New Projects in Redesigned GSA Position
Since the Spring/Summer 2012 semester, I have been employed as a Graduate Student Assistant (GSA) in the Purdy/Kresge Library here at Wayne. Until recently, that has consisted mostly of providing reference services. Starting in the Fall 2013 semester, however, the GSA positions have been redesigned so that students who have been a GSA for several semesters spend the majority of their time working in an area of academic librarianship aside from reference. The area in which GSAs are placed depends on both preference and the availability of suitable projects, and I am very happy to have worked with Digital Publishing for the past semester.
My first major project was the digitization and processing of the Detroit Focus Quarterly (DFQ), a local visual arts publication that ran from the early ’80s to the late ’90s. The library had been given permission from Detroit Focus, the publishers of the item, to digitize and provide access to the publication online. Though a few institutions have DFQ in their collection, no digital copies exist; when the “front end” (i.e. the site through with resources can be accessed) for the library’s digital collections is complete, a larger project involving collaboration between Digital Publishing and Access Services, this online resource will be completely unique to Wayne State. This project allowed me to gain experience using ABBYY Recognition Server, Fedora Commons, and XML schema.
The bulk of my other responsibilities revolved around Wayne’s Institutional Repository (IR), which is set up using the BePress Digital Commons platform. The types of materials I worked with varied widely; I described and deposited a large volume of single articles, a few complete journal issues (Framework v48i2 & Marvels & Tales v27i2), a WSU promotional publication (New Science 2012), and the entire run of a journal (Clinical Sociology Review). Digital Commons is a popular platform for IRs, so I hope to use the knowledge I’ve gained through this project wherever I end up.