Ever wonder what the faculty and staff at the Pollak Library are working on? The “Faculty & Staff Spotlight” blog column aims to highlight some of the exciting projects we are working on, and profile our talented library team.
This month, we introduce Jon Cornforth, the Library’s First Year Experience Librarian.
What is your name and title?
Jon Cornforth – First Year Experience Librarian
In what section or unit of the Pollak Library do you work?
My title in the library is brand new! I work in the Instruction & Information Unit with a bunch of other amazing librarians.
What is your job in a nutshell?
I am in charge of library programming for first-year students. This includes helping oversee the Information Desk in the new first floor of the library’s south wing, along with our amazing group of Peer Consultants. The peers are library student employees who will be working with me and their supervisor Donna Rader as we implement activities for first-year students.
What are you working on right now?
Currently I am working on a few first-year related projects. First, I am developing a self-guided digital mobile tour students can follow on their devices to become familiar with the spaces, resources, and services in the library. Second, I am developing a high-impact practice: Peer Consultant-led, drop-in library workshops available to any interested student and intended to foster a sense of belonging and understanding of the library. Lastly, the Peer Consultants have diverse backgrounds, interests, and academic goals, spread across different majors. We want to connect these talented and knowledgeable employees with first-year students as part of a high-impact practice mentorship program.
How long have you been at the Pollak Library?
I started here as an Interlibrary Loan student employee in summer, 2005. I became a staff member in Circulation in 2008, then became a librarian in 2015 upon completing my library science degree.
Have you held any other jobs with Cal State Fullerton?
Nope…Just in the library!
What has changed since you started at the Pollak Library?
A lot has changed, but one thing I’m really excited about is the new first floor of the south wing! When I started, there was an old computer lab near the previous service desks and copy machines. Whether they are studying or just hanging out with friends, it’s exciting now to see students utilizing the new space and furniture.
I have always been impressed by the innovative ways we support the information needs of the campus community. Student success has steered and will continue to steer the work we do here. This will of course continue as the renovation process moves along.
Do you have a favorite accomplishment at the Pollak Library?
I am really proud of our current group of Peer Consultants. They’re a great group of students with great ideas and a willingness to help others. Together, we strive to help first-year and any-year students, faculty, staff, and any library visitors who walk through the doors.
What are your passions or interests outside of work?
I enjoy reading, listening to music, and watching movies. Also, I am very passionate about getting 100% completion of Super Mario Odyssey on the Nintendo Switch. My gaming skills have weakened over time, so I’ll let you know when that happens, probably years from now lol.
What is the last book you read, or the last book you loved?
I love oysters, so I couldn’t help but pick up a book I noticed on the library’s new book display called Oyster: A Global History by Carolyn Tillie.
What is a website, database or digital tool that you recently discovered and recommend?
Attention word nerds: The library provides access to Oxford English Dictionary online, the “definitive record of the English language.” It’s an invaluable resource that helps researchers trace the development of words. Individuals have to pay about 30 dollars a month for access. Like all our databases, current students, faculty, and staff get access for free. Check it out!