eNews Edition: Spring 2018
Part of the Oviatt Library eNews Spotlight on Student Assistants
Tell us about yourself. Who is Sam Thacker?
I’m a Web Assistant III for the Library Systems Group. I’m finishing up my third/junior year as a Computer Science major and Philosophy minor. Also on campus, I am the President of CSUN's Anime Club and an avid reader, and I run my own business doing web development for a wide array of clients (I'm very busy!). I began teaching myself to program when I was seven years old, and am constantly learning new things. Outside of my academic interests, I have also been a professional actor/singer/dancer for much of my life, and continue to train and to perform onscreen and onstage.
How does the Oviatt Library support your creative projects?
Last semester in my Contemporary Literature class, my group was assigned the short story “Optimists” by Richard Ford. Not only was I able to check out the Rock Springs story collection that it was originally published in, I was able to use that book to analytically contrast our assigned story to “Communist,” another story in the collection. Having the Oviatt at my disposal allowed me to delve my thematic analysis of the piece into more depth, looking at how Ford told two similar stories so differently. Outside of class, the Library also helps me in my personal research on connecting Computer Science and Philosophy of Mind outside of AI – primarily looking at (i) how, if at all, we can discern and differentiate the internal workings of a computer and the perceptions of the human mind, and (ii) what the impact of the Internet and digital social media is upon our internal mental identities, which I hope to integrate into a future Masters of Computer Science thesis.
What’s your favorite place in the Library?
Well, besides my workstation in Library Administration, I have a little spot I always go to on the third floor that’s somewhat isolated, which allows me to work in general quiet and focus on what I’m doing without interruption. Plus, it’s near a power outlet – and you know access to those can get rare when it’s crunch time for exams!
What advice would you give to a new CSUN student about the Oviatt Library’s resources?
Call me biased since I work on the Library website, but there are a plethora of easily accessible online resources at your disposal! From LibGuides on practically any topic you can think of – including Research Strategies, which is very helpful with a paper from start to finish – to being able to reserve a quiet individual or group study room in the Library. Take some time to explore the Library website and the various options it offers, so you know exactly where to go if you need some quick assistance!