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Library Reference Internship

The Internship

The '15-'16 interns and librarians at the 2015 Minnesota Library Association Conference in St. Paul. Left to Right: Matt Bailey (Librarian), Carrie Hanson '16, Matt Thibodeau '18, Jenny Nguyen '17 and Jonah Hudson-Erdman '18.

Who we are
We're the library reference interns, a group of students paid to work, and learn, in the Reference and Instruction Department of Gould Library. This is our job on campus, but it's different from a lot of other jobs. In addition to doing work for the Reference Department, there's also a focus on teaching us about what being a librarian and professional is like.

What we do
We help the Reference Librarians with their projects and also work on projects of our own. Sometimes these projects are our own self-directed individual projects, other times we work as a group and/or with other departments in the Libe. You can see some examples of the work that we've done on the "What We Do" page of this guide. We also sit on the reference desk for two hours a week. While there, we're responsible for answering any kind of question we're asked, in-person or via online chat. The questions vary from helping people find books or bathrooms, to helping seniors find esoteric resources for their comps. This internship also includes a personal and professional education portion. We read about and discuss contemporary library issues and attend library conferences.

Testimonials

"The Library Reference Internship has given me a clear idea of how libraries work, but also a really good functional understanding of how we use and store information in the 21st century. Along the way, I've honed my skills using library resources, and become aware of libraries as a future career path. Also. it's fun."

- Jonah Hudson-Erdman '18

"I think one of the best choices I ever made at Carleton is applying for the internship. Beyond working with fabulous people- including librarians, faculty, and students- I gained various skills that are transferrable to numerous things I do while at Carleton and outside of Carleton including doing research, interacting with people, and thinking more critically. The position provided an area to learn about hot topics in the field and distinct things about our library through discussions and conferences. Also, did you know the coolest people are in libraries?"

- Jenny Nguyen '17

"Being an intern at the Libe is probably one of the best parts of my time at Carleton. It gave me the opportunity to explore my professional interests, and helped me realize what direction I wanted to take after leaving Carleton. Sitting on the reference desk, I got to see and help with the variety of research that Carls do. With my individual projects, I had the chance to provide information and resources for the Libe, while getting to be creative and collaborate with the other interns and librarians. We also had opportunities for networking at library conferences and field trips to other really amazing libraries in the Cities."

- Carrie Hanson '16