I began volunteering at the Farmington Public Library when I was ten years old, and have been a paid member of the staff for the past three years. I have worked with various youth oriented programs including the Great After School Program (G.a.S.p.), a weekly afterschool program for kids to get involved in arts and crafts.
I am big reader and my favorite thing to do is helping to pick books that we recommend to other teens. At G.a.S.p., we usually make book selections and arrange activities for our readers based on a theme like Valentines Day. I love to see how the children in G.a.S.p. get excited about coming to the library to participate in the story-telling sessions and other activities that we offer.
I enjoy my job as a whole - from creating programs to choosing book selections to creating displays. I’ve gained so many skills by watching and learning from my supervisor, Flo Trujillo. Some of the things she has taught me are how to keep calm under pressure and how to be professional. I’ve learned how these skills come in handy on several occasions. Once, we had prepared to host 30 patrons for a movie night. I helped to set up the room and made sure that everything was ready ahead of time. But when we opened the doors, I got really scared because we had more than 100 unexpected guests show up. At first, I felt overwhelmed but I calmed down and with my team members, quickly got to work to solve the problem. We were able to get more food, find additional chairs and get everyone situated.
My job at the library has provided me with valuable work experience and taught me leadership skills like responsibility, confidence and teamwork. I was really happy the first time I was able to lead a project. I knew that if the event succeeded, it would look good on me. The job also helped me overcome my shyness because I needed to be comfortable talking with people and giving them guidance. Once I got over my shyness, my favorite part of my job was actually interacting and talking with the patrons.
Sometimes, my job is challenging when people question my authority because of my age. For example, I may have to tell an individual to stop doing something and they don’t want to listen to me because I am so young. I’ve learned to stand my ground and in cases where they won’t listen, I will bring other team members to back me up.