A Day in the Life of a Systems Librarian

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…”

Back in 2015, I told you about A Day in the Life of an Acquisitions Graduate Assistant.  If you have been following this blog, you know that I am no longer an acquisitions graduate assistant.  I graduated from library school and started my first professional job as a systems librarian in July of 2016.  Well, now that I’ve been in my current position more than a year, I thought it was time for a description of what a day in the life of a systems librarian looks like.

server room
Server room at Royal Institute of Technology Parallel Computer Center. John Frederiksson, CC By-SA 3.0. Wikimedia Commons.

So, after waking up, falling out of bed, and brushing my hair, I either walk or drive to work.  And then it’s checking emails from the coworkers who get to work earlier than I do.  On Fridays, I run server updates first thing – before any library instruction sessions start.  That includes snapshotting them, running the updates, and then rebooting them.

After that, I have at least one meeting with one of my direct reports.  I have plenty of days where I am inundated with meetings.  Today, though, I was able to focus most of my morning on crafting an information literacy session on robotics.  Sometimes developing lesson plans are quick; other times they are slow.  The robotics one ended up going slowly because I found myself fascinated by the literature surrounding robots, androids, and cyborgs.

Then, I go to lunch with other faculty – a program designed by our dean of faculty to help build community and cooperation.  I like the free food and hanging with my colleagues outside of the library.

After lunch, I have another meeting with another direct report.  And then an hour to do data cleanup.  At 3, there’s a meeting with the library director.  By 4, I’m slowing down with scholarly publication, scholarly reading, more data cleanup, or finishing up various communications to my coworkers.

At 5, I try to “skip town” (leave work) and go take care of my horse and home.


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