Cambridge, MA: PT Public Services Assistant, Houghton Library at Harvard University

Job Opening Title: Public Services Assistant

Employer Name: Houghton Library, Harvard University

Job Location: Cambridge, MA

Application Deadline:

Salary Range: $18.00/hour

Link to job posting:

Years of experience required: 0-2

Job Description (if URL to posting not available). Please include instructions for how to apply.: Houghton Library, Harvard’s world-class rare books and manuscripts library, is seeking a motivated Assistant to join our Public Services team. Houghton is home to the world famous and the almost entirely unknown, the ancient and the contemporary, the enduring and the ephemeral. Papyrus fragments, Civil War board games, Black Panther posters, medieval books of hours, and theatrical costume designs all share room on our shelves. The Public Services department at Houghton is responsible for assisting users in the lobby, the reading room and online, an active instruction program, and management of the library’s collections in the stacks. In addition to helping welcome researchers into the library, make collections available to researchers in our busy reading room and for our many classes, the public services assistant has the unique opportunity to learn first-hand from the inspiring collections and staff at Houghton.

Harvard will require COVID vaccination for all Harvard community members who will have any on-campus presence. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement and other policies may be found at the University’s COVID-19 Information webpage.

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions or any other characteristic protected by law.

Greet and assist researchers in the use of the library, and explain library policies and procedures.
Monitor researchers to ensure proper handling of collections in the reading room.
Provide in-person reference assistance and answer email and telephone queries.
Work in the stacks, paging and reshelving and helping to maintain order in a complex system with materials that inhabit multiple physical locations and classifications systems
Additional projects are possible, depending on interest and availability. These may include assisting with teaching, assisting with virtual and physical exhibitions, and assisting other departments with processing and cataloging of material.


A strong public services orientation and interest in developing reference skills
Demonstrated ability to meet the needs of a diverse user base in an inclusive and welcoming way
Aptitude for detail, accuracy, and efficiency; good organizational skills.
Ability to lift boxes weighing up to 25 pounds.

Strong interest in a career in archives and special collections work.
Completion of courses in archives and special collections and/or reference.
Prior library experience.

A regular schedule of 14 hours a week between the hours of M-F, 9-5.

SALARY $18.00/hour

TO APPLY Submit cover letter, resume, and references to James Capobianco, Reference Librarian,

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