Future Plans and Farewells!

Yesterday we said ‘hello’ to our new writers…but today we need to wish our graduating staff a fond farewell! We asked them to share with us some highlights from their final semester, their job searches, or any other cool and exciting things that they’re looking forward to now that they’ve finished up library school. For the rest of us who are still in the trenches, we hope this gives you a much-needed glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel!

Lauren Bourdages

I’ve been on the hunt for a librarian job now since last summer. I’m in a very stable and permanent work situation right now which means I can only give up my current role for a permanent role. I’m not in a position, personally or professionally, to take on a contract role.I’m also geographically limited to within a narrow area around my current geographic location because it’s not in a great place for long distance commuting and I can’t move to a new location because I’m currently caregiving for my mum who lives with me and who is in recovery so we can’t really move from her current healthcare team! This makes job searching a lot tougher! The goal is to get into a College or Academic Library in one of a few areas, copyright, scholarly communications, or open education and/or instruction. I’ve also been looking at management roles in user services, and library adjacent jobs like instructional design.

The short term professional plan right now is convincing my current place of work to support me in doing SPARC’s Open Education Leadership Program so I can bring open education programming to the next level at our institution. I’m also doing some courses through Library Juice Academy sporadically this year thanks to a professional development scholarship I got awarded by my library school. On a personal front I’m going on a big, important trip in June! I’m getting married in Vegas and then going to Disneyland for a honeymoon/graduation celebration. Originally we were going to head to Vegas via Edmonton for my graduation but then the announcement for the ceremony date got pushed back and since we couldn’t wait anymore on planning the wedding and the Disney trip unfortunately I’ll be skipping my graduation, because it’s at the wrong end of June!

Paige Szmodis

Thanks to my reduced course load during my last semester at Simmons, I was fortunate to have gotten a full-time job a few months before I graduated. In March, I started as a Reference Librarian and Cataloger at a public library in the greater Philadelphia area. While I hadn’t exactly pictured myself in a public library or reference position while I was in school, I am really enjoying the wide variety of job responsibilities I get to experience on a daily basis, from cataloging to collection development to helping patrons. Although I did have several internships while in grad school, I never worked in a public library before—but I still managed to get a professional librarian position, so let it be known that it really can be done! Now that I’ve graduated, I hope to spend more time exploring trails, museums, bookstores, and places to eat around my new place in Philly.

Erika Whinihan

While finishing up my spring quarter and Capstone project along with my regular full-time job, I’ve managed to apply for several LIS-related positions during the last month and have even had a couple interviews. The fact that I am making a mid-career pivot and applying for positions that are a total-180 from my current work and have been asked for even one interview feels like an accomplishment itself. A few years ago I never thought actually working in the LIS field would be possible. This last quarter I did an independent study project on ontologies and have really found a passion for this area and so right now my focus has been on applying for Ontology positions. I am also interested in digital and research librarianship as well. I’m trying to enjoy the process of job searching and maintain some level of confidence as I navigate this new world. If a new position doesn’t come my way this summer, that is okay with me too. I’ll enjoy time with my family and working on my blackout Bingo card for the Seattle Arts and Lectures/Seattle Public Library book bingo! My favorite summer pastime activity!

Photo by Baim Hanif on Unsplash

Categories: Hellos & Goodbyes

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