Jazmin, who joined the library staff in 2014, works at the Mattapan Branch of the Boston Public Library with people of all ages. Supporting the Center of Knowledge principle of the Compass Strategic plan, she works to support the technical literacy of library users through working with other staff members to facilitate technology classes at the branch.
Why do you enjoy working for the library?
I love building new connections with library users; I have some regulars who come in now and we know each other’s names. I get to know what their needs or challenges are and build upon them.
Describe your experience teaching the laptop classes.
Each seasonal session, we offer the same basic classes to help beginners build their skills - navigating the web, word processing, social media, etc. Occasionally we get a guest speaker; we recently had a cyber security class for seniors. I walk around, make sure everyone is on the same page, and dialogue and review with everyone. I get the chance to demonstrate and explain things on the fly frequently when participants bring up new questions, which is stimulating. Regardless of the challenge of the day, it is exciting to help people acquire new skills.
How do you see users interacting with technology?
Technology has become a necessity, especially with job applications. I assist people looking for jobs via the Internet and I help guide them to sites and resources that are helpful. A large number of people who come in go straight to Bing or Google and not the BPL webpage, so I like to mention at least a few services we provide directly from our own site. Users come in with e-readers and that is my opportunity to tell them about BPL services specific to devices, for example, OverDrive.
What is your favorite service offered by the BPL?
I’d have to say OverDrive; some of my favorite audiobooks are on there. It’s nice to borrow them first and then if I like them, I might buy a few.