There is something to be said for working as a Library Assistant in the Circulation Department. You see; it places me in a unique position to talk to, and get to know the students that wander into the Library. ( I am also in a unique position because I attend classes with some of them.) So, I get to see them progress year to year. It’s cheer them on as they move up the ladder and step closer to graduating. I have the opportunity to learn their names, field questions and recommend combat tactics for that research paper coming up. As jobs go, I love every minute.
I watch as they enter the automatic doors every semester, excited and fresh and watch the transformation to tired and stressed by finals week. Each one looking forward to the between semester break. The next semester the cycle begins again like a wave cresting and breaking upon the shore. It is not just the transformation of the students from semester to semester, but watching them go from freshman to seniors is an amazing experience. I see the fresh faces of the freshman decked out in new clothes beginning the next chapter of their lives. I watch as the fashions of their freshman year transform to the comfort of jeans and t-shirts in their sophomore year. The Junior year see them begin to shed the comfort of the t shirt and jeans to jeans and dressier tops and finally as Seniors preparing to step from college to the working world of adulthood; they don slacks and business attire.
Working on the night shift or the weekend rotation, I see the single mothers that use the family room and the more studious that spend hours going over readings and taking copious notes. They make me want to be a better student and a better Library Assistant.
You could say that working in Circulation has all kinds of perks. None more gratifying than watching the students grow. Not just from year to year, but day to day. Listening to their tales of joy or horror about one class or another, or hearing the laughter in the cafeteria from new found friends. There is a sense of satisfaction knowing that this journey is one that will find them with new hopes, new dreams, and lifelong friends.
And me; well, I get to watch it all from my desk with view.