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Meet the student employees of the library

By Charlotte Aaron

Section: Features

September 29, 2017

Hannah Moser ’18- Information and Borrowing Assistant

Hannah Moser ’18 is an Information and Borrowing Assistant at the library. On any typical work day, she finds herself checking in items, troubleshooting people’s problems and shelving in the off hours—“a weird hobby,” as she described it. “It’s very relaxing. You’re just organizing things and putting things where they belong,” she said. What job involves all of these activities? A job at the front desk of the library.

“It’s fun being at the front desk because you see people you know, you get to help them…and I think I recognize more people around campus now, which is nice,” said Moser about her job working at the library’s Information and Borrowing Desk.

While at the beginning of the semester, giving students directions to the bathroom and Starbucks made up the majority of her time, now she mainly checks out books and chargers in between answering questions about the printer, the hardest part of her job.

“Sometimes it’s our software and sometimes it’s user error,” she said. The challenge is figuring out the situation and then “trying to help everybody get their assignments printed when they need them,” Moser said

Yet even in the face of the most challenging printer questions, Moser can count on a fun work environment. “All the adult librarians are very friendly and nice,” she said. “Sometimes [they] bring us yummy treats that they’ve made at home, and that’s probably my favorite part.” For example, Moser noted “the delicious apple challah” brought into work earlier in the week by one of the librarians.

When not working in the library, Moser serves as a University Departmental Representative (UDR) for the computer science major and is president of both J Street U and Girls Who Code. 

Jacob Kleinberg ’18 – Technical Support Specialist and James Conlon B.A. ’16, M.A. ’18 – Student Manager

The Getz Media Lab is not just a paycheck for its student employees, but rather, is a place to learn, teach and create. Located on the third floor of the Goldfarb library, it houses high-end camera, video and lighting technology, as well as top-notch technical support from its passionate student workers.

“Part of what we do is rent out equipment,” said Jacob Kleinberg ’18, but the work he and his co-worker James Conlon ’16 M.A. ’18 are most passionate about is teaching Brandeis community members how to use the equipment and software.

“Mark [Dellelo, the lab manager] describes our goal in this lab as a ‘teaching lab,’ so we really want to give people the tools and the knowledge they need to start a project and then kind of be able to work on it on their own,” explained Kleinberg.

Over the course of his time working at Getz, Kleinberg has found it most challenging saying no to students who prefer that Kleinberg do the work for them, rather than learn how to do it themselves. “We are here to work with people, but we want to teach them so that they become independent and able to use this stuff on their own,” he said.

It’s also important to Getz employees that they are continually learning and improving their own skills as well. “I love working here because it’s the only job I’ve had where it’s really about learning and improving. It’s not enough to know what you know,” said Kleinberg.

When not renting out equipment or working with students, Kleinberg, Conlon and other Getz student employees keep busy by working on their own projects in the lab. “We want to identify things that we don’t know in order to learn them,” said Kleinberg, who explained the best way to do this is to use the equipment and programs on the computers.

Kleinberg and Conlon both began working at Getz as a way to engage with their interests in video technology and development. “I’m really passionate about film,” said Conlon. “It’s something I did not pursue academically, but I still care a lot about. This job gave me that opportunity to work on my own craft,” Conlon continued.

Kleinberg applied for the position after taking a photojournalism course and learning about the opportunities that existed in the Lab. With a long-standing interest in filmmaking, he was excited to join the community of Getz student employees. “People that work here really like the job and are really excited about this. Everyone really has a different interest, so some people are into really into film, others photography,” said Kleinberg.

One way in which the students explore their passions is by working together on what Conlon described as “creative projects.” For example, last year the group produced a music video filmed outside the Rose Art Museum to an original song by an indie band visiting campus.

Kleinberg and Conlon both encourage students to come down to the Getz Lab and explore the resources available to them. “Sometimes people come down here and are surprised and say ‘oh, I never know you had all this,’” said Kleinberg. “We have really high-end cameras and audio and lighting equipment, so people should come down and check us out!

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