Under the leadership of the Collections Management Archivist, the Preservation Technician will coordinate preservation activities for the University of Arizona Libraries’ Special Collections including preventive care and light conservation treatment of material, environmental monitoring, disaster planning and recovery, and workflow monitoring for preservation and conservation concerns in digitization processes. The Preservation Technician will also advise the Collections Services department on preservation concerns for all UA Libraries’ general collections.
The University of Arizona Libraries has had a limited preservation program to date with responsibilities distributed under a number of positions. This position will establish and ensure a consistent approach to our preservation activities. The position will supervise student employees to aid in appropriate preservation tasks. The Preservation Technician for Special Collections will join the team of librarians/archivists, curators, and student assistants, and work collaboratively with digitization staff, librarians, curators, archivists, and collections services staff.
- In collaboration with the Rare Books Librarian, Special Collections Facilities lead, and the Collections Management Archivist, recommend, develop, and prioritize treatment, preventive, and housing solutions for individual items and collections, with a focus on bound and archival material.
- Participates in the establishment of policies, procedures, and guidelines for lifecycle management of collections in all formats, especially paper based, photographic formats, and for physical storage and care of collections.
- Treat and house a broad range of rare library and archives materials, with a full range of condition concerns, using a variety of techniques and materials, and manage outsourcing of preservation and conservation treatments as needed.
- Assess treatment, handling, housing, and equipment needs for the digitization, arrangement & description, and exhibition programs. Plan and conduct enclosure projects as needed for the exhibition program.
- Provide training for staff and students on handling of materials in Special Collections and work closely with the Public Services and Instruction Librarian to provide outreach material for Special Collections users in the Reading Room.
- Coordinate environmental monitoring and integrated pest management program for Special Collections in collaboration with UAL Facilities.
- Lead the disaster preparedness and response process for Special Collections and participate in library-wide disaster preparedness planning in collaboration with Facilities and the Collection Services department.
- Maintain statistics and documentation on preservation and conservation activities and works with staff to track loaned material.
- Work closely with the Collections Management Archivist on stack maintenance and space issues.
- Serve as a point person for questions related to proper storage and handling methods as well as preservation of paper-based material in both Special Collections and in the general collection of the University of Arizona Libraries.
- May participate in outreach activities on preservation as needed.
- Supervise students working in support of preservation activities.
- The UA Libraries support the UA’s diversity and inclusiveness strategic initiatives designed to create an inclusive environment for all faculty, staff, and students. The candidate is expected to support diversity and inclusiveness efforts in the department and college.
- Other duties as assigned
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
- Understanding and knowledge of preservation best practices including environmental concerns, disaster planning and recovery, and handling and treatment of materials.
- Ability to apply and adapt knowledge and skills to a variety of tasks.
- Knowledge of library services platforms and archival inventory applications.
- Knowledge of metadata schema such as MARC, DublinCore, MODs, and EAD.
- Ability to work in a highly collaborative and inclusive environment, one that values and leverages the benefits of diverse perspectives.
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, both written and verbal.
- Positive attitude and strong demonstration of Our Values: Collaboration, Continuous Learning, Diversity, Innovation, and Integrity.
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent advanced learning attained through professional level experience.
- 3 years of relevant work experience, including at least two years working in a library, archive, or museum environment on preservation and/or conservation activities.
- Experience in the skilled creation and construction of housing for collection materials.
- Master’s degree in a relevant field such as LIS or advanced training in preservation or conservation activities.
- At least three years of experience working on preservation and/or conservation activities in a library, archives, or museum.
- Workflow and project management experience.
- Supervisory experience of student employees, interns, or staff.
- Experience with collection management, survey projects, large scale enclosure projects, grant-funded projects, and/or digitization projects.