controlaccess: Relevant Subjects in Archives and Related Fields 2018-11-11

SAA News

Call for Student Paper and Poster Proposals: 2019 Joint Annual Meeting

Call for Volunteers: New Committee on Research, Data, and Assessment

Apply for an SAA Foundation Grant

SAA Council Affirms Strategic Goals, Creates Research Committee

 

Other Professional Happenings

Society of American Archivists Oral History Interviews Project, UWM Libraries

Archives and Archivists in the News

A Dallas artist turned archival 35mm films from SMU’s vault into an unlikely cinematic installation

‘I’m Not Just Looking Back… I’m Looking Ahead’: New Coca-Cola Archivist Justine Fletcher Says Company’s Rich History Informs Its Future

ASU Library archivists make marginalized history accessible to all

Writer Haruki Murakami Plans Archive at Japanese University

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Transitions: Anna Tunnicliff

This post is part of our “Transitions” Series, which highlights the experiences of recent graduates and early-career archivists. If you are an early-career archivist (0-5 years in the field) who would like to participate in this series, please contact us.

FaceGuest author: Anna Tunnicliff
Processing Librarian
The Iowa Women’s Archives

A week after leaving my position as a graduate assistant at the Iowa Women’s Archives, I started the newly created position of Processing Librarian at… the Iowa Women’s Archives. The place and the supervisors were the same, but the job meant new tasks, new responsibilities, and becoming a part of the larger University of Iowa Libraries system. I’ve learned that moving into a new role is no easy transition no matter how familiar you are with the institution. In this short post, I want to share the unexpected, the challenges, and the excitement that came with filling a brand new job in a familiar place.

For three years as a graduate student at the University of Iowa, I studied library and information sciences and book studies while gaining practical experience at the Iowa Women’s Archives. I processed collections, staffed events, and assisted researchers, learning more and more about women’s history as I went. An opportunity to stay was something I dreamed about. As I read through the job description, I imagined myself processing all the time. Having more time to process would be all right, I thought. As a student assistant, I noticed that students completed a lot of processing with staff supervision but, over a year or two they often didn’t have the time or gain the experience necessary to tackle collections of more than a few linear feet. With forty hours per week, I imagined digging into some of the big, unprocessed collections that I longed for researchers to use. At the same time, I’m not an introvert. What if processing all the time was just too quiet? I worried that I’d miss chances to interact with researchers and students. However, since no one had held the job before, I had no example for how the description of the job would match the practical realities. Despite my years at the Iowa Women’s Archives, I entered my new position with the same uncertainty many people feel about their first professional job.

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controlaccess: Relevant Subjects in Archives and Related Fields 2018-11-04

SAA News

Call for Student Paper and Poster Proposals: 2019 Joint Annual Meeting

NARA Corrects Records Schedule, Extends Comment Period on Dept. of Interior Records

Archives and Archivists in the News

U.S. archivists release Watergate report that could be a possible ‘road map’ for Robert Mueller on Trump

Archival Ghosts: Spooky Stories from “A Finding Aid to My Soul”

How an Astonishing Holocaust Diary Resurfaced in America

ASU helps 10,000+ archives of LGBT+ history go digital

Archives Month: Agents of the future

US Grants Copyright Exception to Archive Abandoned Online Games

Punk Lovers, There’s an Exhibition Opening at Central Library for You

Year in the Life: Rachel Fellman, part 8

I interviewed, moved, and switched jobs this month — from assistant archivist at a small niche museum to project archivist at a historical society. For 99% of my tenure at the museum, I reported to an empty position, and I remember talking in my historical society interview about the rookie mistakes I had to push through during this time as a lone arranger. On the plus side, I got them done quickly, on a kind of a professional fast-forward. On the minus side, they happened, and in the absence of a supervisor I had to solve the resulting problems myself.

