Over the last months of 2013 the ADS was extremely pleased to have hosted Maiju Pohjola, a data management and archiving student, from the National Archives of Finland for a two month work experience placement. Here is what Maiju had to say about her time at ADS.
The placement at ADS was a dream come true. As an archaeologist having previously studied at Newcastle University, I was familiar with the excellent work of the ADS, and as a current data management and archiving student in Finland, i wanted wanted to increase my skills in the field of digital archiving. A placement at the ADS was an ideal way to combine this ambition with my archaeological skills and gave me the opportunity to see how these two fields can be combined together to provide a free service for researchers and the general public.
I enjoyed every minute of my experience. First of all I want to thank the staff for giving me a chance to learn about digital archiving in the field of archaeology. What impressed me most was how well organized the ADS is and how the staff manage to do all the work that is needed to provide such a great resource for archaeological researchers and contractors.
During my placement I worked on file management and data migration as well as on metadata creation for the Roman Leverhulme Project and the Highways Agency. I also participated in development of guidelines, editing web pages and answering user enquiries. I also designed visual branding and developed tutorial materials. You can imagine how much I gained from all of this as a person who always thought that computers shut down immediately when I sat in front of them.
As a data management and archiving student I have learned how important the preservation and especially the management of the preserved data is. But working in an organization which concentrates completely on digital archiving, really opened my eyes about how important preservation management is. In the constantly changing digital world, this becomes essential.
I also participated to three MA modules. These were ‘Database design and implementation’, ‘working on the web’ and ‘digital publication and web technologies’. These modules were extremely useful while doing work in ADS. I gained further understanding of the tasks I was doing and why I was doing them. It also provided me an interesting overview on how data management is operated in the field of archaeology in UK and how it differs from my home country Finland. All the work I did at ADS and all the important information I gained from the modules have really provided me excellent skills I can provide for my future employers.
I want to thank the ADS staff. You made me feel welcome from the day one and you always helped me and answered my numerous questions, even when you were very busy. Thank you all for having me there.