Without Rod Library’s dedicated student employees, the day-to-day operations of the library would not be possible. We wanted to take the time to recognize one of our outstanding student employees, who was just nominated for Student Employee of the Year.
Rachael Fix is a senior political communication major with minors in Spanish and journalism. Rachael started working as a student library assistant in the Fine and Performing Arts Collection on the top floor of the library almost as soon as she came to campus her freshman year. Now, four years later, Rachael is still working in the Fine and Performing Arts Collection and has gone above and beyond inside and outside of Rod Library.
Not only has Rachael excelled in her position at Rod Library, earning a nomination for Student Employee of the Year, but she has also excelled in her academic work. She was accepted into four graduate schools and has decided to attend the University of Iowa College of Law to become an immigration lawyer.
Working at Rod Library has not only provided Rachael with a great on-campus job, but it has also helped her to build the skills she will need post-graduation. “Working at Rod Library has helped me to sharpen my communication and research skills,” Rachael says. “This is going to help me a lot when it comes to being a lawyer because a good majority of the job is making sure you have materials ready and research done when you’re on a case.” Aside from communication and research skills, Rachael also says that working at Rod Library has helped her develop confidence in herself and has taught her to be prepared for anything.
Rod Library has also benefited Rachael outside of her role as a student employee. Rachael says, “Anytime I need anything in regards to homework and projects, there’s always something here I can use for help. Even if it’s cameras or microfilms, I not only have access to that, but the librarians are really good resources and always willing to help you. They know how to help you out with what’s going on and are patient and helpful when you’re frustrated.” Additionally, Rod Library was a great use to Rachael while she was studying for her LSAT exam. She had access to prep-books and practice tests and used Rod Library’s study spaces to help her prepare.
Rachael highly recommends that other students take advantage of the many things that Rod Library has to offer. She especially recommends that students attend social events put on by the library. Bash in the Stacks, RodCon, Around the World in 80 minutes, and the Makerspace are some of Rachael’s favorites. She says, “These events are a good way to socialize, but also get familiar with the building, the resources, and the librarians.”
When asked about the best part of her time at Rod Library, Rachael responded: “The best part of my stay has been my supervisor, Julie Ann Beddow. If I have problems, she helps me find the resources I need and helps direct me. She encouraged me to present my research at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research and attended my honors thesis presentation. It’s rare in life to have people who are willing to do that for you, but it’s even rarer to have people of such authority who are willing to do that for you.”
Julie Ann Beddow, Rachael’s supervisor, had this to say about Rachael: “Rachael has consistently surprised me with her confidence, organization, and ambition to follow her own vision. She understands people’s strengths and weaknesses and is able to communicate effectively to build positive work relationships. In fact, Rachael inspires me to take risks to become a better supervisor and to effectively do the same with other people. She is already missed!”
Thank you, Rachael, for all of your hard work and dedication to Rod Library!