus ones (so far). Heyab has also taken on an additional responsibility: picking up old machines for disposition and updating their inventories, as well as the occasional delivery of items to Library departments. Doing this kind of work has given them access to staff and resources in all the libraries. Deni has shared how much she’s enjoyed working with both Samantha and Heyab, noting how Samantha is so smart and quick to pick up anything explained to her and how Heyab, although the youngest of the group of interns, is so mature and intelligent, and how his quick smile makes him a joy to work with.
Deni not only finds great value in the student interns working with her, but also acknowledges in a recent SUL News article, Library Intern Program showcases SUL's staff how the intern program has brought to light many other members of our SUL staff.
Of final note is a hidden jewel in the intern program. The program’s co-coordinator, Veronica Rubalcava, is a second-year college student at UC San Diego and a former Library summer employee. (She worked for Special Collections last summer.) Her enthusiasm and great personality brought her back to the Libraries, where she’s the perfect fit for her job working with the interns. Being in the throes of college life herself, this position allows her to be an added resource for the student interns while the program itself provides her with resources that she can use in her college career – truly a win-win situation.
Though the Stanford Library Internship Program is not the first (and will not be the last) internship program at Stanford, its success is without precedent for us, and it does set a high bar for the future. As our interns launch into their bright futures, we'll reflect on how their presence has graced our lives in SUL this summer.