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Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Assistant Archivist & Research Associate 

Position Title: Assistant Archivist & Research Associate
Department: Staley Library
Supervisor: Access Services Coordinator & Archivist
Incumbent: vacant

Position Summary:

The Assistant Archivist and Research Associate provides reference services for the Millikin University Archives and acts as an information resource with regard to the contents of archival and historical materials.  This position coordinates the collection of archival materials from other areas of the University, from alumni, and from other pertinent sources; administers the daily physical aspects of the library's University Archives, which includes special collections, archival, and historical materials such as books, manuscripts, photographs, recorded sound, and ephemera; interacts with all campus constituencies including the President's office, Alumni and Development, and Marketing, selecting and providing archival materials as needed for their use; and coordinates the Archives' outreach efforts within the University, locally, and nationally.

Position Responsibilities:

As Assistant Archivist:

  • Create and maintain the best possible storage conditions for the library's archival and historical collections.
  • Propose and implement storage and preservation measures that will improve on current practices for those collections.
  • Working closely with the University Archivist, plan for the collection of appropriate archival and historical materials from other offices, departments, and units of the University, and assure routine follow-up on this planning.
  • Work with alumni and their families to coordinate donations of Millikin-related materials.
  • Investigate and follow through on relevant grant opportunities.
  • Develop research materials related to the history of Millikin University and its associated individuals.
  • Evaluate, arrange, process, and describe archival materials according to accepted archival standards.
  • Assist researchers in person, on the phone, and/or through correspondence, with Millikin University historical research questions and projects.
  • Research and provide historical and archival information for Millikin University publications and departments.
  • Draft articles for Millikin Quarterly publication.
  • Select and edit cataloging records and call numbers for special projects, as needed.
  • Develop and create physical and online displays.
  • Coordinate the Archives' outreach efforts, including:
    • Maintaining contact with faculty to create assignments that integrate archives' and special collections materials into Millikin coursework
    • Preparing and giving presentations to on and off-campus audiences.
    • Creating and organizing archives-related special events for Millikin alumni.
    • Acting as a liaison to other Decatur-area and out of state archives and historical societies.
    • Serving as a liaison to the University's Marketing and Alumni & Development offices to assist with University marketing and fund raising efforts.
    • Keeping abreast of campus and community activities and offering archives assistance when applicable.

As Research Associate:

  • Provide guidance to appropriate resources, both print and electronic, as dictated by research questions.
  • Assess user needs and questions and refers to appropriate library staff as necessary.
  • Refer students to librarians when research questions indicate.
  • Consult regularly with librarians about research questions and interactions to review and/or determine appropriate responses.
  • Keep other reference staff apprised and aware of recurring assignments as observed at the Research Assistance desk.
  • Provide Circulation Desk assistance on occasion as needed.

As needed, some days may be scheduled to open the library and prepare it for the day's services. At such time, until relieved by other staff member:

  • Assure that optimum services are provided at the Circulation Desk.
  • Provide work assignments and supervisory guidance for student staff as needed.
  • Supervise shelving of books (including Reference), journals, and newspapers, primarily through delegation to student staff. 
  • Provide assistance to public in use of microfilm readers and photocopiers. 
  • Provide basic reference assistance to students, faculty and staff, including appropriate referrals to librarians.
  • Assure the security and proper function of the building at all times.

As a member of the library staff:

  • Attend regularly scheduled library staff meetings.
  • Within parameters of position responsibilities, propose new or changed policies and procedures to accomplish own responsibilities, related operations, and Library mission.
  • Support overall Library operations and services through projects and other duties as assigned.
  • Actively support Library colleagues, Library service goals, and College mission.   


  • A Master's Degree in Library Science, History, or other related field.
  • Work experience with, and appreciation of, archival and historical materials preferred.
  • Work experience in a library preferred, and in an academic setting desirable.
  • Some experience with providing library reference or similar information services preferred.
  • Must be meticulous and thorough with details, and show persistence and timely follow-through.
  • Computer aptitude and proficiency required, preferably including working experience with library databases and other electronic resources.
  • Must work equally well independently and collaboratively, with a clear understanding of when each is appropriate.
  • Tact, kindness and good humor in dealing with public and colleagues is crucial.
  • Good interpersonal, verbal and written skills important; service orientation essential; comfort with flexibility and change.  
Date of position description: August 9, 2000 / revised June 2010.
Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Millikin University - Decatur, IL