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Most people think I’m very outgoing, sociable, etc., (for example, I usually look like the person in the left – all smiles, even without a delicious lobster in my hand!) but it actually takes a lot for me to get to that point. I do get there, but I definitely need to warm up first. And then I enthusiastically embrace opportunities to get to know people, make them feel comfortable, and to connect them to others with similar interests.
But it’s the first step that’s often the hardest; the first time you approach someone, introduce yourself, and break the ice. This is fun to do at conferences, and easy if you recognize someone’s name from a listserv or because you’ve read their books/articles, etc. and can use those connections. But sometimes it’s not quite as easy; I’ve been attending the same church for the past several months but I haven’t established any consistent friendships because I haven’t been proactive about it, and this has been very hard for me because having a spiritual community is essential to my well-being. But this past Sunday, I attended the church’s Operations Center Open House and took a group tour of the new facilities. Later, a girl who was in my tour group came up to me and introduced herself. It just about made my day!
So where am I going with this? I don’t know who my readers are, but I’d like to. Few of you leave comments or questions or email me, so I’m not sure how helpful my website is to you or the nature of your interest in my pages and posts. So if you feel comfortable (and if you don’t want to, that’s fine too!), I’m breaking the ice; please comment when you read something interesting, or email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and introduce yourself. I don’t bite, although I might emit a few spark*s of excitement 🙂
Now, I try not to set too much store by US News and World Report rankings except of course, when they announce that the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois is ranked #1 in the entire country (which, of course, means in the entire universe). So who am I to argue that they recently announced that librarianship is one of the best careers of 2009? 🙂
Overview. Forget about that image of librarians as a mousy bookworms. More and more of today’s librarians must be clever interrogators, helping the patron to reframe their question more usefully. Librarians then become high-tech information sleuths, helping patrons plumb the oceans of information available in books and digital records, often starting with a clever Google search but frequently going well beyond.
Read the rest of the article here. To be fair, the description is a little glamoratized (“Librarians may also go on shopping sprees, deciding which books and online resources to buy. They may even get to put on performances, like children’s puppet shows, and run other programs, like book discussion groups for elders.” — as if those are *easy* tasks?! We have whole courses devoted to collection development, online databases, children’s services, storytelling, and running book discussion groups!)
Also, here’s proof that you can’t *really* trust US News and World Report rankings: they say being a professor is one of the most overrated careers 😦
To get tenure, which takes seven years, one typically must, in addition to a carrying full teaching load and advising students, publish original research, serve on committees, and perform other university service. That means long hours and not even close to getting the summers off.
It’s hard work, but someone’s got to do it. Might as well be someone who loves what they do enough to survive 5+ years of graduate school :o)