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High School Students Spend Summer at HCL

SYEP Participants  
2008 Summer Youth Employment Program participants with their HCL supervisors: Front row: Beth Brainard (HCL Communications), Meredith Gallogly, Priscille Demosthene, Joyce Imafidon, Nancy Quinn (Widener). Middle row: Rhea Karabelas Lesage (Widener), Lingwei Qiu (Loeb Music), Luis Pinales, Lydia Souroufis, Damita Salmon, Kathy Rutter (HCL Technical Services), Ann Heintz (Tozzer), Monica Goncalves. Back row: Andrew Wilson (Loeb Music), Berlange Gauthier, Mikko Harvey, Lisa Carper (Tozzer), Jeffrey Yu, Nancy Hallock (HCL Technical Services).

August 19, 2008 – A dozen local high school students wrapped up their summertime HCL jobs last Friday. Hailing from Boston Latin, Cambridge Rindge and Latin, and TechBoston Academy, the students have spent the last six weeks in libraries and units throughout HCL, performing a wide array of tasks, including answering phones, staffing circulation desks, and assisting with cataloging.

It's all part of the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP), a program run by Harvard since 2001 that gives high school students an early opportunity to experience an office environment. For many of the teenagers, who work 25 to 35 hours a week, it's their first job. The program supplements the real-life work experience with weekly lunch speakers who talk to students both about Harvard and careers.

Berlange Gauthier, who will be a senior at TechBoston Academy come September, spent the summer in HCL Communications, learning web design skills and helping to maintain the HCL public website and intranet. "Working here was awesome," said Gauthier. "It was amazing and fun, and the experience showed me what it's like to work in a professional environment."

Another four students—Priscille Demosthene, Monica Goncalves, Joyce Imafidon, and Jeffrey Yu—worked in HCL Technical Services, assisting with special projects and the ordering, receipt, and cataloging of materials.

This summer also saw the return of second-year participants Vincent Duong and Damita Salmon. Duong worked in the Judaica Division in Widener Library, assisting with office tasks, and Salmon worked in HCL Collection Development again, where she handled general office duties and assisted with projects, frequently for the Spanish Division.

This summer marks HCL's fifth year of involvement with the Summer Youth Employment Program. It provides a learning experience for the students, while helping HCL units meet staffing needs when many employees are taking summer vacations. Units that take on a student worker for the summer receive special funding from the Librarian's Office.

The 2008 SYEP program participants are: Priscille Demosthene, Monica Goncalves, Jeffrey Yu, and Joyce Imafidon (supervisors Kathy Rutter, Nancy Hallock), Michelle Hien and Vincent Duong (supervisor Elizabeth Vernon), Luis Pinales (supervisors Sandi-Jo Malmon, Lingwei Qiu), Lydia Souroufis (supervisor Rhea Karabelas Lesage), Berlange Gauthier (supervisor Beth Brainard), Mikko Harvey (supervisors Ann Heintz, Lisa Carper), Damita Salmon (supervisor Nancy Quinn), and Meredith Gallogly (supervisor Andrew Wilson).