As part of Alternative Spring Break, I had the opportunity to spend a week at the Tuscola Public Library, shadowing the head librarian and volunteering. As someone who is interested in rural libraries as vehicles for economic and civic revitalization, this was a great opportunity, as it gave me the chance to learn about all aspects of running such a library, from the administrative to the practical to the political, and gave me a concrete sense of what is possible in such a setting.
For my volunteer work, I helped with a reshelving and weeding of the nonfiction section, and also with day-to-day circulation and computer support tasks. I also did research and an initial draft for a public computing plan and budget in advance of a grant application for a new computer lab, which included devising several technology solutions at different price points and then obtaining pricing and quotes for those options. The results are not posted here for confidentiality reasons.