The library's new Ask a Student service will help both new and returning students navigate campus and get just-in-time help from current UCR students
September 14, 2020

On Monday, Sept. 28, the UCR Library will launch Ask a Student, a chat service to help new and returning UC Riverside students navigate campus and get timely assistance from fellow UCR students.

Ask a Student will be available Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; students can submit questions by email outside of those hours. Starting on Sept. 28, students will have three ways to access Ask a Student: via chat widgets on the library's Ask Us page, the new Ask UCR webpage, and the Keep Learning website.

Jointly managed by the library's Teaching & Learning and Research Services departments, Ask a Student will provide a place for students to connect with peers to get to the resources they need to be successful in the remote learning environment.

“One aim of this program is to support the Dean of Students’ initiative to build connections and feelings of belonging among the student body, despite our physical distance,” explained Dani Cook, the library's Director of Teaching and Learning.

Returning library student employees will staff Ask a Student, under the supervision of Teaching and Learning Services Coordinator Christopher Martone and Research Services Department Assistant Margarita Yonezawa.

“We still have Ask a Librarian for in-depth research questions,” Cook added. “And the student staff will be able to transfer questions between the services if needed.”

“The UCR Library looks forward to launching this new service to support our students. We hope it will be a useful complement to the ScottyBot, which focuses on financial aid and residential life, and help build a sense of connection for our students,” said Ann Frenkel, Deputy University Librarian. “We are grateful to our campus partners for helping us identify the need for this kind of service, and for taking the time to share details and scenarios with our student staff, so we can provide the best service possible.”

These partners include: the Dean of Students, Academic Resource Center, Basic Needs, CARE, CAPS, GSOE Academic Advising, the Ombuds, the Registrar, Residential Life, Student Life, the Student Disability Resource Center, Undergraduate Education, and The Well.