Community Sourced Wisdom

photo of a person at a table with a tablet, smartphone, and coffee
Published: Friday, December 8, 2017 by Kate M. Spaulding

We’re almost to the end! Some of you are probably already done for the semester, while others still have a few days, so I thought this might be a good time for some alumni wisdom. You know, wise words to help us de-stress (that’s a real coping mechanism, right?).

The iSchool has a robust and enthusiastic alumni community, and many of its members have made themselves available to us through the Facebook group, Alumni Career Spotlights, and Community Profiles. Library and archives people are naturally helpful, so they’re usually happy to answer questions and give students a hand.

  • Jessica Gilbert Redman, MLIS 2016, advises, “The importance of making the most of your time at the iSchool should not be underestimated. Get involved and meet other iSchool students. Find a way to create community within your classes, make connections and support one another.” Hear, hear!
  • Scott Hargrove, a 2010 graduate, took a strategic approach to his career. “Everything I did,” says Hargrove, “was selected to develop my leadership capacity. Boards and hiring committees need to see that you are not just an effective manager, but that you are committed to the profession and a capable leader. It’s not enough to do your job well—you have to be committed to something greater.” That path worked out well for him (he’s now CEO of a library in British Columbia), and it’s worth considering for our own careers.
  • Jennifer Pickens, MLIS ’14 and assistant archivist at the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa, CA, says, “If you don’t already work in archives, start an internship or volunteering at an archive right away!” Yes! I agree wholeheartedly – my own internship strategy paid off.

Need more inspiration and advice? Check out the Community Profiles. If something you read sparks your interest, consider reaching out for an informational interview. After all, LIS is all about the exchange of ideas and open access to information!

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