Health Sciences Library

I’m back in action with an extra gig! This summer I’ve taken on a new position as a grad hourly at the University of Illinois – Chicago Health Sciences Library in Urbana. Basically it is a branch library of the health sciences library at UIC in Chicago that serves the branch medical program located here in central Illinois. So far working here has been a great way to expand my experiences in science librarianship, as the patron base, subject material, and policies/work environment are all slightly different than my steady gig over at the Funk Library.

My first big project was to help with the recovery from a flood they had this past spring! The library is housed on the 1st and 2nd floors of the Medical Sciences building. A few months ago pipes burst on the 3rd floor where renovations have been ongoing for months, leaking gallons of water right onto the bookshelves! 😦

This is still what it looks like today; tarp + missing ceiling tiles = fear for the books!
This is still what it looks like today; tarp + missing ceiling tiles = fear for the books!

Luckily this happened during business hours, so staff members leapt into action and moved hundreds of books out of the watery area. Unfortunately many books were damaged beyond easy/cheap repair; therefore, the library’s insurance will likely pay for the repurchasing of most of the damaged books that the library still wants.

Water and books just never mix. I've found everything from severe warping to dark mold. Don't worry, I wear gloves!
Water and books just don’t mix well. I’ve found everything from severe warping to dark mold. Don’t worry, I wear gloves!

Thus, one of my first projects this summer was creating an inventory of the damaged books, including current availability and price, to submit to the administration and insurance company. It was definitely a dirty job (with occasional mold; yuck!) but also very necessary for the library to eventually bounce back. In the meantime, the construction is still ongoing (but hopefully now with less book damage!) and I’m on to more projects, which I will detail later in the summer. If you’re in the area, feel free to stop by and visit!

Library of the Health Sciences – Urbana
102 Medical Sciences Building
506 S. Mathews
Urbana, Illinois, 61801

Hours: Monday-Friday, 8:30AM-5PM


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