Since my life’s still in transition, this will be a short Year in the Life entry, but I wanted to think about what those errors really were, and how they’ve informed the archivist I’m becoming. Here, then, are My Rookie Mistakes:

  1. Trying to do everything at once. My mentor — who knows my personality well — warned me about this when I left my student job, but in the end I could only learn it from experience. High standards are a virtue, and so is recognizing that your archives’ daily work still needs to get done regardless of staffing level, but I guarantee that the work will not get done, much less to a high standard, if you don’t think out your moves before you make them. Take a breath, survey that collection, research that potential shelving change, test out that new type of box, and don’t promise that researcher anything. Future You will thank you.
  2. Not listening. You may be the only archivist on a campus, but you’re not the only archival stakeholder. At first, I thought I was listening to other employees’ perspectives and arguments, but it took me a few months to recognize that I had to make a conscious effort to cede much more of the conversation. Being a sincere listener will change how you look at the world and how co-workers look at you, and I don’t know which is more important for getting things done.
  3. Not picking my battles. (See also: the part about listening.) Don’t make your moonshot your first rocket launch, or your tenth.
  4. Not trusting myself as an archival expert! Work in archives for six months and you’ll know more about archives than 99% of people. Heck, work in archives for three months and you’ll know more than 90% of people. If you’re a lone arranger, you understand your job far better than your co-workers do, and if you work as part of a team, you’re one of a very small club. I urge you to embrace that. If you constantly feel like you have something to prove, you’ll make all the mistakes above: time-crunching, not listening, not thinking about what you really need to do next. Impostor syndrome is the root of all evil.

There are also many things about the past year that I’m proud of — among them are continuing to learn, making sure I’ve credited co-workers properly, and making sure that my tally of favors stays even. We all make different rookie mistakes and have different starting strengths, depending largely on our personalities and pasts, and I think we should also try to remember that there are all kinds of things that we instinctively did right, even in our first day on the job.

Come join us!

The Students and New Archives Professionals (SNAP) Section is seeking nominations for the appointed ex-officio positions of  New Professionals Blog Editor, Student Blog Editor, Senior Social Media Coordinator, Junior Social Media Coordinator, and Student Chapter Coordinator (see descriptions below). Ex-officio positions are open to all SNAP members.

The term for each office is one year, beginning on December 1, 2018 and ending on December 1, 2019. A second year may optionally be considered after the end of the first year. If you wish to nominate yourself or someone else, please complete the following form. All nominations are due by 11:59 PM (PST) on Sunday, November 18, 2018. If you are nominated by someone else, you will have an opportunity before the ballot goes live to write your own candidate statement.

To apply please complete this form: https://goo.gl/forms/wG6N3039ZQgjlyha2

SAA APPOINTMENTS TIMELINE

The SNAP Section steering committee will review all nominations received by 11:59 PM (PST) on Sunday, November 18, 2018. All candidates will be notified of appointment decisions by or before Saturday, December 1, 2018. Results will be announced on the SNAP listserv, Twitter feed, Facebook page, and blog in late November.

POSITION DESCRIPTIONS

Student Blog Editor (2 year optional appointment; rotating position)

The Student Blog Editor works closely with the New Professional Blog Editor and the Lead Blog Coordinator to jointly solicit, schedule, format, and post content for the SNAP audience. The Student Blog Editor also works with the Social Media Coordinators to publicize blog content on Twitter and Facebook. Editors will have their eyes and ears open for potential stories, and will solicit contributions in the form of written posts, video, infographics, audio, etc. that could benefit the SNAP community. The Student Blog Editor will need to know or be willing to learn WordPress, have solid email skills to communicate with contributors, and feel comfortable working with an online editorial calendar. The Student Professionals Blog Editor, or New Professionals Blog Editor, has the option to rotate into the blog coordinator position after one year. The position requires a minimum of 2 hours a week.

