The path to here

On Monday, November 14, 2016, I started my third position at the York County Library. I first came on in 2012 as a part time circulation assistant, and then worked three years in the Outreach department as a bookmobile assistant. August 2016 I left for a new non-library job that promised more pay and opportunity to grow…

And now I’m back at the library! This time I will be a part time reference assistant, working on the second floor instead of the central circulation desk or tucked in the back near the garage/ on a large 28-foot long converted Bluebird named Camilla.

During my time as a bookmobile assistant, I applied for the MLIS program at USC Columbia. Outreach work inspired me to pursue a career in the library field for a few reasons:

  1. Let’s be honest up front, with an MLIS you can command a higher salary. If this is where I want to work, I’m going to need to make more money over time without relying solely on seniority. And during the time I do serve as a librarian…
  2. I want to be able to affect change in service and policy. I came into the position without formal training and many of my coworkers had years of experience, but no degree. On the job, I sought out the reasoning behind our services, why we did what we did, and, always, how can we improve staff and patron experiences. Graduate school seemed to be the answer.
  3. Knowing me, this would help me solidify my identity. People say “do what you love”. But when you battle with bouts of depression and anxiety on a regular basis, it can be difficult to remember who you are. When the activities and aspects of life that once defined you lose their luster or seem like burdens, it is difficult to remember who you are, why you started, or why any of this matters. For me, working in a library has been a defining moment that hasn’t lost its purpose or place in my life. I want to keep that feeling alive and investing effort into my studies sustains that energy and, therefore, me.

Okay, deep breath, that last paragraph was a doozy, right?

Onward, this blog will be personal observations of how my work and school studies overlap, lists of materials I have consumed, and a collection of amusing photographs/comics/antics.


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