Student Jobs in Special Collections & University Archives at UMD!

Want to pursue a career as a librarian or archivist? Do you love libraries and “old stuff”? Are you detail-oriented? Looking for a job on campus with great colleagues? Good news,  Special Collections and University Archives is hiring student assistants!

IMG_0790Student assistants in Special Collections and University Archives at UMD experience a wide variety of public and behind-the-scenes elements of the special collection library/archival field.  They work closely with curators and library staff to make accessible some of the University’s most valuable research collections. And working in Special Collections and University Archives is also a lot of fun!

Our collections cover a wide variety of subjects/formats, including literary manuscripts and rare books, UMD history, labor history, the state of Maryland and other historical collections, mass media and culture, and women’s history. Student assistants get hands on experience working with unique materials like photographs from the Baltimore News American and the Diamondback, audio-visual materials from NPR, paper records of the AFL-CIO, 17th and 18th century French pamphlets, and much more!

Student assistant responsibilities may include the following:

  • Staffing the Hornbake welcome desk.
  • Retrieving and shelving special collection materials and providing assistance to researchers in the Maryland Room, the reading room for Special Collections and University Archives.
  • Processing Special Collections materials, including book, archival, and/or digital collections.
  • Contributing to special projects, events, and exhibits.

We are looking for enthusiastic students who have an ability to learn quickly, good written and verbal communication skills, a passion for history and cultural heritage, a willingness to work collaboratively and with minimal supervision, and are comfortable with computers and technology. Experience in an archives/special collection library or doing historical research is helpful but not essential.

Knowledge, experience, or strong interest in one or more of the following is preferred: archives; book processing; providing reference assistance; social media and website creation.

We hire student assistants throughout the year.  Applicants must be able to maintain a schedule of 15-20 hours per week. These are hourly positions only; not a graduate assistantship. The University of Maryland is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

To inquire about open student positions in Special Collections and University Archives, contact Amer Kohl at amberk@umd.edu.

Visit New Football Exhibit

Terrapin Tales

Calling all Terps fans! A new exhibit in Hornbake Library’s Maryland Room features a selection of photos, programs, pennants, uniforms, and more from the University Archives’ collections commemorating the football team’s 125th year. From the team’s humble beginning in 1892 to today, our Maryland Terrapins have created many memorable moments including 11 conference championships, 27 […]

via New exhibit celebrates 125 years of Maryland football — Special Collections and University Archives at UMD

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Upcoming Exhibit: Fall 2017

For Liberty, Justice, and Equality: Unions Making History in America

Opening in September, we are pleased to present Hornbake Library’s first major exhibit about labor history.  The exhibit will feature materials from the AFL-CIO Archive that were transferred to University of Maryland’s Special Collections four years ago in 2013.

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The exhibit explores the labor movement’s involvement with issues of economic equality, including the struggle for the eight-hour day and a living wage; reveals its deep roots with the civil rights’ and women’s movements; and documents lesser-known connections with the movements for LGBTQ equality, immigrant rights, religious freedom, environmental justice and international workers’ solidarity.

We hope you will join us as we explore how the labor movement has evolved from discriminatory positions to progressive ones, fighting for equality for all people. Hundreds of unique documents, images, videos, and artifacts will be on display from the Labor History Collections within the Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Maryland Libraries.

The exhibition will run from September 2017 – July 2018 in the Maryland Room Exhibit Gallery, located in Hornbake Library at the University of Maryland, College Park.

For more information, email us at askhornbake@umd.edu, and visit the online exhibition.

Follow us here, on Twitter, and Instagram to learn more about the exhibit.
@hornbakelibrary #UMDlabor

Postcards from our #LibraryGetaways

This past month, we went on summer vacation in the stacks! We’ve been highlighting our vast postcard collections on Instagram as a part of the #librarygetaway challenge (check out our posts from each Wednesday in July).

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The postcards in our collections are a significant source for understanding how Americans have spent their leisure and vacation time throughout history. Our online exhibit, Greetings from Vacationland: Early Postcards and the Rise of Leisure in the United States: 1890-1920, takes a deep dive into our collections and features early postcards of national parks, scenic resorts, amusement parks, historic sites, world’s fairs, and American cities.

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Sue Fryer Ward: An Advocate for Maryland’s Senior Citizens

The Sue Fryer Ward papers were recently donated to the University of Maryland’s Special Collections by Ward’s daughter, Lucille Ward Walker. They chronicle Ward’s activities as a licensed social worker and her political career at the county and state level. A first in a series of donations, this particular group of materials includes Sue Fryer Ward’s correspondence, news clippings, speeches, certificates and other awards, reports, and photographs.

