Skip to main content
Photo of librarian Zachary Lewis

New to Roesch? So Am I!

By Zachary Lewis

When I was a freshman in college, I was totally intimidated by my university’s library. I didn’t know where to go for class, how to find books or articles, or which spaces I could or couldn’t use. I wanted to ask for help, but I didn’t want to look stupid. What if the question I asked was too obvious? What if I was already supposed to know the answer? I decided my best option was to avoid the library entirely. Smart move, right?

Library anxiety: It's real

As weird as it sounds, library anxiety is a real thing. Despite overcoming my freshman-year anxiety, earning a master’s in library and information science and working in libraries for nearly a decade, my first day on campus Oct. 31 as the University of Dayton’s new student success librarian brought back a lot of those feelings from my first year of college. I was completely overwhelmed! I took a deep breath and told myself what I tell every student who comes to me with doubts: You belong here.

We help tentative students like it's our job. Because, like ... it's our job.

Below are some tips, tricks and resources I used to navigate my first few days at Roesch. I hope they help you too.

  • Find a map! Roesch Library has seven floors. If you’re used to a smaller space, this could seem massive. I was afraid of getting lost, and that’s where the floor maps came in handy. If a floor map isn’t readily available, check out our elevators! Inside, the elevator doors are fitted with a convenient description of the purpose of each floor of the library. It makes finding what you’re looking for a cinch. https://udayton.edu/libraries/services/floor-maps.php
  • This is your space. Whether it’s your first time here or you’re putting the finishing touches on your thesis, Roesch Library is your space. If a study room is open, go in! If a computer isn’t being used, it’s all yours. Don’t be afraid to familiarize yourself with the space, move the furniture around and get comfortable. If you like to plan ahead, you can reserve a study room or one of the library’s group spaces. https://libcal.udayton.edu/
  • Ask for help. This may sound obvious, but it bears repeating. If you have questions about anything, ask for help. It’s what we’re here for! As information professionals, we field thousands of questions each year, and each one is worth answering. It doesn’t matter if it’s a question you’ve asked before or if it something that was covered in class that you forgot to write down. If you need answers, we’ll help you find them. Stop by the Hello desk or the Services desk, both on the renovated second floor, or you can schedule a one-on-one appointment with a librarian. https://udayton.edu/libraries/help.php

I hope you find these resources helpful. And if you still find yourself apprehensive when you walk through the doors, don’t worry. Remember: Sometimes even librarians get library anxiety!

— Zachary Lewis, assistant professor and student success librarian

— Photo by Ryan O'Grady

Previous Post

The Latest from the Government Publishing Office

Roesch Library celebrates 50 years in the Federal Depository Library Program in 2019. Here's a sampling of the latest additions from the Government Publishing Office.
Read More
Next Post

Eight Recommended Reads for a Long Weekend

Student success librarian Zachary Lewis shares short reviews of eight recent reads, all available for checkout from Roesch Library’s leisure collection or through OhioLINK.
Read More