The goal of the Washington University Libraries’ Summer Internship Program is to attract students from traditionally underrepresented groups to careers in academic and research libraries and archives. This summer, University Libraries interns Mashoud Kaba (left) and Alayzha Jordan (right) worked on special projects in the University Archives to document the 50-year history of Washington University’s African and African-American Studies Department.
The students also had the opportunity to write and design their own research guides, which are now available on the University Libraries’ website. Kaba created a guide to financial literacy for college students that covers topics such as building and understanding credit, living off campus for the first time, understanding student loans, and getting a car. Jordan put together a guide about violence in video games, focusing on the company Rockstar Games, Inc. Together, the interns researched and created a resource guide for first-generation college students, which addresses the academic, financial, and social issues that can arise in college.
“I was able to learn about so many different things in an environment that wasn’t rigid and allowed for growth and questions,” Kaba says of her summer at the University Libraries. “Our ideas as interns were just as important as anyone else’s. Our perspectives were embraced.”
The students also completed a research project on how university libraries across the country are using social media. Throughout the summer, they met with library staff to gain an understanding of the scope of work involved in academic libraries.
For more information about the program, please contact Rudolph Clay, head of Library Diversity Initiatives and Outreach and subject librarian for African and African-American studies and urban studies.