Meet Student Worker Hannah Dunbar

By Christine Shore
Published on 12 May, 2022

CSN Libraries’ student worker Hannah Dunbar will be participating in CSN’s 50th Commencement Ceremony on May 16th, 2022 and we are so proud of her! We caught up with Hannah during her last week of finals.

When did you take your first class as a student at CSN and when did you start working for CSN Libraries?

My first class at CSN was in January of 2020, right before the pandemic hit and we shut down. I had several in-person classes, which all were moved to online. Thankfully, we were partially refunded for these classes since they were supposed to be in-person. I attended these classes at the Charleston Campus. My major is Journalism.

I actually started working at the CSN Charleston Registration Office in March of 2020, but that lasted only for two weeks because of the shutdown. All CSN campuses opened back up in the fall of 2020 and I applied to the CSN libraries for work-study. I applied to Charleston at first, but they could not work with my schedule. I then applied to Henderson and Maggie Harris was happy to take me. I started working at the CSN Henderson Campus Library in September of 2020 and worked there until the spring of 2021.

During the summer of 2021, the Henderson Campus Library closed due to construction. I could no longer work there so I had to transfer to the Charleston Campus Library. I started at that one in June 2021 and have been working at Charleston until now. My last day is May 12th.

Graduating from CSN usually takes hard work, perseverance and sacrifice. Describe your journey at CSN and some obstacles you overcame.

Attending school during the pandemic was definitely a bit difficult and lonely. It is much harder to make friends in online classes than it is in in-person classes. I managed to prevail. At first, I spent too much money on textbooks and later found that you can rent them for much cheaper. I came to find that I preferred digital textbooks if possible since it was easier to access, especially if we did not use the book too much. In addition, you do not have to worry about returning it since it’s digital.

The hardest class was honestly Math 120E. I have never been good at math, especially in high school as a special education student. I never got the chance to take high school algebra. I was in an IEP math course and had to worry about passing the proficiencies in order to graduate high school. I was supposed to be placed in algebra, but that didn’t happen. So in college, I had to learn new things as well as take advantage of both online tutoring and in-person tutoring. This was the one class that I had to wait till it was in-person. I attempted to do Math 95 online, but that was too difficult for me. I received a D in the 95 Class.

I was worried that I wouldn’t pass Math 120 E, but I did. I passed with a B and all my hard work paid off. I had to study a lot and work even harder than the rest of my peers. I struggle with ADHD so it can be difficult for me to focus on a subject that I don’t like. The rest of my classes were a breeze.

How did working at CSN Libraries help you achieve your academic, personal or professional goals?

Professionally, I was able to learn a vast variety of skillsets that I can use for potential future jobs. I learned the Library of Congress Classification System, which is how most academic libraries organize their books. I learned how to answer the phones and assist patrons in their needs.

Academically, I was able to take advantage of the benefits as both a student and employee. When it was slow, I was able to do assignments at the desk. I also got to know the librarians personally and they were able to help me with some assignments and find an internship as well.

What are your plans after graduation?

After I graduate, I am transferring to UNLV in the fall of 2022 to get my bachelor’s degree in Journalism. For the summer, I plan to find a job to further improve my skills.

Do you have any advice for students who are just starting out at CSN?

Take advantage of the college library. They offer a huge variety of services. Also, make sure you check the reserve section because they might have a textbook that you need for a class. Instead of paying a lot of money for a textbook, you can use it for free at the library and take some pictures or scan some pages. Most of the textbooks I have bought or rented, I hardly ever used. I did not find out about this until I started working at the library and I wish I knew then. It’s always nice to save money, especially with how expensive some textbooks cost. The librarians can also help you with essays and offer a lot of advice. The library is what helped me get through most of my toughest obstacles.