Student Cross-Training within the User Services Department of Musselman Library, Gettysburg College
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Supervisors within the User Services Department at Musselman library have collaborated to assess student worker tasks. Determining like tasks across units has informed the development and ongoing refinement of cross-training for student colleagues. Musselman Library's User Services dept. has encountered increasing building usage/changes with how students are interacting with library resources, flat budgets, staffing reorganizations, etc. To meet the needs of library patrons, the decision was made to implement more cross-training among US student workers to utilize them more efficiently/allow them to grow/etc. US has the largest student workforce in the library, so there were challenges in how to implement a cross-training platform among 36 students. To best determine how to serve both our library patrons, and also commit to providing practical training for student workers, several new programs/processes/etc were developed. An evaluation system was developed to assess student progress, as well as get feedback from students regarding areas they wished to grow. Through programmatic events, students learned more about different departments in the library, developed technology skills, visited IT to meet other student workers, etc. Student supervisors were charged with working with students to develop cross-departmental competencies and expose them to the variety of jobs in a modern academic library. As we continue to evaluate the student workers and learn from their feedback, we hope to implement additional, targeted training in the future (Emergency Preparedness, technology, library organization and work flow, etc.) The Musselman Library User Services Department consists of: Circulation and Stacks, Reserves, and Interlibrary Loan.