Meet Student Employee Scholarship Recipient Robert Smith


Ohio State student Robert Smith smiles at the camera and is wearing glasses, a white button down, red tie and black suit jacket.

In his scholarship application essay, Robert Smith shared, “Working in the University Libraries has been one of the most formative chapters in my journey of self‐discovery and professional development. Balancing my responsibilities as a third‐year engineering student with my role as one of the student IT workers has been a challenging yet rewarding experience.”

As a third-year engineering student and student employee with The Ohio State University Libraries IT team, Robert assisted in a critical hardware migration project that helped him understand the power of teamwork and the importance of collective effort and individual growth. Robert explained that with a tight deadline in place, the success of the project was dependent on the team’s conscious synchronization and mutual support.

During the project, the team worked through unexpected problems that threatened the ability to meet their deadline. “Through this experience, I witnessed the importance of communication and capitalizing on each other's strengths. I learned that every team member had something unique to contribute, and by sharing our knowledge, we were able to overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges. The beauty of working together was not just in completing the job, but in how we supported and celebrated each other along the way,” Robert said.

Learn more about Robert, one of 10 recipients of the 2024 University Libraries Student Employee Scholarship, in this interview.

Tell us a bit about yourself!

My name is Rob, and I am a rising senior biomedical engineering student. I hope to attend dental school after graduating. In my free time, I enjoy rock climbing and spending time with my friends

What drew you to working with University Libraries as a Student Employee?

After completing my freshman year, I realized that I wanted to contribute to the Buckeye community by working on campus. The libraries played a crucial role in my academic success during my freshman year, so applying to become a student employee at the university libraries was an obvious choice.

What’s something you’ve learned by working for University Libraries? 

I have learned that teamwork is essential in all aspects of life through this job. It has taught me to depend on and trust my peers, and the benefits of this mindset extend to my daily life.

How will this scholarship impact your time as a student at Ohio State?

Like any college student, I face financial challenges, so I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity.

What would you say to other students who are considering working for University Libraries?

I highly recommend it! Having an employer and peers who understand and appreciate the academic demands makes life much easier as a student. Through this job, I have met some of my closest friends, and I guarantee that you will also have the opportunity to meet amazing people.