At least, mine was.
This week CPD23 is covering Routes to Librarianship. Their post is covering the steps that are mostly required over in the UK, and I find it interesting. The formal accreditation and chartership that they have seems to lean more towards the tenure-building that (fewer and fewer) academic librarians do. While I know that there are numerous continuing education experiences for librarians all over the US, I think that not requiring them, and not ensuring that all librarians have the opportunities, shows a lack on our parts.
I am a book lover and hoarder. I read voraciously and quickly. I prefer to read for fun, however I have added a lot of non-fiction to my personal collection as my interests in gardening, knitting and cooking grow. I remember being in my elementary school library all the time. I knew where the books I loved to read (I am a re-reader) where shelved and I can still picture those places in my head. I had the opportunity to actually work in the library when I was in sixth grade, and remember writing names and stamping due dates on cards. My high school library was a similar retreat for me, and browsing the paperbacks was a pastime. I was at the local library almost every weekend. I wondered what the people behind the desks did, but they always helped me.
My path to becoming a librarian began formally in 2001 when I decided to go back to school for my Master's degree. I was employed in local government, but was not sure it was really what I wanted to do. I was originally going to pursue math education, however my undergraduate was not in that field and I would have needed far more courses. I discovered the Library Science degree at the University at Albany (NY), took one course I paid for out-of-pocket, and fell in love. At the time I was going to pursue Library Media, as I figured that being on a similar schedule as my children would be beneficial, but my introverted number-pushing self came to the forefront and I ended up with a general degree with an emphasis on cataloging. We were required to have one session of internship, which I did in the acquisitions department at the university.
After acquiring my degree in 2003, I job hopped from an archival summer job at the Chautauqua Institution to landing a job in western MA as a cataloger at a public library. The library I started in was unique as being one of the few that still used Cutter Expansive. I moved laterally to another cataloging and acquisitions job and for a couple more years worked within public libraries, then into digital projects at the automation network. Here was where I developed a lot more web design and coding skills, and now supervise the department that deals with the public and digital catalogs and websites for our network. I still get to dip my hand a bit into collection development with our OverDrive collection, as I am the main selector for several genres.
I enjoy my work. There is always something new, although I am finding I really enjoy the ebook collection, both in acquisitions and in training. It is a fascinating and growing topic. I would like to write and present more. I co-authored a chapter on our digital repository a year ago, plus presented for the Digital Commonwealth conference, and of course blogging on librarianship and book topics are a given.
My work is not static, nor do I expect it to be.