I did a previous “day in the life of an academic librarian” post a couple of years ago, when I was working in my previous job and college. That day was a particularly heavy teaching day, so you got a glimpse of the kind of teaching that librarians do.
Today’s “day in the life” post is one of my current job, which focuses heavily on supporting my fellow faculty find and use open educational resources (an educational movement to help bring down student costs by using or creating free and high-quality texts and resources instead of expensive textbooks). But I still get to do all the regular and varied things an academic librarian does — teaching and answering questions on our reference desk and purchasing materials for our library collections — so it’s the best of both worlds! Also in my current job, I have to do lots more outreach and presentations. Every day is like juggling about ten different plates, but it’s a very fulfilling job.
Let’s get started!
5:45 a.m. First alarm goes off, snooze, snooze, snooze.
6:00 a.m. Second alarm goes off at 6:00, snooze, snooze, snooze. (I’m not a morning person.)
6:15 a.m. Finally drag myself out of bed, wash face, put on moisturizer in our half-bath upstairs. Save time by putting on outfit I had set out the night before. I had also set out the night before my corresponding undergarments — socks, underwear, tights, etc. — in a (repurposed shoe) bag on my dresser.
6:30 a.m. Go downstairs to pour myself a cup of coffee. Kiss Sam goodbye, before he drives off to start his daily teaching schedule on two different campuses. In our main bathroom downstairs, put on sunscreen, fill in eyebrows, do rest of makeup, decide on which lipstick to put on. Put lipstick in my little lipstick case to take to work, to reapply after lunch in time for a big presentation I have that afternoon.
7:00 a.m. Feed cats and do style blog linkups while cats are eating.
7:15 a.m. Put on coat, gloves, hat, and make sure everything’s in my tote bag, including my keys, cell phone, chapstick, bus pass, and a book to read.
7:20 a.m. Head out of the house to grab the bus to work. Read my book on the bus.
8:30 a.m. Arrive at work and walk across campus. Greet colleagues and chat on the way to my office in the library.
8:45 a.m. Check Outlook schedule for the rest of the day. If it’s not on my Outlook calendar, it doesn’t exist! Start on tasks for the morning:
- library instruction prep for a class later that week
- backup for Reference Desk questions
- chatting with a colleague from our assessment department who drops by my office to catch up
- emails emails emails
- researching survey instruments for college counseling needs assessment and emailing those to our counseling faculty before their planned department retreat the next day
- updating my tenure e-portfolio to include recent presentations and newsletter write-ups
- emailing tenure committee members about upcoming observation opportunities
12:30 p.m. Lunch. Read book after eating lunch.
1:30 p.m. Brush teeth after lunch and touch up lipstick using magnetic mirror on the inside of my file cabinet.
1:40 p.m. Make copies of handouts for my presentation. Gather up handouts and notes.
2:10 p.m. Head out to first meeting of the afternoon, a monthly faculty forum. I’m first on the agenda, and I’m there to share updates and statistics about OER efforts on campus. I arrive a bit early to set up the computer podium and projector in the room. Upon my arrival, a colleague compliments my outfit and starts clapping for me to go into “runway” mode. I oblige. Hah! 😉
2:35 p.m. Meeting begins. Start my presentation to my fellow faculty, distribute handouts. Answer a few questions. Good vibes all around. One of my tenure committee members also there to observe my presentation, which means one observation down for the term. So efficient! 🙂
3:30 p.m. Sneak in a bathroom break before the second meeting, our monthly Instructional Council meeting. I’m there to distribute handouts while my OER colleague presents to the Council and, if needed, to help answer any questions.
4:30 p.m. Second and final meeting ends. Sam texts me that he’s there to pick me up. Text him back that I’ll be a few minutes because I need to answer a couple of emails that came in while I was out at meetings. See a new email, sent after the faculty forum meeting, inviting me to a faculty chairs meeting to share more info about OER. Print out a couple of documents to work on the next day while I’m working a half-day from home. Gather up my stuff to head home.
5:15 p.m. Arrive home. Pause on way into house to take recycles out for trash pickup the next morning.
5:30 p.m. Cook dinner with Sam; we get weekly meals from Blue Apron. Tonight’s menu is a flatbread pizza. Yum!
7:00 p.m. Sam feeds cats dinner while I head upstairs to unwind and and catch up on blog and social media stuff. Jot down notes about my day for this post. 😉
7:30 p.m. Sam brings me (decaf) tea and a couple of chocolates for dessert.
10 p.m. Make sure alarm is set for next morning. Sleep!
Did you enjoy this additional peek into a “day in the life” of an academic librarian? Please leave a comment and share! 🙂