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Apr 18 / Matthew Fredericks

SLIS Alternative Spring Break at OCLC in Dublin, Ohio

By Shatha Baydoun, MLIS Student

From March 13 to March 17, I took part in OCLC’s Alternative Spring Break (ASB) program that was organized by Kimberly Schroeder (SLIS) and Nancy Lensenmayer (OCLC Program Director). Each intern was assigned a supervisor and mine was Karen Hinton. She is a wonderful person who was very nurturing and supportive. I was initially nervous but she made me feel right at home. This was also true for the other supervisors with whom we interacted with several times. I truly enjoyed the experience both at a professional level and a personal one. As an intern, I was given the responsibilities of a project manager. I reviewed the training and support documentation for an OCLC product known as World Record Manager. At the end of the week my fellow interns (Stephanie Marshall, Connie Harrison, Margie Wade) and I presented our respective findings to members of OCLC’s staff. It was a low-key affair during which we sampled delicious desserts from OCLC’s cafeteria and socialized with the staff. At the end of our presentations, each intern received a certificate of recognition.

At a personal level, it was wonderful to see and meet my SLIS colleagues. In fact, I am currently taking a class with one of the interns (Stephanie Marshall) without which I would never have met. Since this was a break, Nancy Lensenmayer was a great hostess that organized several tours including the OSU Thompson Library, the Columbus Metropolitan Library, and the OSU’s Book Depository which has around 3.2 million books. I should admit however my favorite was OCLC’s data depository where only a select few get to see and were the WorldCat’s data is stored. This really was a great opportunity and I encourage my SLIS colleagues to apply. Not only do you get the chance to network and meet people, you also get to expand your LIS knowledge beyond the realm of the classroom.”