A Day in the Life of a JMRL Intern


Over the last decade, JMRL’s Central Library has participated in the annual CommunityAttention Youth Internship Program through the City of Charlottesville.  The program provides employment and workplace skill opportunities for area youth, and past interns have provided a great deal of help with numerous projects. This year’s intern has done some writing for the Grow.Learn.Connect blog, and as this summer’s program winds down, she offers some thoughts about her experience at the Central Library.

Every day I tend to wake up at six o’clock and get ready for the day. At 7: 45, I call my aunt to pick me up from home and drop me off at work. Once I get here, I tend to place my small bag away. Then, I put my Library Volunteer badge on and do my daily work of the Pick List, which includes picking up books from the shelves that people have requested to read. I enjoy doing this, because I can become familiar with the books that are in this library.

My job as an intern is to shadow various departments, so I work all over the library. Down in the reference area, I fold booklets and write blogs. In the central area, I tend to help with the pick list, along with the laminating machine, I shelve books sometimes, and get the books out of the book drop. And in the third floor of this library, I tend to shred papers, work with the Ellison die-cut machine, and do some work in the technical services department, which tends to be routine, and involves scratching the barcode off the books and stamping them in order for them to be withdrawn. I like the fact that I get to work everywhere in this library, because it helps me get to know the library better.

Working in this library makes me feel calm, because there isn’t a lot of hectic events that occur here. Because of this calm environment, I tend to do my job better without getting stressed about anything. And the people I have met here are very friendly, which is always a good thing. I would say that working in a library was a dream come true for me, because I hope to be surrounded by books. And I also have aspirations to become an author one day.


“I wasn’t popular, but I wasn’t an outcast. I was everywhere with everybody, and at the same time I was all by myself.”

bornacrimeThe Brown Baggers met on Thursday, July 18 to discuss Trevor Noah’s autobiography Born a Crime.

In Born a Crime, Trevor Noah recounts his childhood in South Africa under the apartheid government and the first few years of democratic rule by the nation’s black majority. His is the story of a disobedient young boy who had to hide from the world during the early years of his life since the government could take him from his mother if they were discovered. Noah tells stories from his childhood and high school years with a humorous twist. He describes visiting three churches every Sunday with his mother, being pushed out of a moving car, and navigating high school. Noah writes about how he struggled to fit in and how he always felt like an outsider.

The Brown Baggers loved this book and the discussion was full of laughter as members recounted their favorite parts of the book. Many felt that it was incredible how Noah was able to learn so many languages and become such an international star, when he had so little growing up and faced numerous challenges. Some Brown Baggers thought his success was due to his mother’s influence, who was such a strong person, and really pushed him to learn.

Some members said that they learned more about South Africa in general and about apartheid after reading this autobiography. They felt that Noah used humor to cope with everything that happened in his life and thought it was amazing that he was so observant, especially when he was so young. Others mentioned that this was a great story of survival.

Documentary: You Laugh But It’s True
Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali
The Kitchen House by Kathleeen Grissom
Left to Tell: Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Holocaust by Immaculee Ilibagiza
The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts by Joshua Hammer
Nelson Mandela

The Brown Baggers will discuss A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza on Thursday, August 15 at noon in the Central Library and newcomers are always welcome.

New book club kits available


On a hot summer day, what do you like to do? Drink lemonade? Stay indoors because you know the heat outside will kill you? Or, maybe you like to sleep? But, for those of you who love to read, I have a special surprise- new book club kits.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – Viann and Isabelle have always been close even if their age difference sets them apart. When World War II strikes, Antonie, Viann’s husband is called away to fight and Isabelle is sent to live with Viann. During this event in their lives, not only will the relationship of the sisters will be tested, but also their personal opinions on what is right and what is wrong.

She has her Mother’s Laugh by Carl Zimmer –  This nonfiction book tells the history of human understanding when it comes to hereditary and how that has shaped this society. It tells the transitions of genetic research and makes predictions on how our evolution will impact the future. If you enjoy science, you will most likely enjoy this book. This kit was funded by a grant from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine

Place a hold for The Nightingale here and for She has her Mother’s Laugh here.