Student employment in the McGill Library benefits the entire McGill community. At almost 100 strong this academic year, McGill Library student workers gain valuable work experience while engaging in academic pursuits. Student navigators, curatorial interns, special project assistants and student researchers bring an immeasurable amount to the life and culture of the Library. Over the next few weeks, Library Matters will share testimonials from library student workers, many of whom come to us through programs like McGill’s Work Study Program and are supported by students societies and associations like the SSMU Library Improvement Fund (LIF), the Arts Undergraduate Society, the McGill Music Undergraduate Student Association (MUSA) and Post Graduate Students’ Society (PGSS). Thank you to all our student workers – your hard work and dedication mean the world to the Library and McGill!
Rowan Grice (U2, B.Ed.) currently works in the Marvin Duchow Music Library (MDML) as a Student Navigator and Music Student Computer Room Consultant. His position is supported by the SSMU LIF and MUSA. Rowan hopes to teach English and Music at the secondary level. He’s played various instruments since the age of 5 and graduated from a music engineering/performance program in Ontario before attending McGill.
Q: What made you want to apply to work for the MDML?
Rowan Grice (RG): As a student, I have always had great experiences at the MDML. The staff is always so supportive and kind, I wanted to contribute to the already fantastic reputation of the library. Coming from a background in music technology, I was eager to be in a position to share my knowledge and expertise with students, faculty and members of the community.
Q: What kind of work have you been doing at MDML?
RG: I work in the Music Student Computer Room, which provides state-of-the-art tech resources to McGill music students. My responsibilities include offering tech support to students, and ensuring that all of our equipment is up to date and running smoothly. Additionally, I work at the library service desk where I loan out audio-visual equipment and help patrons search for materials.
Q: What do you like about working at the MDML?
RG: Working at the MDML, I feel lucky to be able to help patrons in utilizing the library to its fullest potential. It is great feeling to introduce resources to patrons they did not know were available to them, and to offer support and guidance along the way.
Q: What surprised you the most about working at MDML?
RG: I was amazed by the sheer amount of audio/visual equipment available at the MDML and the speed at which new equipment is acquired. From cameras and projectors to high-quality microphones and audio interfaces, I have never encountered a library that offers so many A/V items that are not only kept in excellent condition but updated frequently to match the ever-evolving fields of audio and video production.
Q: Coolest/oddest/most interesting thing you have come across/experienced?
RG: One of my favourite aspects of working at the MDML is discovering unique scores, records, CDs and books that I might never have come across otherwise. Currently, I am borrowing a piece of music literature documenting the rise and fall of new wave music in the 1980s, and a 1974 graphic score for solo amplified flute by McGill alumni Ted Dawson.
Q: Any “Aha!” moments or takeaways from the experience?
RG: My biggest “aha” moment was realizing that there are a great number of ways in which libraries can, and should be utilized by students, faculty and members of the community. The full-time MDML staff work extremely hard behind the scenes to develop new ways in which patrons can interact with the increasingly diverse resources of the MDML, and I feel privileged to play a part in bringing that to life.