26/04/2013 § Leave a Comment
Hello, Everybody! Guess what? HLS is super-excited to announce that we’ve been chosen to lead another Conversation Starter at ALA annual! Last year, our #HLSConvo in Anaheim drew a roomful of passionate, engaged librarians and library students together to share information across the pre- and post-graduation lines. This year, we’re focusing on skills: Transferrable skills that will help us as we get our first jobs and throughout our careers.
Conversation Starters are one hour long, and are designed to spark questions and get people talking long after the hour concludes. This year, here’s what we’ll be focusing on:
LIS education is preparing us, or claiming to prepare us, for many, many things beyond “working in a library”–how do we turn those skills into useful talents as we enter our chosen profession? This conversation starter hopes to bring together students and professionals to get them talking in a moderated forum about such questions as:
- HackLibrarySchool is all about self-determination, “hacking” our programs and approaches to make the degree be exactly what we want it to be. How can we apply the same attitude to our work (especially if we aren’t in positions that support shaking things up)?
- Is there a “gap” between perceptions of LIS recent graduates and veterans of the profession?
- How can we bridge it?
- What concrete actions can we take to make it easier on everyone when new graduates join established institutions?
We’ll be talking on Sunday, June 30th, at 1:30 pm, but there’s no harm in getting the conversation started early! If you’d like to weigh in, let us know in the comments, or on Twitter with the #HLSConvo hashtag. Be on the lookout for our annual Hack ALA series, too! June will be here before we know it.
Hope to see you all in Chicago!
24/04/2013 § 7 Comments
I recently received an ALA Store catalog in the mail and was happily flipping through the pages, considering whether or not I should order my own supply of Love My Library buttons, when I stumbled across this t-shirt:
It has pictures of endangered animals (a giant panda, a mountain gorilla, a black rhino) and then the library symbol, the point being that libraries are endangered. I’m sorry to say it but something about this t-shirt does not sit well with me. It rings a little alarmist and reminds me of the Huffington Post “Libraries in Crisis” page which Turner Masland covered in an excellent Hack Library School post called HuffPo: Helping or Hurting?.
22/04/2013 § 1 Comment
The end of another academic year is upon us. Here at Syracuse, we have a little more than two weeks left in the semester, and, as usual, that means that things are coming together in a perfect storm of final projects, presentations, and other end-of-semester tasks. I’ve been running around like a crazy person, trying to finish projects, schedule webinars, attend campus events, and see classmates who will soon be graduating or leaving for the summer.
All of this end-of-semester craziness has sent me into a serious slump. I find myself lacking the motivation to work on projects, putting off routine schoolwork until the last minute, and avoiding anything that requires making a decision. Recently I’ve had to resist the urge to curl into a ball and cry because of the pressure to just do all the things.
Despite all of my wishful thinking, though, these things aren’t going to disappear. Projects need to be finished, classes require participation, and I still want to do what I can to become a great librarian, even in the midst of my slump. So how can we make it to the end of the semester without suffering a nervous breakdown? Here are some thoughts: « Read the rest of this entry »
19/04/2013 § 9 Comments
Last week, I submitted my final portfolio and had it approved by my advisor. So that’s it – I’m officially graduating in May. Naturally, this is super exciting, but I’m also kind of surprised. Sitting right next to my much-anticipated relief is a big helping of worry and, dare I say it, mixed feelings.
Yes, I’m thrilled to have my degree, and I’m over the moon that my portfolio is done (and done well, if I do say so myself). But mostly, I feel anxious and cut adrift. If I’m honest with myself, it’s because there are no more projects and papers standing between reality and me. It’s time to get a job. In a discouraging economy. Of course, I saw this coming, but I kept my view hazy, even as I researched different career paths. So, now that reality has finally arrived, how does a freshly minted graduate go about finding her first LIS job?
18/04/2013 § 8 Comments
We are very happy to announce our first intern! While it was challenging to select just one person out of so many qualified and passionate candidates, ultimately Syracuse University student Mallory Arents stood out as the best fit for the role.
Right now Mallory is working with EveryLibrary founder John Chrastka to determine a project to focus on over the course of the internship. After the internship officially starts, she’ll be posting here on Hack Library School about her experience—but since that may not be for a while we wanted to give readers an initial introduction to Mallory. Please help us in welcoming her!
Mallory, in her own words
I am a graduate student pursuing a Masters of Library and Information Science at Syracuse University. In past lives, I’ve been an English teacher in South Korea, a bartender in Florida, and director of social media in Connecticut. Passionate about education, relationships, and technology, I was led, almost naturally, to librarianship.
I believe that information and knowledge should be readily accessible to all. While my time at Syracuse University’s iSchool has certainly provided me with a breadth of knowledge and experience, the most valuable thing I’ve taken away is a passion for library advocacy. I’m known among my peers as being opinionated and loud, and I’m unafraid to speak my mind and argue in favor of our profession, institutions, and fair and equal access to information. On Tuesday, March 5th, I traveled to Albany, NY, to share these views with state legislators. As a result of this experience, I was offered a position on CLRC’s (Central New York Library Resources Council) Committee on Legislative Action. Furthermore, I recently accepted a two-year position with ALA’s Committee on Library Advocacy.
I view libraries as being the great democratic-equalizer. No matter your socio-economic status, what you look like, or where you come from, they are there for you, whether you seek a book, a database, an internet connection, or a quiet nook. This will never stop being relevant or meaningful.
The EveryLibrary/Hack Library School internship is a unique opportunity which seems to directly address my interests and background experience. I hope to focus my internship on legislative authority for library districts, voter attitudes about libraries, or the creation of campaign tools.
17/04/2013 § 7 Comments
As it’s National Library Week, I’ve been thinking a great deal about the things that unite us. Library education is meant to launch all of us into successful careers in the information world, and to provide a foundation upon which we can build.
Certainly, we are not rubber-stamped automata with identical skill sets. Our interests and electives can and do vary a great deal from student to student, from librarian to librarian. Still, something I have noticed in conversations with librarians and library students is a lack of common readings. We do not seem to have a central “canon,” as such, and while our field may be constantly influenced by related disciplines, librarianship has a long history of thought that we could all benefit by reading. Rather than make up an “authoritative list” on my own, though, I wanted to bring in as many perspectives as possible. I hope that this post will prompt a conversation, and later perhaps prompt action as curricula are redesigned throughout the country.
Three nominations, to get you started: « Read the rest of this entry »
10/04/2013 § Leave a Comment
With my final semester in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Tennessee wrapping up and the graduation ceremony quickly approaching, I wanted to take the opportunity of today’s post to say a farewell to all the fine readers of Hack Library School. It’s been a fun adventure and a great experience. I was honored to be chosen to be among the superb writers at HLS and am excited that we have excellent writers to continue the tradition. I’ve made great friends, and I look forward to being colleagues with all of you. Thank you for all your thoughtful comments on my posts. Writing these posts has been a great experience as it allowed me to think through my beliefs on various topics and develop a clear articulation of them. HLS was a big help to me in my early days in grad school, so I hope my posts have helped and encouraged you as those before me did for me.
I now move into my future career. As of right now, I do not have a job lined up, but it won’t be too long. I hope to get to meet many of you at conferences and symposia and maybe even collaborate on a project in the future.
So long, friends!