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[BKARTS] Full-time position at Rare Book School

Rare Book School (RBS) is currently seeking a full-time Administrator. For more information about RBS, see


RBS currently has a full-time staff of five persons (four plus the position being advertised): Director (Terry Belanger), Assistant Director and Curator of Collections (Barbara Heritage), Program Director (Ryan Roth), and Assistant to the Director (Kenneth Giese). About half of the Administrator's time is spent maintaining the school's financial and other records, using QuickBooks and Access. The other half of the Administrator's time is spent working with other full-time staff members on the school's programmatic activities, primarily (though not only) the running of about 30 five-day, non-credit, continuing education courses on book history subjects, taught by a distinguished faculty of experts to rare book and special collections librarians, academics, antiquarian book collectors, bookbinders and conservators, book collectors, and others interested in rare books and the history of the book. The average student is about 40 years old, but they are sometimes under 20 and occasionally over 70; almost all of them share a passion for books and their history.

For the Administrator, we are looking for someone with a similar passion for books and book history. The person hired must be able to demonstrate that he or she:

- has had experience maintaining financial records
- has had previous contact with books and their history, and has an interest in pursuing further education in this area
- has superior oral and written communication skills
- enjoys detail-oriented work and maintaining high levels of accuracy
- can work independently and with others to organize information and solve problems in rigorous, fast-paced organization with low tolerance for inaccuracy and inefficiency

A high comfort level with computer software is essential. A general knowledge of bookkeeping functions and principles is necessary, as is proficiency in database and spreadsheet software; an acquaintance with website maintenance and development would be useful. Ideally, we will hire someone who has already attended at least one RBS course (and who thus has a basic understanding of how the school functions), and/or who can demonstrate a serious interest in the history of the book, rare books, and related subjects; we expect the successful candidate for the position to have at least a bachelor's degree in the liberal arts.

The Administrator must be capable of performing efficiently and accurately in a demanding, fast-paced, and enormously stimulating environment. The position does not have much formally to do with the contemporary books arts - the school's emphasis is on book history -- but RBS has a good working collection of printing equipment and supporting printing-house furniture, including a Vandercook SP15, a full-size reproduction of a common press, and a Washington-style Wesel flatbed platen press. The book arts are lively in Charlottesville.

This is a classified University of Virginia position, with full UVa benefits. The salary, set by UVa's human resources office, is currently in the high $30s. This figure is somewhat misleading, however, since there are a number of financial benefits to the position provided by RBS itself, including subsidized parking, subsidized lunches and other meals, free annual tuition to an RBS course, and a $3,000 annual travel budget (we expect the incumbent to attend national conferences and suchlike as a working professional in the field). The person who has just left this job (for another in the UVa neighborhood) estimated that in real money her annual salary here equaled about $45,000.

Persons wishing to know more about the position (or to express an interest in applying for it) should be in touch with RBS's Assistant Director, Barbara Heritage (email barbara.heritage@xxxxxxxxxxxx).

The formal job posting is mounted on UVa's HR website (http://www.hrs.virginia.edu/): scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the blue "View All Staff Jobs" button. Scroll down to the bottom of the new page that comes up and click on the red "Staff Jobs" button. The job is posted about five screens down, under the date 01-23-08.

Terry Belanger
University Professor, Honorary Curator of Special Collections
Director, Rare Book School : University of Virginia
Rare Book School : PO 400103 : Charlottesville, VA 22904-4103
Email belanger@xxxxxxxxxxxx : Phone 434-924-8851 : Fax 434-924-8824
URL <http://www.rarebookschool.org>

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This page last changed: March 10, 2008