I graduated in 1997 in English Literature and History. After several years working in the retail sector, an opportunity came up to work in public libraries as a ‘Customer Services Officer’. Although I understand this title has proven to be controversial (not least amongst librarians), it was purely down to the job title that I applied for the post. Had the title been different, it is very likely I would never have applied as I would not have felt qualified to apply for such a post.
After around a year of working in the library, I decided to apply to study an MSc Econ in Information and Library Studies at Aberystwyth via their distance learning program. I very much hope that once I get my qualification I will increase my chances of finally becoming a librarian (hence the title of the blog) .
Last year I left public libraries to take up a role in the systems team at the local university. It’s still not a librarian post, but it has given me the opportunity to broaden my skills and get some much needed experience under my belt.
As well as my current role, I am also one of the founders of the Voices for the Library campaign. Launched in 2010, the organisation was created to try and address the perception of public libraries amongst the media and the general public. To date we have had a number of successes and been name checked frequently by the mainstream media. That said, there is still a lot of work to do and, with the increasing pressure of cuts and closures, the job won’t get easier any time soon.
As well as campaigning, I have also written a number of articles regarding current issues facing libraries and librarians. A list of these can be found below.
We still need libraries in the digital age. The Guardian, July 2010.
Love your librarian. ORG Zine, February 2011.
Shut out. ORG Zine, April 2011.
The danger of the Kindle lending library. ORG Zine, May 2011