SJSU iSchool Director Shares News and Inspiration During the Fall 2016 Director’s Forum

iStudent Blog

Published: October 5, 2016

 Every semester, the SJSU School of Information Director Dr. Sandra Hirsh gives a presentation to update students on news and happenings within the iSchool, the San José State University as a whole, and to share her tips for success.

If you have never listened to one of Hirsh’s Director’s Forums, I highly recommend it—not just for the information shared but because our iSchool Director is such a warm, welcoming and encouraging person. Be sure to check the dates at the bottom of this post for upcoming conferences where Hirsh and other awesome iSchool faculty members will be available to meet and talk with you about all things library and information, or something completely different and fascinating to you both. As you know, information professionals are fascinating people.

University and iSchool News and Opportunities
During this fall semester 2016 Director’s forum Hirsh discussed some changes in leadership at the university including the welcoming of the new SJSU President Mary Papazian and the new Library Dean Tracy Elliot. Hirsh also shared the exciting news that the School of Information is currently recruiting for a new tenure track professor of Organizational Management and Behavior in Information Professions, which translates into someone who will manage the Info 204 content, among other responsibilities. In further iSchool news, our very own Dr. Anthony Bernier and Dr. Chris Hagar were both promoted.

In student news, Hirsh highlighted the amazing experience of being published in the iSchool’s very own Student Research Journal and emphasized the importance of reading the research of one’s peers. This blog post will tell you more about the publishing and review process as well as the esteem of being published in a peer-reviewed journal like the SRJ. Hirsh also highlighted the new and popular iSchool Swag Store. This iStudent blog post highlights some of the available products as well as the iSchool who’s who of who’s wearing what. Hirsh also shared the news that she is putting together a task force of student leaders (stay tuned for how you can become one!) to plan the 2017 convocation.

In student diversity news, the iSchool tied for first for the most ALA Spectrum Scholarship award-winners. The California Library Association (CLA) as well as the Special Library Association (SLA) also awarded iSchool students with scholarships. Not leaving the faculty out of the awards received, Hirsh mentioned a number of grants received by Dr. Kristen Rebemann, Dr. Hagar, Dr. Tonia San Nicolas-Rocca, Dr. Lili Luo, Dr. Lisa Daulby and Ruth Barefoot.

Mark Your Calendar and Get Involved
There are a slew of conferences coming up this fall and in early 2017 including the always popular and interesting Library 2.016 conference which you can attend while in your living room – it’s free and completely online! The year’s final conference will be on October 6, 2016 and entitled “Libraries of the Future.” Previous conferences this year were “Privacy in the Digital Age” and “Library as Classroom.” The October conference will also have recordings available and a post here on the iSchool blog in the next few weeks.

Worldwide conference dates to take note of and put on your calendar include:

If you’re planning on attending the ALA conference in Chicago in June 2017, then you might consider a new 1-unit course being offered by Patty Wong. Info 298 Professional Socialization and Trendspotting will require conference attendance and increase your network skills by the boatload… or at least by a lot.

Tips for Success from Your Highly Successful Director
Take advantage of as many of the school’s Career Development resources as possible. Start with the Career Development tab at the top of the iSchool’s website and spend some serious time with all the submenus and pages. The latest Emerging Trends Career Report  just came out, so take a look at what careers are hot, what job descriptions employers are posting and figure out your best career move. Career liaison Jill Klees is always happy to help with resume or CV questions and advice and the Alumni Career Spotlights are a great way to explore career fields by networking with previous iSchool students who are out working in the information field.Follow the Career Blog for quick advice and information, delivered twice a week and helpful at any point in your grad school career – and beyond!

Other great iSchool resources include: 

Hirsh reminded students to, “Stay informed!” Follow the Career Blog, the iStudent Blog (right here, my friends), and Dr. Linda Main’s iSchool Curriculum Blog. Attend career webcasts and listen to recordings of past presentations. A few of those recordings are highlighted on this blog and will likely be covered in the future, so stay tuned.

Every semester Hirsh stresses the importance of doing an internship. Many times, internships can lead directly or indirectly to a job. It’s an opportunity to stretch your skills and network. “Do an internship,” she said, “even if you’re already working in an information setting; it gives you the chance to apply your skills in a different way or try out an area of employment, build your resume and add to your network of professional contacts.”

Consider the skills you are building during your coursework and try something new, especially courses in technology because the skills you use are universal. Network, network and network—it is never too early or too late to start. Join the rich and engaging conversations on social media too, including Twitter and Facebook. Hirsh’s advice to get involved is motivated by one single admonition, “It really is not enough to do just your coursework.” That is the truth. Not only is it not enough, it’s just plain not as much fun. Learn more and join in the adventure!

For further reading, check out:
Internships Make an Impact on Your Coursework, Your Resume and Your Life

A Day in the Life of Dr. Sandra Hirsh– Inspiration from iSchool Leadership

One Success Leads to Another– A Letter from Alumna Kate Dillon