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

SLIS

Course Registration Is Upon Us!

In the midst of the last few weeks of the semester is another crucial time: course registration for summer and fall. I’ve decided to take one summer course this year, LIS 488, in order to wrap up the general degree requirements so I can take an elective course in the fall. Since it’s my second semester I have to take LIS 438: Intro to Archival Theory & Practice as well as HIST 597: Historical Methods in order to complete general requirements for my Archives Concentration and my MA degree. That leaves me with one course I can choose to register with what I want. Right now I haven’t decided if I’ll take LIS 446: Art Documentation or LIS 532Q: Museum Studies. That’s always the hard part: what do you choose when there are so many options? While taking a summer course may seem like an easy decision so I could knock out requirements I did not make it lightly. I’ll be working full time this summer and want to avoid getting burned out. The summer…


The Simmons Zine Collection

About a month ago, I started a new job working in Beatley Library on campus. I got my very own cubicle, equipped with a computer, a scanner and a label printer, but one corner is dominated by two boxes of uncataloged zines. I came to learn that Simmons houses a sizable collection of zines that have been curated for years, and it was the job of my predecessor to catalog and process them.  Unfamiliar with zines? Here’s the rundown: “zines are a noncommercial, nonprofessional, small-circulation magazines which their creators produce, publish, and distribute themselves” (Duncombe). There is usually a DIY crafting component in the creation of a zine, followed by photocopying, folding, and stapling into pamphlets. Zines are inexpensive and easy to make, which has led them to play an important role in activism. The Simmons librarian, Dawn Stahura, who really kicked off the zine collection wrote (in a zine): “Zines are not only creative they are unique primary sources, a gateway into the lives of the marginalized, the silenced, the overlooked.” A unique cataloging…


Pushing Through Spring Semester

If you’re like me then you might already be hoping for summer to start. The weather, seemingly, is getting warmer. People are getting antsy in class and in the streets. In a few weeks, the swan boats will be on the pond, crowds of baseball fans will overrun Fenway, and tourists will swarm the city. Whether you stay in Boston over summer break or go elsewhere, we all still have the same hurdle to jump.  Ending the semester.  We are about a month out from the end of the semester so everyone is cracking down or about to crack down on finals. Here are some helpful tips on staying focused while also keeping yourself healthy. 


Looking Forward

I can’t believe the semester is almost over! My first semester went by so fast that I feel like it just started. I have been enjoying the warmer weather and getting to walk around Boston. I haven’t spent the Spring yet in Boston so I’m excited to see all the flowers bloom. While I’m looking forward to the semester ending so I can have a break, there is a lot of work to do between now and the end of the semester.  It’s almost time for fall class registration and I have been planning my classes for next semester. I’m looking forward to next semester and getting to take more electives. Graduate class registration is not as stressful as undergrad classes were so I don’t mind this process. The SLIS faculty is also smaller so I feel like it’s easier to know someone who has taken the class or had the professor before.


How to Survive the Boston Transit System: Tips for Commuter Students

I remember the days of living in a dorm and walking to class. Rolling out of bed, throwing on a sweatshirt and brushing my teeth before taking a casual stroll across campus. Then, later, popping back over to my room to take a nap or grab a snack. Now, as a commuter student, I’m a compulsive Google Maps refresher, with a 20 minute walk and a 30 minute bus ride. It’s tough being a commuter student, and it isn’t helped by the commuting options in Boston being unreliable at best and completely broken at worst. Here are some commuting tips from someone who’s walked, biked, bused, and braved the MBTA to get to Simmons. Always check before you go. The transit systems in Boston are constantly changing, and even if your commute is usually consistent, that can change on any random day. A holiday might mean that the buses are running on a different schedule. A road can suddenly be blocked off for construction. Don’t even get me started on the MBTA. If something’s down,…


Half-Way There Check-In

It’s difficult to believe that the semester is halfway over! I started at Simmons this semester and the time has flown by. As a dual LIS – Archives concentration and History degree student I have enjoyed the balance I’ve had between learning Information Science procedures and continuing my studies in History. My favorite part so far has been the discussions in LIS 407 and HIST 568 regarding ethics, engaging with the public/users, and what role collections care and stewardship plays in both. In HIST 568 we had a site visit at The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum where we met with an archivist and discussed how some of these issues emerged in her day to day work. Part of why I chose the dual degree program was for opportunities like this— to connect what I’m doing in both degree programs as well as to think about how this will factor into my future career. I tend to be a bit critical of museums (blame my BA in Art History), but it’s a good…


Summer Session Summary

As the Summer II session begins to wrap up, an urge to write non-academically has been pushing at me. Writing for this blog in particular has been a source of joy, so I figured I should get back into it! In this post, I’ll take some time to detail both of the summer classes I took during Simmons’ two summer terms, as well as how I experienced academic burnout.  I took one class for each summer session this year, which totaled out to five credits. The first class was CHL 424C (Series Fiction – Middle Grade) and it took place from May 22nd to June 28th. This was a rigorous two credit course where we explored five genres of books that make up the foundation of the middle grade category. Not to be confused with middle school, middle grade books are written for a third to sixth grade audience. I enjoyed the depth that our discussion went into each week, but finding time to read an entire series in seven days was a challenge. When…


Welcome Emma!

We are adding another blogger to the mix. Everyone say hello to Emma! Hello friends! My name is Emma Hayden and I started my second semester as a dualHistory and Library & Information Science student at Simmons in January. I attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo where I got a degree in History with a minor in Religious Studies. I just moved to the Boston area in the fall from Southern California with my cat Phoebe. Phoebe (alsoknown as Pheebs) loves going on walks around Boston in her backpack! I have taken her withme on many adventures but I think our favorite spot so far is Fenway Park or the Boston PublicGarden. In my spare time I enjoy reading romance books, crocheting, and line dancing!I am new to the SLIS program, however I have really enjoyed the classes I have taken so farand am looking forward to my classes this semester. Last semester I got my first taste of basiccoding and markup languages in LIS 488: Technology for Information Professionals, which wasa lot more fun…


Summer Dreamin’ to Bust the Mid-Term Monotony

I have reached the monotonous section of the semester. School is chugging away, meaning there are papers to write, books to read, lib guides to build, and I am looking for the time needed to cook something more nutritious than top ramen or a quesadilla. If anybody told you the life of a graduate student is glamourous, they were seriously delusional. The graduate students I know tend to drink more coffee than is good for them, they struggle with anxiety, and all of them can’t wait to be doing the work that this degree will allow them to do. In library school many of the assignments serve as models. While it is necessary for a professor to have a standardized assignment to give out, it can personally be frustrating knowing that my work, as of yet, will not make a direct impact on a library or archive. The work I do is stuck in theoretical land. I am looking forward to truly doing the work, directly shaping collections and helping patrons. To expedite the process…


Libraries in Germany

It’s good to be back after a really nice winter break. Happy new year to everyone! I had a few grand adventures which I wanted to update you all on. After going home to Washington for Christmas and New Years, I went on a trip to Europe! This trip really revealed my library nerdiness. Almost every place we went I forced my friends to go on a mini exploration of the local libraries. In between rounds of museums, long walks on cobblestone streets and breaks of kaffee und kuchen here is where we went! Prague: Municipal Library of Prague—This is where the Instagram famous infinity books photos are taken. There was a huge line for the photo station, which I walked right by to go snoop in their library. Prague: Strahov Monastery Libraries—One is focused on theological texts and the other is on philosophical texts. They are all lusciously old. Made my archivist heart happy. Berlin: Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin—This library is so impressive. It is free to access and has some very cool collections. Berlin:…


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