This article marks the end of my MLIS program, and it will be the final article that I will write for Hack Library School as an MLIS candidate. If you […]
Open education is a growing trend in higher education and academic libraries play a big role in the field; usually by overseeing open educational resource (OER) programs and cataloging and […]
In one of my first posts, I wrote about why I decided to go to library school immediately after I graduated with my bachelor’s degree. In that article, I focused […]
I think it is safe to say that it is no surprise that our current job market is incredibly precarious, and has been for a while, our current pandemic […]
When one of us screws up and we do nothing, that makes us all look bad. And no, backpedaling doesn’t help.
On July 4th, a story broke about UWM School of Information Studies Senior Lecturer Betsy Schoeller and the heinous comment she made about the murder of Specialist Vanessa Guillen on […]
Choosing to be civilly engaged has never been easier. As citizens, we are bombarded with 24-hour news through every means of device: our phones, computers, televisions, and, if you are […]
Working on the reference desk at a public library, I answer patrons’ questions every day. As many of you may know, these questions vary from finding a book, to more […]
This month, I was inspired by my fellow HLS contributors, Lauren, Aubrey, Kerri, Alyssa, and Conrrado, to attempt to critically examine the ways in which anti-Black racism and other prejudices […]
In the fall of 2010, Safiya Umoja Noble was searching the internet; looking for things that may interest her stepdaughter and nieces. However, when she Googled the phrase “black girls,” […]
It’s been a tiring end to the academic year. The University of Washington’s quarter system means that final assignments were due last week. But, after a pandemic and protests concerning […]
Like many of you, I have been experiencing a lot of emotional fatigue lately. Between our ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the events that have unfolded over the last few weeks […]
According to a 2010 ALA diversity study, 88% of librarians are white . This is a huge problem in its own right, but guess what? 88% of us have an […]
scottmontreal. (2012, July 24). AIDS Activists protest private prison Wells Fargo [Digital image]. Retrieved June 07, 2020, from https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottmontreal/7654400724 If one does not learn from history, one is doomed to […]
Libraries have a diversity problem and a neutrality problem. We all know this; and a lot of us even actually acknowledge it. But, we’re still fighting to shift the tide […]
I have spent this week reflecting on how many times my heart has been heavy as I have witnessed yet another death of a person of color. As we continue […]
Like many other folks sheltering at home right now, I’ve been using my spare time to start a garden. It’s the third garden I’ve grown in my adult life. In […]
Fourandsixty. (2015). [International Labour Day Edit-a-Thon, University of Maryland Hornbake Library] [Photograph]. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Meetup/DC/UMDLabor Next week will be the first time I will not be working, in school, or both […]
I confess I wasn’t planning to write about COVID-19. But ruminating on how my month has transpired since my last post, I realized everything I was planning to write about […]
So, last October, I wrote about how finding community during your time as a MLIS student is important, especially if you are an online student. This has become especially […]
Before my area went under shelter in place orders back on March 17th, I had a library paraprofessional position and went to school full time, with plans for a summer […]
For those of us in the academic library world, the past few weeks have been an eye-opening experience. Like every schoolteacher in the world, our faculty had to convert their […]
If you follow the blog, you’ll know I have thoughts about vocational awe. And, as one would expect, Fobazi Ettarh’s concept of vocational awe is playing a large role in […]
These topics of mental health, burnout, work/life balance, and otherwise surviving library school and the profession have been frequent discussions this year. They keep coming up on the blog; Jane […]
So, originally, I had planned to talk about how I have observed an observable lack of agency among some of my peers from my days as an undergraduate student to […]
This past Friday, I was leading a session on Empathy-Driven Customer Service with approximately 20 public library staff members in my county. It had been an interesting day already: I […]
I’m taking a break from my series “To my fellow LIS Black, Indigenous, and People of Color” to talk about the impact coronavirus has had on the LIS field/students. I’m in Seattle, the U.S. epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. I live near the Life Care Center of Kirkland, where the first U.S. death occurred and now where over 25 people have died. All Washington state K-12 schools have been cancelled for at least six weeks and the University of Washington, along with other higher education institutions, moved online. Museums and public libraries have closed to the public, and buses and the streets of Seattle are empty. There’s no longer traffic at rush hour as many people now work from home. But what are the impacts on student library workers, grant-funded workers, or LIS students working on capstones, practicums, or internships?
