Navigation Aids

Human Resources @ the Penn Libraries


Main Content

Student Employment in the Libraries

Student jobs in the University Libraries at Penn are diverse in their location, responsibilities, scheduling options, and skill requirements. Jobs range from the ones everyone sees and associates with working in a library such as shelving, checking out books, and doing research, to less visible ones such as book preservation, cataloging, and web-design. Student workers are an integral contribution to every department in the University Libraries. Having a part-time job while you are taking classes is both an opportunity to earn money, as well as a chance to learn time management, gain work experience, and a reference for future potential employers. We have jobs with daytime, evening, and weekend hours. There are libraries all over campus, convenient to whatever your daily route might be. Students work with texts in foreign languages, lend computer expertise, and assist in the music listening room. No matter what your interests are, you can easily find a job of interest in one of the Libraries at Penn.

Job Fair for Student Employment
April 17, 2017

Job Descriptions: 

Biomedical Student Assistant. $7.40/hr

Circulation - checking books in and out of the Biomedical Library, answering the phones, and patron questions.  Refer questions to a Support Staff or Reference person, as appropriate. No experience, will train. Must be detail oriented and have good interpersonal skills.

Development Student Assistant. $7.65/hr

The libraries Advancement office seeks a student to perform varied tasks in support of the Penn Libraries. These tasks include, but are not limited to, data entry, office mailings, campus errands, filing, telephoning, and routine office tasks, proofreading, and copy editing.


Candidates should be mature, responsible, highly organized and detailed-oriented, and must handle confidential material with discretion. Knowledge of MS Office (Excel, mail merge) and familiarity with databases desired. Basic photography and photo editing skills, and familiarity with social media and Constant Contact a plus.

Rosengarten Assistant. $9.75/hr

Assist library users at the Rosengarten Reserve desk.

 Stacks Assistant. $7.40/hr

Shelve books in Library of Congress and Dewey decimal classification system. Assist patrons and students with locating books and library materials.

Postcataloging Assistant. $8/hr.

Physical processing of books for shelves (including property stamping, printing/cutting/affixing spine labels, checking bibliographic information on Voyager; unpacking boxes of new books for bibliographers’ review.

Dental Library Assistant. $7.40/hr

Assist at the circulation desk of the Dental Library.

Scholarly Commons Assistant

This year-round position is to assist the ScholarlyCommons staff in a variety of activities and projects related to ScholarlyCommons and academic publishing. The student will have flexible options to work throughout the Fall and Spring semesters as well as the Summer, if they so choose. This position is offered on a rolling basis; applications will be accepted at any time throughout the year. 

The assistant will be trained in and responsible for: working with faculty CVs and other materials to be included in ScholarlyCommons; determining copyright/restrictions/ permissions necessary for posting a work to ScholarlyCommons; contacting publishers to receive permission, as necessary determining open access and other licensing policies recording the results of permissions research using Penn Libraries resources to find copies of materials posting works to ScholarlyCommons
The assistant may help to maintain quality assurance of current works in ScholarlyCommons (identifying errors in records, batch revising entries using Google Sheets, etc.), as well as occasionally participate in special projects. 

Qualifications: Strong attention to detail; strong communication skills, both written and oral; strong research skills (ability to find information using a variety of sources, both print and electronic); ability to learn quickly and keep information well organized; ability to work independently; Microsoft Office knowledge (especially Word and Excel); experience with Google suite (Sheets, Docs); familiarity with library services (catalog, document delivery, interlibrary loan, etc.); basic HTML skills preferred (but not necessary); basic knowledge of any foreign language is helpful but not required; experience with or interest in copyright and/or the publishing process is a plus but not required.

Museum Library Assistant. $7.40/hr

Shelving books, Pulling books for ILL, Working the circulation desk, Assisting patrons with finding books, Stacks maintenance.

Circulation Desk Assistant. $7.40/hr

Checkout and renew books, videos, and laptops for patrons. Create item records for items that require them. Check bins for returned items. Sort books, videos, laptops to their appropriate locations. Hand out and accept returned Interlibrary Loan materials, assist and direct patrons with problems, answer general information questions.

Fisher Fine Arts Library Assistant. $7.40/hr

The Fisher Fine Arts Library is looking for Penn work-study students to work at our library this summer. All candidates must have the following: good written and oral communication skills, sound judgment, an ability to work independently, be detail oriented, be dependable and reliable, be customer serviced oriented, and have familiarity with Microsoft Office. Candidates who are customer service oriented, flexible, and good humored are encouraged to apply.  Job responsibilities include opening/closing of the library, shelving books, shifting books, shelf reading, staffing the circulation/reserve desks, basic data entry, and other special projects. 

Interlibrary Loan Student Assistant. $7.90/hr

Process Borrow Direct and Ez Borrow books. Unwrapping and sorting mail and directing books to the appropriate department. Organizing and wrapping outgoing mail. Searching for books at Fine Arts and the Museum library as well as the Van Pelt stacks. Lift boxes, up to 40 lbs.

Special Collections Assistant. $8.10/hr

End-processing of rare materials including re-housing, minor repairs, shelving, collections maintenance. Maintenance of bibliographic records for rare books and manuscripts. Creation of preliminary inventories and finding aids for printed and manuscript materials.


Foreign language skills highly desirable. Proficiency with Microsoft Office required. Experience handling rare and fragile materials highly desirable.Familiarity with issues related to special collections desirable. Ability to organize and present information required. Ability to pay attention to detail required.