New Professionals Blog Editor (2 year optional appointment; rotating position)

The New Professionals Blog Editor works closely with the Student Blog Editor and the Lead Blog Coordinator to jointly solicit, schedule, format, and post content for the SNAP audience. The New Professionals Blog Editor also works with the Social Media Coordinators to publicize blog content on Twitter and Facebook. Editors will have their eyes and ears open for potential stories, and will solicit contributions in the form of written posts, video, infographics, audio, etc. that could benefit the SNAP community. The New Professionals Blog Editor will need to know or be willing to learn WordPress, have solid email skills to communicate with contributors, and feel comfortable working with an online editorial calendar. The New Professionals Blog Editor, or Student Professionals Blog Editor, has the option to rotate into the blog coordinator position after one year.  The position requires a minimum of 2 hours a week.

Senior Social Media Coordinator (1 year appointment)

The incoming senior social media coordinator will maintain SNAP Twitter and Facebook accounts, run #snaprt Twitter chats (2 chats a month on the fives), coordinate SNAP live-tweeting at SAA and other professional organization meetings, promote blog posts, and investigate and establish additional social media presences as appropriate with the help of the junior social media coordinator. The position requires a minimum of 10 hours a week.

Junior Social Media Coordinator (2 year optional appointment; rotating position)

The incoming junior social media coordinator will help the incumbent senior social media coordinator to maintain SNAP Twitter and Facebook accounts, run #snaprt Twitter chats (2 chats a month on the fives), coordinate SNAP live-tweeting at SAA and other professional organization meetings, promoting blog posts, and investigate and establish additional social media presences as appropriate. The junior social media coordinator has the option to rotate into the senior social media coordinator after one year. The position requires a minimum of 10 hours a week.

Student Chapter Coordinator (1 year position)

The Student Chapter Coordinator will serve as a liaison between SAA student chapters and SNAP. This position will be responsible for distributing information about SNAP and SNAP-lead initiatives to student chapters and facilitating frequent communication between SNAP and the student chapters. The position requires a minimum of 1 hour a week.

controlaccess: Relevant Subjects in Archives and Related Fields 2018-10-28

SAA News

Accomplishing More Together: Volunteer to Serve on an SAA Appointed Group

NARA Corrects Records Schedule, Extends Comment Period on Dept. of Interior Records

 

Archives and Archivists in the News

Who was he? Searching for Washington’s mystery photographer by Feliks Banel. I forget the name of the archival theorist who argued that an image without metadata contains no information and should not be collected, but the idea has haunted me a little ever since. This is a strong argument against it — although the deck’s a bit stacked, since the informational value of these images lies in their portrayal of a time and place (which we do know) rather than the subjects’ identities (which we don’t).

Papers of President Theodore Roosevelt Now Online by the staff of the Library of Congress. Interestingly, many of the materials were microfilmed already; the digitization was largely done from the microfilm.

 

 

Year in the Life: Kara Flynn, part 10

In this month’s Year in the Life, pop-up exhibits give outreach a boost!

Happy Archives Month, all! October is a notoriously busy month around here, as on topPicture1 of Archives Month, October is also a strangely popular month for regional conferences. Since I’ll be away towards the end of the month, I ended up planning our Archives Month event this year right at the beginning of the month, so I figured I might as well recap it.

Hosting archival outreach events is one of the aspects of my job that I enjoy the most. I love the idea of making archives a bit more “fun” for the average person, and I appreciate the creative outlet that conceptualizing, planning, and hosting an outreach event affords. Last year, I centered our Archives Month outreach event around Augusta’s food history. In conjunction with a class on the Anthropology of Food, I curated an exhibit showcasing food history (cook books, recipes, food advertisements from the collection, and more), and then hosted an exhibit opening event featuring presentations by a history and an anthropology professor who teach classes on food history and culture, and by students in the Anthropology of Food course, who had been working on papers comparing trends in cookbooks from different decades. I also recruited fellow library staff to prepare dishes from our historic cookbooks, which served as the refreshments for the event. While the event last year was quite successful, it was also rather all-consuming to plan, organize, and carry out. So this academic year, I’m trying to focus my outreach energies into hosting multiple, smaller scale events.

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