My name is Victoria Swindle and I was a summer intern for the St. Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Theological Library, through the Office of Youth Ministry Internship Program. I am currently a senior at the University of Pittsburgh studying toward a Bachelor’s Degree in Information Science and a minor in Museum Studies. Completing an internship in a field of study of what you are currently studying in school is starting to become a popular trend and necessary in education. I saw this summer as an opportunity to help people have an easier way of getting to the information and rich history of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Due to the safety precautions and shut down in New Jersey because of Covid-19, my internship was slightly adjusted and I was able to complete some tasks as part of “Intern-at-Home”. During the month of June, I researched about the current periodicals the library has in the collection remotely from my home in Pittsburgh. After analyzing the safety of working physically at the St. Sophia Seminary Library I was fortunate to start on site at the end of June and early July.
During my time I had Dobrodijka Oksana Pasakas as a spectacular mentor and supervisor. We were able to discuss the importance of getting the information and resources the library has to offer out to the students, faculty, and the faithful. One of my assignments was to organize and digitize both the Ukrainian Orthodox Word and the UOL Bulletin in the Library’s collection. By having this new format of the publications, the stories that are told can now have a new life. After analyzing the Library’s collection, I noticed that the library is missing a number of physical copies of the UOL Bulletin. If you or someone you know has copies of the Bulletin and would like to donate them to the Library’s Collection, please download the donation form on the St. Sophia Library website or contact Librarian Dobrodijka Oksana Pasakas at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I will always remember this learning experience I had at the St. Sophia Seminary Library. When scanning the editions of the Ukrainian Orthodox Word and the UOL Bulletin, I was thinking about the importance of my work. These publications are records of how the Ukrainian Orthodox Church developed and how the publications were a way of communication to the faithful. It was and still is a way that people knew what was going on in the numerous churches all around the United States.
I want to thank His Eminence Metropolitan Antony and His Eminence Archbishop Daniel for giving me the blessing to do this work at the Library. I also want to thank Librarian Dobrodijka Oksana Pasakas along with the staff of Consistory for allowing me this wonderful opportunity. I encourage any high school or college student to reach out to The Office of Youth & Young Adult Ministry, because this internship was a fantastic way to give back to Christ's church and gaining valuable skills.