As you saw in my previous post, the students are back. Thus begins the week of “pimping” the library. The next week or so is devoted to tours, orientations, a library social, and just about anything else you can think of to introduce the library to students and entice them back to use our resources and services. These activities are for freshmen as well as returning students, transfers, new graduate students and even new professors.
Today was the freshmen orientation tours. In small groups they get a tour of campus given by an upperclassman, which includes a stop in the library. This stop is at most 15 minutes. People (including me – go back room tech services folk!!) volunteered to give a little spiel about the library and its services. We were instructed to highlight certain things, including our incredible reference librarians and the library social event, and to do it all in about five minutes.
That’s not a lot of time to wax poetic about our services and staff. Not a lot of time at all.
Groups came in in waves. The volunteers led groups away from the lobby-entrance and gave their talks. The groups then left us to wander to another part of the library and we went back for another group. Being able to project your voice was key. It got rather loud with 8 librarians pimping the library all at once in a not-so-big area.
And bonus points if you got your group to laugh. Usually telling them to come to the library social so they could dance with the librarians did it.
Tell me, why is that so funny?? When are librarians going to shake the image that we are all stodgy and stiff and shushing people all the time? I mean, really, librarians are a bunch of crazy people who generally love what they do. Why else would we choose to do what we do for the salaries we get paid? And we’re fun! Trust me. I swear. We’re a fun bunch. Really.
Ironically, I did have one student comment on the number of holes I have in my ears (3 on one side, 4 on the other). It seemed to earn me an extra measure of respect from him. Maybe I should have worn a shirt that showed my tattoos (ok, maybe showed just one)…I wonder what kind of response that would have evoked!