Two Weeks In

I’ve been so busy the past few weeks. The last two weeks in particular have left me busier and more exhausted than I’ve been in a while. But I’m also more excited than I’ve been in years.

I can’t talk about my internship too much on this blog, except to say that it’s amazing; the people I work with are super, the work is interesting and important (even though I am a lowly intern, I’m making accessible some of the most important original materials in several fields, to everyone from UT freshmen to accomplished foreign scholars), and I’m loving every minute of it. I’ve known for a while that I’d love working in an archive—ever since I toured the library and archives at Texas A&M University-Commerce with Library Services Coordinator Craig Wheeler in 2005. Though I’m still climbing a steep learning curve as a new intern, I’m already enjoying the work even more than I expected; for the first time in my life, I find myself looking forward to my job every day.

Meanwhile, my classes are really enjoyable so far. I’m especially excited about Sarah Cunningham’s course, Introduction to Audio Preservation and Reformatting. Last week, we had a two-hour Skype session with Sam Brylawski!

Luckily, the iSchool Lab loans computers to students—I borrowed a laptop for the second week of class! The MacBook Air I ordered finally arrived yesterday (nine business days after ordering), and I’m writing this post on it. It’s my first Mac for personal use, so I’m pretty psyched about that, though it’s been hard to switch back and forth between the various keypads I’ve been using in disparate locations over the past two weeks.

My main goal at the moment is figuring out a workable routine for studying. Because the assignments for my Thursday afternoon class are due by Wednesday morning at 9:00am, and I have class from noon to 3:00 and again from 6:00 to 9:00 on Tuesdays, my work is front-loaded, and I have to get all my readings done and absorbed by Monday night. So there go my weekends for the rest of the semester! But most of the articles and excerpts are interesting to me on some level, so I’ve been enjoying it so far. The only free time I’ve had for the past two weeks has been spent watching that horrible Longhorns game last weekend, my regular unwind with the Real Housewives of New Jersey, and one Feminist Justice League administrative meeting. So staying organized is of paramount importance, since I also intend to make a 4.0 every semester. Ha ha ha.

The only definite project I have in the pipeline at the moment is a short presentation to my audio class about wire recordings. I knew nothing about this technology until this week, so it will be pretty fun, I think. Two of our core texts are Jonathan Sterne’s The Audible Past: Cultural Origins of Sound Reproduction and David Morton’s Sound Recording: The Life Story of a Technology. At my professor’s suggesting, I hope to do some work with the Ransom Center’s collection of Gloria Swanson wire recordings, too.

As if I wasn’t busy enough, I’ve also joined the Society of American Archivists-UT chapter (have you seen their wonderful Texas Archive War canvas tote?!), signed up for a Coursera metadata class, and registered for the 2013 Digital Libraries Foundation Forum.

I don’t know when I’m going to have time to learn the lap steel. But it’s still on my list!


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