Volunteering at WILU 2014

Western, from May 21-23, hosted the annual Workshop for Instruction in Library Use (WILU).

I volunteered on the 21st and 22nd. I was a runner and directed people to certain rooms where workshops were hosted. I can’t emphasize how easy and repetitive it was and I encourage all library students to volunteer at future WILU conferences. I simply greeted and pointed people to specific rooms.

Here are the perks of volunteering:

  • It’s an opportunity to meet your colleagues in the program and ask them about their experiences and recommendations for courses. I was paired up with a recent MLIS graduate and she had great advice for which courses to enroll into and how to prepare for co-op applications. You will also work with other librarians. My experience in the  field is that many are eager to know about your progress and provide you with advice.
  • Volunteering was a short commitment; my two shifts totaled 6 hours.
  • You can attend some of the talks. Though I did not take advantage of it because of my schedule, it would have been great to attend.
  • You will get swag. Lots of it.
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Not featured: The food I consumed.

Here are some tips for future volunteers:

  • Bring a phone/watch with you. It’s important to keep track of time if assigned with short shifts.
  • Know your surroundings. You may be placed on an unfamiliar part of campus. Make sure to know what’s immediately around you, such as the closest restroom, as you will definitely be asked that.
  • Keep a copy of the programme. The pamphlet will provide important information that you will need, such as the location of workshops and when they take place.

To get involved, just wait for an email calling for volunteers and respond.

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