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Photograph of Sue Fryer Ward with then-County Executive Parris Glendening, 1994. Note reads: “To Sue: With warmest congratulations. You have been a key to the progressive spirit of this county. Parris.” Sue Fryer Ward papers, Special Collections and University Archives, University of Maryland Libraries.

Ward was passionate about advocating for the rights of elders. As a child, she spent ten years living on a Navajo reservation while her father worked for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. She witnessed the respect that the Navajo tribe paid to their elders; this experience helped to inspire the work she did on behalf of senior citizens. Ward was the director of the Department of Aging for Prince George’s County from 1982 to1991. During this time, she worked closely with then-County Executive Parris Glendening to improve health care, transportation, and housing options for elders. Ward was also the director of the County’s Department of Family Services from 1992 to 1995. By consolidating the Department of Aging with the Commission for Women, the Commission for Persons with Disabilities, the Commission for Children and Youth, and the Commission for Families, Ward and other officials were able to better serve those in need by combining their knowledge and resources. As governor of Maryland, Parris Glendening later named Ward the director of Maryland’s Office on Aging, a position that she held between 1995 and1998. This agency became a Cabinet-level department in 1998 and Ward was appointed the Secretary of Aging for the State of Maryland. She was the first person to hold this position.

After Ward left government service in 2003, she became the grassroots director for the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. In this role, she fought against cuts to Social Security and Medicare and led efforts to educate citizens across the nation about the importance of these programs. Ward retired from this position in 2011.

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Photograph of Sue Fryer Ward with a colleague at the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, ca. 2003. Sue Fryer Ward papers, Special Collections and University Archives, University of Maryland Libraries.

Sue Fryer Ward was also a candidate for the House of Representatives in 1978. She challenged Republican incumbent Marjorie Holt for the seat of Maryland’s Fourth District. During her campaign, she focused on employment, inflation, energy, and the improvement of services like day care, education, and housing. The Sue Fryer Ward papers include news clippings, campaign buttons, stickers, an election guide, and correspondence which relate to this ultimately unsuccessful congressional campaign.

Throughout her life, Ward remained politically active. She helped to staff polls on Election Day and participated in various political demonstrations. Ward received the 1994 Gladys Noon Spellman Award for Excellence in Public Service for her service to the Prince George’s County government. She also received a 2001 Kathleen Kennedy Townsend Award of Excellence to Outstanding Women in Government Service. The Maryland chapter of the National Association of Social Workers selected Ward as the Social Worker of the Year in 2003. She was also posthumously inducted into the Maryland Women’s Hall of Fame in 2015. Many of the certificates and plaques that Ward earned throughout her career are included in this group of materials.

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Campaign buttons. Sue Fryer Ward papers, Special Collections and University Archives, University of Maryland Libraries.

Among its several collection strengths, the Maryland and Historical Collections unit strives to document the activities of Maryland women in politics through active collecting. Researchers can learn more about similar resources by consulting the Women’s Political Papers section of the Women in Maryland LibGuide. The Sue Fryer Ward papers join the papers of Lucille Maurer, Carol S. Petzold, and Pauline Menes,  now available to researchers in the Maryland Room of Hornbake Library. This collection would be helpful for researchers particularly interested in Maryland women in politics and in advocacy for senior citizens.


Emily Flint is a first year MLIS student in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland. She works in the State of Maryland and Historical Collections at UMD’s Special Collections and University Archives.

New exhibit celebrates 125 years of Maryland football

Calling all Terps fans! A new exhibit in Hornbake Library’s Maryland Room features a selection of photos, programs, pennants, uniforms, and more from the University Archives’ collections commemorating the football team’s 125th year.

From the team’s humble beginning in 1892 to today, our Maryland Terrapins have created many memorable moments including 11 conference championships, 27 bowl game appearances, and a National Championship title.

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The University of Maryland’s first football team, 1892

Did you know the Queen of England was an honored guest at a Maryland football game in 1957? Or that the Terps’ first bowl game ended in a tie? Can you recall Maryland’s record vs. Ivy League schools or name the player who broke the color barrier in ACC football? Do you know about Maryland’s unique connection to Under Armour?

Visit us to see the original artifacts, photos, and documents that tell the story of Maryland football.

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LGBTQ Resources in Special Collections and University Archives

Looking to explore LGBTQ history, literature, and activism? We have lot of resources in Special Collections and University Archives that will pique your interest.

University Archives Collections

Gay Student Alliance – The Gay Student Alliance (GSA) was established at the University of Maryland in the 1970s as the successor of the Student Homophile Association (SHA). This collection contains newspaper clippings and editorials from the Diamondback chronicling the campus response to the gay community during the 1970s.

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