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Poster Sessions

Molding Marketable Skills out of Mentee Interests

Presented by

  • Madeleine Gaiser (University of Cincinnati)
  • Malachai Darling (Indiana University-Bloomington)


College at all levels is an opportunity for students to learn and grow as professionals. Frequently, this is growth happens in jobs that provide real world experience, rather than in the classroom. However, the opportunity to grow and develop skills beyond routine work tasks and the classroom assignments are overlooked.

All students find something that pulls at their curiosity and gets them excited about the work they hope to do. It is responsibility of their mentors to notice this excitement and encourage their pursuits in a productive way. Enabling students to pursue personal projects helps them develop marketable skills and molds them into better professionals as the enter the job market. As they do projects motivated by personal interests, they develop talking points and stories that can be translated into cover letters and real-world job skills. This could be familiarizing themselves with the IRB process or exploring the broader implications or career relevance of topics covered in class. The mentor should be interested, express confidence, be a sounding board, and support students to take the next step in their project.

This poster will explore the steps the librarian mentors should take to support student worker mentees’ interests and personal projects.


Intro Video


Madeleine Gaiser is the Online Learning and Instruction Librarian for the College of Education

Malachai Darling is a recent graduate from Indiana University with a master's degree in Library Science and a specialization in Archives and Records Management. He has an interest in public services within archives and special collections and finds projects such as that described in the abstract allows him to grow and develop skills that better assist researchers in any institution.

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