Journey to Librarian
When most people think about librarians, they think of people who love books or the typical lady in thick framed glasses waiting to say "shhhhh". While some of that may true, being a librarian is a much more in-depth experience. What you may not know is that librarians are not always book lovers and may not always look like what we always thought of.
Librarians are a big part of the foundation that grows the library system. Part of their job is to provide services to the community while also helping you to navigate the library.
If you have an interest in becoming a librarian it is always best to obtain an entry level position to find out if this career is truly right for you. Shadowing librarians that is already in the field and conducting interviews, is also a good way to gain experience. Here's what it takes to be one.
High school is where you can begin your library career. Most libraries offer job positions to young adults ages 14 and up. Volunteering is another way to get started with connecting with library staff and associates. Learning all you can about the library system will help you to discover if a library career is truly right for you. While working or volunteering you have a chance to get to know how different material is categorized. You will also get to know the many other services the library provides.
The next step is to get a Bachelor's degree. There are many programs you may have never thought of that can get you prepared for a library career. Believe it or not, any type of college degree can prepare you for a library career. Make sure to take courses in subjects related to English, business, math and technology.
Also, visit your college library often to get to know how their library system works. Talk to the staff about any questions you may have about your the library or a future career. Become familiar with the material and how it is organized and shelved there as well. Get involved with events, activities and volunteer if you can. You may also be able to obtain a job there in the process.
After receiving a Bachelor's degree, you will have to apply to graduate school. There are a lot of online colleges that offer Library and Information Science programs. Your major will usually be referred to as Library and Information Science where you can choose your specialty. The degree you will obtain is a Master of Library and Information Science followed by the specialty you chose.
In graduate school you can expect to study courses pertaining to library technology and current trends. It is always best to connect with your professors to establish good networking skills and to gain employment after graduation. Stay involved with your school's library and look for other ways to stay involved in other library systems near you. It is important to get all of the experience you can.
After you have received your Bachelor's degree it is best to continue to learn about the library system and the current trends. Be sure to take courses in public speaking since some librarians are required to speak to large audiences and conduct story time.
The library is constantly evolving each day. In order to provide the best possible library services you must stay up to date to better assist your patrons and book collections. It always helps to gain certifications that pertain to library services as well. There are many programs for continuing education through library member websites such as the American Library Association and many more.
Below is an info-graphic, which lists typical salaries of library employees, which is something to consider if you are looking to make a living as a library professional. According to recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage was over $57, 680, which is estimated to be about 27.73. This occupation is expected to grow at about 2 percent over the next decade.
© 2017 Lanecia Smith