Hello fellow library lovers!
My name is Harmeen and I am studying to become a library and information technician at Seneca College. As a part of my program, I recently completed a three-week field placement at Gore Meadows library. What is a library technician you may ask? Library techs are staff that help with circulation services, reference services and run library programming. We are not quite librarians but do much of the same tasks. We are to librarians what dental hygienists are to dentist.
I have always wanted to work in a public or school library and was really excited to find out that I would be doing my first field placement at Gore Meadows. Although I was only there for 3 weeks, I learned so much! Anita Khurana, who is the branch’s information services librarian, was my supervisor and I couldn’t have asked for a better one! She made sure that I experienced every aspect of the library and shadowed every library program that I could in the short time I was there.
It is truly a neat experience seeing what you are learning in a classroom translated into real life. I learned just how much work goes into running day-to-day library operations. From a customer’s standpoint, we often don’t know what goes on behind the scenes of a library. But I can now tell you from experience that libraries are not always the quiet reading coves of popular belief, oh no!
Take the library floor for example. Have you ever wondered how that almost magical “place request” button on the online library catalogue works? No magic but a lot of staff involvement. One you place a request for an item that is not available at your local branch the branch that does have the item is notified. Circulation staff then hunt down the item in question, and process it and ship it out to the requesting library. Once the item arrives at the requesting library, it is again processed by staff, at which point a notification will be sent to the customer for pick up.
One of my favourite things about working at Gore Meadows (other than the amazing staff and customers!) was being able to help run all the programs offered by the Brampton Library. Prior to my placement, I was not aware of the variety of programs offered at the library. From programs like story time for toddlers, to computer training for seniors, Brampton library offers it all. And I was lucky enough to sit in on a quite a few of them. It was such a great experience being able to interact with library customers who genuinely love coming to the library and are benefiting from the programs offered. Thank you Gore Meadows for making my work placement such a wonderful one!
– Harmen S