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Grit, endurance and smarts

How one student is balancing a full-time job and a double major.

Dominique Byrd poses with a book her professor assigned and she picked up at the open Course Reserves area on level 3 of the library.

Balancing the demands of a full-time job and college isn’t easy. If you ask Dominique Byrd, she’ll tell you it takes a lot of hard work, tenacity and intelligence to reach her goals. Byrd is a junior at the U working toward a double major in Spanish and health, society and policy. She’s also working full-time and is a huge fan of the J. Willard Marriott Library.

“I am in the library every day that I’m on campus,” said Byrd. “I use course reserves, check out equipment from the student computing desk and I use the Writing Center.”

Instruction Librarian Adriana Parker (left) taught Dominique Byrd (right) how to effectively search databases and navigate library services during Byrd’s freshman year.

Byrd has been a library user since she came to campus as a freshman. She said she regularly checks out books and always makes it to the book sale each semester. It all started while taking a class taught by a librarian during her first semester. Byrd said that’s when she learned how to use valuable library resources such as online databases and journals.

“When I first started at the U, I took a LEAP class that was taught by librarian Adriana Parker,” said Byrd. “I now use the databases when I’m researching because I know I’m getting the best quality and I love how I can refine searching to get exactly what I need.”

Byrd said it will take her more than four years to graduate. Because of her job, she isn’t taking a full course load. But that isn’t getting in the way of her determination. She plans to pursue a career in medical administration.

“I stay optimistic because I know I’ll have a career I love in the long run,” said Byrd.