If you have ever engaged with a piece of entertainment set during any historical period involving severe social events such as war or sickness, complete with emotionally charged scenes of tragedy […]
This week, I have been spending a lot of time thinking about all of the many things I do as a library supervisor that are not written into my job […]
This month, the Vanderbilt University Library began an advertising campaign which features a sign that reads, “Libraries don’t take sides.” It’s bright yellow with black block text floating on the […]
#DignidadLiteraria is new to the LIS field, but it has already created interesting discussions about publishing, who is represented in library collections, and who gets to speak on behalf of […]
Another quarter, another white LIS student making me question whether I really want to be in this field. It’s often a comment left on a class discussion board, on a […]
In Canada, we have a regular mental health event sponsored by Bell Canada. It’s called Bell Let’s Talk Day and this year it was on Wednesday, January 29th; which falls […]
I am angry. Quite angry. It is unusual for me to feel strong emotions, especially anger. But, apparently, politicians in my adopted home state of Missouri can get my blood […]
There’s a sign in the cafe attached to the library I work at. It reads, “The UC is making us sick.” I work at the University of California, Santa Cruz […]
In a supportive group of professionals that brainstorm together, a potential student recently asked what subject is best to major in prior to pursuing an MLIS. I’m not an expert […]
As the decade begins, one of the many things to worry about stands out – the warming of our planet and how little time we have to mitigate further heating […]
Mentorship – in any form – can be an effective way for LIS students of color to learn more about the field. We learn a lot outside the classroom through jobs, internships, and volunteer experiences, and mentorship is another aspect that can help increase a student’s knowledge. Yet besides learning about the academic hiring process, dealing with negative workplace environments, or where to find job postings, mentorship of LIS students of color by mentors of color can help us see ourselves in the field, learn how to navigate white spaces, and how to advocate for ourselves.
2020 has just started: a new month, a new year, and a new decade. The world is a crazy place right now; so I know that long-term planning might seem […]
Those who are interested in this career path, have started on this career path, or are far into this career path already are familiar with some of the top responses to […]
I’ve held customer service positions since my undergrad in college. I’ve worked in a call center, handled escalated customer service complaints for a food service franchise, and now staff reference […]
Around this time of year, I always find myself reflecting on the events of the past year and preparing for the new year ahead. This has especially been the […]
To my fellow LIS Black, Indigenous, and People of Color [Series]: Imposter Syndrome, Mental Health, and Surviving Another Day
Nearly everyone in grad school has dealt or is currently dealing with imposter syndrome. Those who claim to have never suffered from it are either lying or actually are the imposters. Alyssa wrote about imposter syndrome in September so, for this post, I’d like to focus on imposter syndrome as a person of color and especially for those of us who also have mental illnesses.
When you hear the word “union”, what comes to mind? Do you think about dockworkers and miners, police officers and construction workers? If you like celebrity news you’ve heard about […]
The 2020 Census is upon us. After many months of controversy around which questions could or could not be asked (note: citizenship is not a question); come April 1st, 2020, […]
To my fellow LIS Black, Indigenous, and People of Color [Series]: ALA Ethnic Caucuses (and more) Part 2
In this second part, I cover the American Indian Library Association (AILA) and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA). At the end I touch on some other non-ALA groups that might be of interest to readers.
Confession: While I’ve been working in libraries since around 2011, I did not think I wanted to be a librarian until about 8 months ago when I started to look […]
A few years back I read an article by Winston Rowntree titled “5 Responses to Sexism That Just Make Everything Worse,” and there’s a section on questioning institutions that has […]
I am a researcher and an over-preparer, and I am generally pretty quick on my intellectual feet. But a question at an interview this week (for my dream job, eek!) […]
Before even starting library school, students can join local and national associations, such as the American Library Association, often at a student rate. Within ALA are five ethnic caucuses: the American Indian Library Association (AILA), the Asian Pacific American Library Association (APALA), the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA), the Chinese American Library Association (CALA) and REFORMA—the National Association to Promote Library Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking.
