So, I guess this is goodbye. So much has changed since I first arrived here! On tree branches, snow has been replaced by flowers. Seeing the city blooming is pretty amazing. I would also like to think that my English has improved, though that may be wishful thinking! I am not sure I have fully mastered the NYC subway system, but I have definitely gotten better at finding my way around it.
In the past month, I’ve been working with Brigette on finding aids from the WAB and MRL collections. This was a great way to go hands-on, whether with archival material or XML language. I also got the opportunity to see more of Columbia University Libraries as a whole. I attended workshops on themes from Wikipedia in libraries to writing for Chemists. I also learned a lot about the hiring process of librarians in the USA, which is very different from the French system.
I really enjoy working with archive material, and I hope I will be able to see more of it, whether as a researcher in training or as a librarian. It is pretty thrilling to work with unique documents; I also like figuring out a collection or a group, how it articulates both as a whole and with other collections. It is pretty satisfying to organize them to make them available to a larger public. The Burke collections are very interesting: while they are pretty specialized, they approach a broad range of themes and places. During those three months, I got to experience several aspects of an archivist’s work, and I learned a lot about Columbia and Union as institutions. I am very grateful to the Burke Library staff for giving me this opportunity!