HackLibSchool is proud to feature this guest post from Ned Potter AKA thewikiman AKA one of the recently named Library Journal 2011 Movers and Shakers! In the spirit of the web allowing us to cross many types of boundaries, its important for us as students to consider growing communities and professional connections outside of our continent to continually enhance our point of view and frame of mind, which is exactly what Ned is working toward. Act locally, think globally and get involved!
Let’s make a global nework
I run a network for New Professionals in the Library and Information field, called LISNPN. And by professionals I really do mean ‘people involved with the information profession’ – this is NOT somewhere exclusively for qualified librarians.
The network has forums, how-to guides on things like getting published, public speaking, and networking, plus anonymous reviews of library schools (so far, only UK ones, but we’re looking for more) so people can make a better decision as to where to go. We also have blog posts but, frankly, HackLibSchool kicks our asses in that department and has made me think we need to try harder… But we did have a really cool interview with Buffy Hamilton, Bobbi Newman and Andy Woodworth recently – and now all of them are Movers and Shakers!
As things stand we have over 900 members, and they come from 34 different countries – the majority are from the UK because that’s where it all began. Now is the time for the network to become truly global, and that’s where you come in… We have 65 members from North America, and I want more.
I would love some library people from the US and Canada to get involved and develop this network on your side of the Atlantic. LISNPN has an informal admin team with about 10 members – we toss ideas around, discuss the direction of the network, and all that stuff. But it would be great to get some US representation on there If you fancy getting involved, please drop me an email and let me know.
My dream is that we have as many North American members as UK members, and that there will actually be LISNPN face-to-face networking events in America. The face-to-face events are amazing, because anyone can organise them. What happens is this:
1. A member (any member, doesn’t have to be a member of the admin team) decides to organise a meet-up
2. They pick a date and a venue (usually a bar…) and put the info in the Events section of the network
3. People show up, drink, have fun, plan the future of libraries and you realise that, wow, there are people out there who think just like I do!
4. New friends are made, confidence is raised, networking skills are honed, connections are formed, and everyone agrees to hold another one soon
It’s that simple, and really effective. In the UK people are starting to organise them for the night before big conferences where lots of librarians will be in the same town at the same time – but you can do them whenever.
So, fancy becoming part of this? I would really love to draw together all the new professionals, emerging leaders, ALA people, SLA people, everyone, and make LISNPN a one-stop shop for everything someone could want if they’ve entered the profession in the last decade or so. There is a need for this – and we work better together. Let’s make it happen!