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From Theory to Practice: A Student Perspective on Working at BC ELN and eHLbc
Hello! My name is Laura Moberg and I currently work as a Student Librarian with BC ELN and the Electronic Health Library of BC (eHLbc) while I complete my Master of Archival Studies and Master of Library and Information Studies at the UBC School of Information. I started in May 2022 for an 8-month, part-time position through the UBC iSchool Co-op Program and have been fortunate to stay on with the consortium following my co-op term. By working at BC ELN and eHLbc I’ve had opportunities to gain rich and varied work experience, practically apply my MAS/MLIS course learnings, and strengthen my future career plans.
As a Student Librarian, I support key consortial services and operations:
- I lead renewals of consortially-licensed electronic information resources
- AskAway provincial chat reference service
- I provide virtual reference service to students from post-secondary libraries across the province
- BC ELN-BCHDP Support Service
- I support small sites with their digitization project planning and BC History Digitization Program (BCHDP) grant applications
- Arca collaborative digital repository
- I validate and process metadata for ingest and assist with the management of digital collections
- Illume provincial interlibrary loan service
- I staff the Illume Support Centre and assist the brokering of interlibrary loan requests for BC Reading Centres
- I develop targeted communications, including an issue of eHLbc’s Vital Signs newsletter and a “ConsortiaManager Tip of the Month” email series
BC ELN and eHLbc offer collaborative and supportive environments where I’ve been able to explore my professional interests, strengthen my time management and multitasking skills, and hone my interpersonal and communications skills. I’ve also gained technical experience, including with the ConsortiaManager licensing workflow tool, LibraryH3lp chat reference software, Illume (SHAREit) ILL software, Constant Contact email marketing platform, and Islandora digital repository system.
My time at BC ELN and eHLbc has impacted my future career plans by reinforcing my interest in academic librarianship and digital projects or collections work. I’ve been introduced to the wide range of career options in this field and I’ve been able to gain experience in several areas. The knowledge and skills I’ve developed as a Student Librarian, in combination with my relevant academic studies, will be invaluable as I pursue my professional goals in post-secondary libraries.
A co-op position with BC ELN and eHLbc offers iSchool students a unique perspective on the BC post-secondary library landscape. I would highly recommend this position to students interested in gaining experience with province-wide library systems and shared services while working in a collaborative, consortial environment.