This post was written by Jimmy Luong, Processing Student Assistant.
Hello, I am a freshman at George Mason University working on my degree as a government major with potentially a focus on international security. I first found out about the Special Collections Research Center when touring the Fenwick Library and finding SCRC. Ever since then, I wanted to work there in order to learn more about the function of the archives. My opportunity came when I found a job offer at SCRC and got an interview with Brittney Falter, the Research Services Coordinator, and Amanda Brent, the Processing Coordinator. After accepting the job, I was quite satisfied with how many collections that I would be working with. I was also very excited because this would also be my first job experience, as well.
Working at SCRC was a fun and new experience for me. My job primarily consisted of producing finding aids for unprocessed collections and occasionally unboxing collections, transferring the collections to new boxes, and occasionally sorting records. The collections I worked with ranged from one box collections such as the Fiscal Services records (R0098) to a 240 box collection like the Librarian records (R0095). I spent most of my time with a computer to type up new finding aids which is then sent to be edited and published online to be viewed by anyone who wants to see it. This job is fun but can also be sometimes confusing because of the coding needed to make a finding aid. It’s great that the processing team is usually always there to help you out with any issues you have. Overall, I enjoyed working at SCRC, and would definitely come back to work again if given the chance to.
This job compliments my academic goals and my personal interests. Ever since working in the public library back home, I have always been curious about the function and purpose of the archives because it seemed to be its own separate section. During my time at the archives, I got the chance to learn how to document and process undocumented records, as well as the opportunity to view many records from the various locations the collections were donated from. One of the reasons why I was particularly interested in working at Special Collections was it overlapped with my academic goals. My reasoning for this is that in order to be successful, you must be able to be able to have access to as much research materials as possible, and the best sources of research material came from the archives – therefore, working at the archives was the best way to gain access to it. My interests are government and history, and working here has allowed me to learn more about the legislative body of the school, also known as the Faculty Senate, through the Faculty Senate records (R0034), as well as the history of the schools in GMU. Working at Special Collections Research Center was rewarding and has been a step forward towards my academic goals.
During his time at SCRC, Jimmy completed ~82 finding aids – an unprecedented amount for one semester! Thank you Jimmy!
Follow Special Collections Research Center on Social Media at our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts. To search the collections held at Special Collections Research Center, go to our website and browse the finding aids by subject or title. You may also e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 703-993-2220 if you would like to schedule an appointment, request materials, or if you have questions. Appointments are not necessary to request and view collections.