Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students

Klaire Chandler

(I’m kind of mid-sentence in this picture, but my friend took it on real film and developed it for me, so it’s sort of special.)

Hi, I’m Klaire Chandler! I’m currently in my third semester here at Simmons. I’m in the Archives Management and History dual program.

I’m from a very small town in Maine close to Acadia National Park. I grew up riding horses through the woods and collecting various “historical artifacts” (mostly just bits of trash) that I kept in my own little “personal museum,” (aka a cabinet in my room). The things I didn’t find in the woods, I found while combing through yard sales and flea markets with my dad. My prize possession was a WWI address book I found in an estate sale.

Before coming to Simmons, I attended Salem State University where I majored in English and minored in Art History. After I finished my undergrad I moved to Seoul, South Korea to teach English for a year. Traveling to the other side of the world in the middle of a pandemic was a little bit terrifying, but the people I met (and the food I got to eat) made it worth it.

So far, my experience at Simmons has been great. Last semester I took LIS 438 and completed my field experience at the Center for the History of Medicine at Harvard Medical School’s Countway Library. I’ve always loved hands-on learning and getting to work with an actual archival collection was wonderful. This semester I’m taking my first history semester. The course is focused on the American Civil War, and so far it’s been really interesting to explore the war from a variety of different perspectives.

Outside of school, I love to spend time with my Scottish Fold cat, Louie, play DnD with my friends, and attend art shows. I also love to read primarily historical non-fiction or science fiction. I’m currently reading, “A Declaration of the Rights of Magicians” by H.G. Perry. I’m also a reference assistant at the Beatley Library so if you see me there feel free to say “hi!”

Entries by Klaire Chandler

An Unexpected Archive of the Universe

I hope everyone is having a great Semester so far! Mine has been super busy since I started a new job as a Curatorial Assistant at the Harvard Plate Stacks Collection last fall. The Plate Stacks Collection is stored at the Harvard and Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and includes over 550,000 glass plate negatives and spectral images of the stars, which represent the first full image of the visible Universe. 146 women astronomical computers helped to create, store, and analyze this collection over about a century and many of them, such as Henrietta Leavitt and Annie Jump Cannon, have become famous for their groundbreaking discoveries. Before starting the archives program, I would have never imagined working at an archive of this type. However, archives come in an amazing range of shapes and sizes. My field placement involved an archive full of historical medical records, equipment, and human remains. My first archives job includes hundreds of thousands of glass plate negatives representing the entire visible universe. Beyond my work experiences, I have learned of thousands of…

Fighting the Mid-Semester Blues with a Little Green

This Friday is St. Patrick’s Day, a big holiday here in Boston. I’ve lived my whole life in New England, so it’s always been an interesting day for me, but this year I have met a few out-of-town friends through Simmons who are excited about their first St. Patty’s. On the one hand, I’ve got archival subject headings to identify and a Civil War literature review to write, but on the other, I’ve got corn beef hash and brown bread to eat.  School’s important and staying on top of assignments and readings is essential. However, I just want to encourage my fellow SLIS students to remember to enjoy the now. I know that sounds a little silly, but we only have so long here at Simmons and many of us will leave this school and this city within a few years. Beyond that, I think it’s good to take a step back and plan some time for yourself. This time of year a lot of us fall into a sort of slump. I’ve seen a…