Service. Equity. Commitment to communities. These are themes found in both the American Library Association Code of Ethics and the National Association of Social Worker’s Code of Ethics. Indeed, librarians […]
It is both Canadian Library Month and LGBTQ history month (in the US, UK, and Canada); so to celebrate both of those together, I thought that this month I would […]
I listened intently while the instructor in my collection management class spoke about the importance of library policies. Of course, one assignment required that we review policies. It was during […]
The University of Washington iSchool recently launched the Center for an Informed Public (CIP) in partnership with other school entities. This center works to research and combat misinformation because of […]
When I applied to library school, I knew I was taking a risk. I was finishing up my undergraduate degree in American Ethnic Studies (AES) and my classes were always filled with BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color). Sure, my English classes, my other major, were full of white people and I had grown up in a predominantly white suburb, but I felt lucky that I had so many positive experiences in AES. But looking around at my MLIS orientation I knew that this would be different. My program, and as an extension the field, looked nothing like me. How was I going to survive three years, especially as an online student?
Photo courtesy of Stones15woon Over the past few weeks, I have had several opportunities to consider the confluence of library institutions and neuroatypicality.
I am completing two literature courses this week: Picture Books Across the Curriculum and Young Adult Materials. In ten short weeks, I read 300 picture books and 10 Young Adult […]
Libraries no longer act solely as repositories of books. They now act as living rooms, offering anything from craft programs and makerspaces to computer classes and technology assistance. But what […]
It has been discussed here on the Hack Library School Blog why LIS education must include social justice curriculum. Many schools are starting to incorporate this into their programs through […]
Cover Photo by Aubrey Young I’ve been doing assignments of late that involve me seeking out reference librarians and evaluating them with my inquiries and it’s got me thinking about […]
For those just entering library school I thought I would share something I wasn’t expecting: the assumption that you secure an internship, graduate assistantship, volunteer position, and/or apprenticeship sooner than later […]
I have worked in an academic library for thirty years. First in technical services, then transitioning to Access Services. Yet here I am, getting my MSIS with a concentration in […]
It’s June, faithful HLS readers, and, for many of us, that means one thing – Pride Month! Beyond colorful parades and fabulous parties, there is a serious meaning behind this […]
For those currently in library school, you have seen firsthand how social justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion make sudden, relevant appearances in most LIS courses. If you need a place […]
A year ago I was finishing up my first year as a full-time English professor at a community college in a semi-rural town. After 7 years of teaching as an […]
When you’re caught up in the minutiae of graduate school, remember the big picture. That’s the most critical lesson I learned during my first year of library school. For me, […]
I am one semester into my Master of Library Science program and while my area of major interest (currently health librarianship!) has shifted and morphed over the past five months, […]
See living document and feel free to add resources at https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Zcu6d-Gbgf7VkZ43POEYeqhP8VtGV6Xb-tVr_yy0-yM/edit?usp=sharing Approaching difficult conversations: Crucial Conversations book Presentation/video recording: “The Surprising Connection between Vulnerability and Power”. This 90-minute virtual session […]
I entered library school undecided as to what path I wanted to take in libraries. I had worked for four years in my college’s academic library, so I was leaning […]
A month ago, I attended a webcast seminar, ‘Transgender Inclusion in Libraries’, hosted by San Jose State University’s iSchool. This was the first webcast seminar, or webinar, I was attending under my own power since entering SJSU’s MLIS program, and this likely contributed to my wild underestimation of the number of audience members and, thus, overestimation of my ability to personally engage with the webinar speakers. Last semester saw the composition of my first academic paper written as an MLIS candidate, and with a sixteen-page paper on the queer information community in hand, I was eager to supplement the narrow spread of academic work that I had found that covers transgender issues in the library.
