The Mary and Samuel Somit Preservation Internship Program at the University of Chicago Library offers an annual six-week internship in library preservation, conservation or digitization. The Program has been made possible through the generosity of Dr. Albert Somit, AB’41, PhD’47, University of Chicago alumnus and past president of Southern Illinois University. Established to honor his parents’ legacy, the internships support the needs of the Library and its collections and prepare students for the important work of preserving library resources for research and teaching.
The internship is intended to give current graduate students or recent graduates of a preservation or conservation program an opportunity to apply their skills and knowledge in a research library setting. Students will gain experience in a preservation program for the care of collections and undertake and complete a project based on the needs of the Library. Interns will work in the Library Preservation Department under the guidance of the Preservation Librarian and other library staff.
The posting for each annual internship is made in late January, with applications due at the beginning of March. more information on the Mary and Samuel Somit Preservation Internship including application requirements and deadlines, please see the Program Description.
Kathleen Adrienne Conn, the current Somit Intern, is working within the University of Chicago Library's Digitization Unit to establish a model workflow for the digitization of image collections in order to promote the interoperability of the Library's holdings with other image collections. Using the Middle East Photograph Archive, one of the first collections to be digitized and made available on the web in the mid-1990s, Adrienne has inventoried approximately 400 prints in order to provide standardized and up-to-date metadata as outlined by the Visual Resources Association's Core Schema. After being scanned at a high resolution and in full color, the resultant digital surrogates will be made available through an interface that allows for easy exploration of the collection by students, faculty, and researchers. In addition to determining procedures to be used for future efforts, this project explores the ways in which preservation activities can support information access and promote the Library's holdings.
Adrienne is a recent graduate of the University of Texas at Austin's School of Information, where she adopted preservation of the cultural record as the focus of her studies. Before pursuing her graduate degree Adrienne received a BA from Notre Dame of Maryland University in creative writing and English literature.