Hello, and welcome to my blog for my LIS 6010 class.
I am a student at Wayne State University in their Library and Information
Science program. This blog will be for my Introduction to the Profession class.
I want to give a quick introduction of myself to any readers out there that
aren't in my class. My name is Chris, and I work as a Library Assistant at the
Okemos Library in Okemos, Michigan. Obtaining my MLIS is the next step on my
career path. My undergrad work is in History, and it is my passion. I hope to
continue to use both sets of skills as a historian and a librarian to Special
Collections, Local History and Archives.
Now that the basics are out of the way, let's get to the meat of the
3-5 assumptions, assertions, or beliefs that you hold about the LIS
1) You'll never get rich being a librarian.
This is a joke tossed around the library often. While I do believe this to
be mostly true, because I have looked at the job outlook and salary
expectations in journals and reviews (Some even prepared by the instructor of
this class, the dynamic Dr. Maata!), our salary range as librarians will cover
a comfortable living more often than not. For me, it's not about the money,
it's about having a job I'm excited to go to every morning when I wake up.
2) Librarians have good job satisfaction.
Looking at myself and my peers in the SLIS, we are all switching IN to
becoming librarians. We all come from very diverse backgrounds, where we were
unhappy. Now, looking at my co-workers, many of them have been at their jobs
for anywhere from 10-20 years. Not many careers can boast that type of consistency
now. Going back to the job outlooks again, I believe I read somewhere that the
field was going into a growth spurt. This is not due to job growth, but because
of so many librarians retiring. Again, I'm hard pressed to think of many
careers anymore where people actually retire after spending most of their
working years in that same profession.
3) There are more libraries out there than the general public knows about.
I have to point this out to family/friends whenever I explain to them where
I am heading with my education. Many of them only see librarians in the
Public/School/Academic setting. My own job experience so far has proven this to
be completely incorrect. Librarians are present in large corporations,
hospitals, medical information centers, museums, art galleries, government
agencies (FBI, CIA, State, Federal…). Really anywhere a large amount of
information is needed to be accessible. In another class I am taking this
semester I had to visit 3 different libraries straight away. While I was out
doing this, I was driving in Downtown Lansing where I passed the Michigan State
Police Headquarters. As I passed the building, I thought: Yup, they probably
have a librarian in there too.
4) It is not our job as librarians to censor information.
This is a definite belief of mine about the profession. I also carry this
torch as a historian as well. Things happen in our world, and for better or
worse, it is our job to inform those who seek the knowledge. We do not advocate
it in any way, but we do have a responsibility to be impartial. No information
should ever be off limits. (Unless it's classified.)
Ok, I'll get off my soapbox now. That's it for my first post. I look forward
to sharing my thoughts as the semester progresses.