Library Assistant -- Temporary, Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS), Boston MA

Library Assistant -- Temporary

The Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) seeks a Library Assistant - Temporary to support professional members of the library staff ensuring both access to and the security of the library's holdings, primarily through staffing the library orientation desk, overseeing researchers in the Society's reading room, and assisting full-time staff on special projects. The position is essential in facilitating access to, while maintaining the security of, the Society's collections.

The MHS is an independent research library that collects, preserves, and makes accessible manuscripts and other materials that promote the study of the history of our nation-a mission that has remained constant since 1791. The MHS holds more than 3,600 manuscript collections, as well as extensive collections of early American imprints, newspapers, maps, printed ephemera, photographs, engravings, and other research materials. The library is open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 8:45 AM-4:45 PM, Tuesday 8:45 AM to 7:45 PM, and Saturday 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

Hours: The regular hours for this position are 10-2 Monday-Friday (20 hours/week), with the possibility of additional hours when permanent staff take scheduled vacation or sick time. This temporary position is for a ten week term beginning July 8 and ending September 14 with some possibility for extension.

Pay Rate: $12.00/hour

Duties: The Library Assistant - Temporary is part of the Reader Services staff (6.5 FTE) and reports to the Reference Librarian. Duties include staffing the Society's library orientation room, registering researchers and explaining library policies and procedures, directing telephone calls, providing information about exhibitions, publications, and public programs; monitoring the Society's reading room, including the supervision of researchers, and securing all materials on hold for researcher use; processing requests for reproduction of library materials for reference purposes; and assisting with other library projects as needed.

The Library Assistant - Temporary will spend about half of their time assisting the Reference Librarian with special projects and the other half of their time staffing the orientation and reading rooms.

Requirements: The successful candidate will have a Bachelor's degree or be currently enrolled in a Bachelor's program. Coursework in history, with experience in a library, archives, or other public history setting preferred; a demonstrated interest in history and/or the library science profession strongly desired.

The successful candidate will also have experience working with a diverse public in a customer service or similar position, strong planning and organization skills with the ability to prioritize and multi-task, excellent written and oral communication skills, the ability to work as part of a team, the ability to consistently enforce policies and procedures, proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite, excellent attention to detail, and strong research skills. The ability to be flexible and to maintain professionalism in a fast-paced environment is essential.

This position requires the ability to lift boxes weighing up to forty pounds and to transport materials loaded onto wheeled carts.

Application procedure: Please send an application by email (preferred) or postal mail, including a cover letter, brief resume, and three references to Anna Cook, Reference Librarian, at or Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02215.

Applications must be received by the close of business on June 17, 2013 to be considered.

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