in General, Libraries/Info Sci

New librarian tip #1: Do someone else’s homework

As a new librarian, I thought it might be interesting to share things that are helping me to get acclimated to the working world. This is the first in an occasional series.

Today I received a copy of a “scavenger hunt” assignment that students from a business class must complete. I had a couple of open hours this afternoon, and took a crack at the list.

Hoo boy was that an undertaking. While I don’t have the exact questions in front of me as I type, they were along the somewhat obscure lines of “What percentage of people who eat Cheerios are under 17?”. Lots of market research, demographics and company profile info. I finished off my MLIS with a business resources class, but this was a whole new level!

I didn’t get to answer every question exactly, but I now at least have an idea of where to look for the answers. When a student comes in with questions about this assignment, I’m better prepared to assist.

And that was the objective I set out to accomplish. But along the way I picked up a couple of unexpected bonuses: Firstly, I’m much better acquainted with our business reference collection in general. Secondly, I struck up a conversation in the stacks with a student who was doing the assignment himself. We were competing for the same book, actually. The whole task also sparked some good conversations with my co-workers

In sum, it was a great integrating experience. I’m hoping to pick up some similar worksheets from our other subject specialists.