News Flash

Life at the Library

Posted on: April 13, 2018

A Day at the Library: Kerri Maher, Hardwood Creek Library

kerri maher-143

Kerri Maher is a library services assistant at Hardwood Creek Library in Forest Lake. She has been working for Washington County Library since 2016.

Library Services Assistants, or LSAs, are the people who sit at the service desk, assisting with checkouts and issuing library cards. We also do a whole lot more throughout the day.

kerri maher-400LSAs usually start about a half-hour before the library opens. One of the first things we do is go outside to gather newspapers and stamp them with “Washington County Library.” Then we bring them out to the newspaper display shelves and move the previous day’s papers. This gives a chance to walk through library before it opens. It’s quiet and calm.

After we have the papers out and start up the computers in the back room and at the service desk, we print out lists of expired holds, as well as requested holds. We remove cancelled holds and holds that have been on the shelf for more than seven days. Then an LSA takes a list of requested items and pulls them from all over the library.    

In the morning, and continually throughout the day, we clear the book drops. Both the drop near the front entrance and the drive-up drop fill up with books sorted into a variety of bins based on segments of the library. Some items are not checked in right away and we need to manually check in those materials. It could be that they belong to another library or that they are going out for a hold. We need to check the condition of every material that is returned. Each disc in an audiobook is checked, and all of the books are looked through for personal items and damages. We call customers who’ve returned materials missing content, like missing discs from DVDs, CDs, and audiobooks. Damaged materials are written up to be examined by one of our LSAs who specializes in these items.

kerri blog carts-600

When we are ready to open, we have the service desk stocked with necessary materials and we turn on the sign. The doors are opened to customers, and while at the service desk we assist with checkouts, issue library cards, attend to customer concerns, and accept fines and payment for sale items. We also answer phones, place holds, and answer questions. We try to greet each person as they come and go from the library. During this time, we also sort carts into order for shelving.

kerri blog hardwood creek-600

Each LSA spends portions of their day shelving. We take the sorted carts, which are appropriated to certain parts of the library, and shelve all items. In addition to checking in, sorting, and shelving items returned to the library, each weekday we receive deliveries from other Washington County Library locations. Some of the materials “live” at our library and are being returned from another WCL location, and some are requested items that will go on the holds shelf for pick-up. Each item in every bin needs to be checked in and condition-checked, then directed to the appropriate location. In addition to receiving deliveries from other branches, we have bins filled and ready to go out to other locations, as well.

There are so many other little things that go into an LSAs day, but most importantly we are here to be of service to our customers.

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Life at the Library

Photo of kids discussing books at a book club.

Calling all kids, join a book club!

Posted on: October 1, 2019
low angle photo of books

Our most popular checkouts of summer 2019

Posted on: September 23, 2019
free things graphic

Get more for free with your library card!

Posted on: September 17, 2019
national library week 2019

It's National Library Week!

Posted on: April 8, 2019
ingredients on a cutting board

Beat the winter blues with some good eats!

Posted on: February 28, 2019
rainbow bookshelf

Our most popular checkouts of January 2019

Posted on: February 15, 2019
spotlight on books blog

Spotlight On… African American History

Posted on: February 1, 2019
imacs at RHS

Reserve an iMac at R.H. Stafford Library

Posted on: January 30, 2019
drawing of a brain with analytical and creative illustrations

Get creative this January

Posted on: January 3, 2019
LibCal full calendar

Check out our new events calendar!

Posted on: December 31, 2018
Most Popular Books 2018 Adult Nonfiction

Our most popular nonfiction of 2018

Posted on: December 28, 2018
Most Popular Books 2018 Adult Fiction

Our most popular adult fiction of 2018

Posted on: December 27, 2018
a pile of wrapped presents

Spotlight On...Our Favorite Things

Posted on: November 29, 2018
black friday text

Celebrate Black Friday at the Library!

Posted on: November 21, 2018
Person writing in a journal

Spotlight On...Writing

Posted on: October 29, 2018
family photos

Spotlight On...Genealogy

Posted on: October 1, 2018
dollar sign-600

How much is your library card worth?

Posted on: September 17, 2018
book in sand-600

Our most popular checkouts of summer 2018

Posted on: September 12, 2018
Library card options

Your library card -- 3 ways!

Posted on: September 10, 2018
VW bus

Smart Travel series kicks off Sept. 12

Posted on: September 3, 2018

Spotlight On...Back to School

Posted on: August 31, 2018
Storytime at Oakdale Library

What's in store for fall storytimes?

Posted on: August 29, 2018
glasses and stack of books

Nonfiction that blew our minds!

Posted on: August 20, 2018
hold shelf at Park Grove library

Our most popular checkouts of July

Posted on: August 8, 2018
simplify your life

Spotlight On...Simplifying Your Life

Posted on: August 2, 2018
Ballet performance

Summer survival with smARTpass

Posted on: July 24, 2018
STEM Saturdays child holding snake

VIDEO: Step into STEM Saturdays

Posted on: July 19, 2018
Library booth

You Scream, We Scream

Posted on: July 16, 2018
Computer with 404 Message

Public computer upgrades underway

Posted on: June 29, 2018
computer board

Spotlight On...STEM

Posted on: June 29, 2018
Jack the dog the library

Posted on: June 22, 2018
apple and books

Spotlight On... Summer Learning

Posted on: May 31, 2018
healthy food and a cookbook

Spotlight On... Health

Posted on: April 30, 2018
handshake at a business meeting

Spotlight On... Jobs and Careers

Posted on: March 30, 2018

ALLDATA is back!

Posted on: March 5, 2018
map and camera

Spotlight On...Travel

Posted on: February 28, 2018
short stack of books

Our most popular books of January 2018

Posted on: February 12, 2018
Library cards in a pile

New library cards designs unveiled

Posted on: February 2, 2018
NoveList screen shot

Spotlight On...Book Clubs

Posted on: February 1, 2018