A Day in the Life of an Acquisitions Graduate Assistant

la Trobe library
Pengo. “La Trobe University library, Bundoora campus.” Image. Wikimedia Commons. [Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.]
In the words of the Beatles’ song “A Day in the Life,” I “Woke up/fell out of bed/dragged a comb across my head.”  Then, it is across campus to the Main Library – where a stack of orders is waiting for me.

My coworkers and I get dragged in by a dozen Halloween-themed donuts.  I picked an orange and green one.  And I ate a banana in the hallway, disposing of the peel in the food waste bin (to keep the library free of pests).

Then, it’s back to sitting down with the orders.  30 Japanese books, 10 French books on music, 10 architectural books.  Always takes longer than expected.

An email from my boss, with information on the new ProjectMUSE and JSTOR patron-driven acquisition (PDA) project.  I looked at the overlap in publishers, and then the overlap in titles for those – so the library can ensure that no duplicate records get loaded into the OPAC (online public access catalog).  While at first I thought I’d be pulling lists from publisher websites for the overlapping titles, I’ve found that I can pretty easily compare by searching the overlapping titles in JSTOR and ProjectMUSE – at least for the small presses/publishers.  It goes faster than hunting through tens of pages of a publisher’s website.  I’ll have to see how it goes when I get to a big publisher like Oxford University Press.

Then, at 1, I high-tail it to lunch.  Afterwards, I try to fit in some housework before crossing campus again for my 3-hour long lecture class on Archives.  The evening calms down from there: I eat dinner, finish my housework, and work on whatever projects need doing.  If I have time, I might even sneak in an episode of my Chinese historical drama Empresses in the Palace (后宫·甄嬛传).

The life of an Acquisitions Graduate Assistant sure looks busy…and Mondays are a light day.


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