Recently, I had the pleasure of reading Joy Lisi Rankin’s 2018 book, A People’s History of Computing in the United States. As someone who thinks a lot and writes a […]
I wanted to share some interesting things I’ve come across in my research for my thesis project. The project focuses on digital tool development as a way for librarians, research […]
Tumblr and Facebook’s decisions to censor and remove any adult or erotic material on their platforms has set the internet atwitter (pun intended). There were, of course, thinkpieces lauding or […]
When I arrived at grad school, I was certain that I would not do research. I had chosen a course-based program for a reason – I wanted to learn from […]
This series on tribal collections highlights three projects from across the libraries, archives, and museums space that focus on Native American communities and culture, using best practices set forth by […]
This series on tribal collections highlights three projects from across the libraries, archives, and museums space that focus on Native American communities and culture, using best practices set forth by […]
Recently, I had the great privilege of helping coordinate Network Detroit 2018, a digital humanities conference at Wayne State University. The theme of this year’s conference was “Digital Humanities and […]
As ubiquitous as the ALA was to me even before starting library school, the IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions) was something I only learned about through a […]
(Image from the Indigenous Digital Archive: “The Pratt’s Quarters Carlisle Indian School housed 100,000 children between 1879 and 1918″) This series on tribal collections highlights three projects from across the libraries, archives, and museums space […]
If your classes are asynchronous, you probably have to write posts and responses about class readings. This format is not isolated to LIS programs. In a former graduate program, I […]
I recently came across a charming phrase at the University of Oregon, where the Ph.D. candidate in linguistics can fulfill a language requirement through knowledge of “library languages, such as […]
I still remember how scared and nervous I felt the first time stepping into a library in America. I didn’t really speak English. I looked different than most typical patrons. […]
(Photo courtesy of Ijeoma Oluo, 2018) Like all forms of oppression, racism is fraught with history, guilt, complexities, nuances, multiple perspectives, and it can be a contentious discussion topic. Having […]
In December 2017, after the conclusion of the University of Denver’s Fall quarter, I met with students from the first Privilege and Equity special topics course to discuss creating a […]
Take a look at your library. What works in the collection are from LGBTQ+ authors? Are the public restrooms gender-inclusive? Is gender a category on your library card application, and if so, are there options beyond M/F?
These are just a handful of the gender diversity issues for libraries that we explored in a recent gender diversity training for public library staff.
If you belong to the library world and are in any way involved with social media (aka. if you’re reading this sentence), then you definitely heard about the disastrous Forbes […]
Here’s an ugly word: “gentrification”. There are some beautiful words floating around Detroit right now. “Resurgence”, “booming”, and “exciting” are shouted boldly from large headlines. Without a doubt, over the […]
If you’ve opened Twitter in the last couple weeks – and follow as many librarians as I do – I’m sure you’ve heard of the ALA Bill of Rights Amendment […]
Have you ever had an “AH-HA” moment when you were doing your readings? That feeling is the best! It happens mostly when the text echos with my own situations and beliefs, or when the text enlightens you with insights you have never thought about before.
Social Justice, Privilege, Equity, Inclusion. These terms are all terms that each of us as MLIS students have heard with some level of frequency. Libraries are commonly thought to be […]
2020 will be a very interesting year. The United States will have another presidential election. The James Webb telescope, Hubble’s replacement, is scheduled to launch into space. And the United […]
From an annotated bibliography on nonbinary gender identities in media, written by nonbinary scholar and librarian Charlie McNabb, and adopted by the American Library Association (ALA), “Nonbinary identities are those […]
Librarians for Social Justice started out as a group created by students at University of Iowa School of Library and Information Science, and quickly morphed into a community organization as […]
The origins of the San Francisco Public Library are made of the same elements as the origins of the city itself. We are a city marked by exponential growth of […]
Last month I had the wonderful opportunity to attend the Coalition for Networked Information’s Spring Membership Meeting. While the conference was full of intriguing sessions, one in particular that has […]
My semester is coming to its end, though my grad school career is not (I still have one more semester!). Still, this will be my last post on Hack Library […]
Does your program have an ALA Student Chapter? At University of Iowa, our student chapter is called the Library and Information Science Student Organization (LISSO, for short) and I had […]
Since beginning graduate school, I’ve had difficulty knowing how to engage with professional associations. Being both a Mosaic Scholar and a Spectrum Scholar, I received a free annual membership to […]
My neighborhood library, the Main Library in San Francisco, is continually active with classes, events, speakers, and makerspace. Although there are many programs for adults, they are mostly focused around […]
Prior to library school, I never saw librarianship as a particularly adventurous career. So I was pleased to discover that librarianship can take one to exciting places.