NCU News

Mentorship: NCU Library Staff Publish Article About Working With Students

Northwest Christian University’sOLA director of the Kellenberger Library Steve Silver, and Karen Head, the library’s public services supervisor, have co-authored: Mentor Where You Are: Informal Mentoring of Student Workers, an article published in OLA Quarterly, the official publication of the Oregon Library Association.

In their article, Silver and Head wrote about their approach to mentoring student workers through an informal program that carries many of the hallmarks of a formal mentoring program implemented at other university libraries.

What follows are several excerpts from their article:

“While we may think of formalized programs and upper leadership positions when we hear the word “mentor,” the truth is that nearly every one of us has ample opportunity to be a mentor right in the position we currently hold.”

“Mentoring is not a responsibility we take lightly. It involves patience, compassion and the understanding that everyone has their own pace in the process of incorporating learning into practice.”

“By being more than merely a supervisor, and by treating our student workers as more than just a student worker, we like to believe that we have contributed to the success these former students now enjoy in our own profession. Through our actions, words, and decisions, we exemplify the positive values and worth of librarianship to student workers.”

“Mentoring students is something all of us on campus do,” Silver said.  “It is part of the intimate, rigorous academic experience students expect when they enroll at NCU.”

About Northwest Christian University
Northwest Christian University is a liberal arts institution dedicated to providing a transformational education that champions wisdom, faith and service. Accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, the University was founded in 1895 and is affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the Christian Churches/Churches of Christ. Northwest Christian University offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in traditional undergraduate, adult degree, and graduate program formats, as well as online programs for MBA and M.Ed. More information about the University is available at