As this entry posts, I will be starting my last day as a Youth Services Librarian. For the past five years, I have worked with Toddlers all the way up to Teens. It has been a very rewarding experience. While I will not miss cleaning up the “accidents” on the carpet, I will miss the programs and seeing the light in a child’s face when they make that connection where a love of reading clicks because they finally found the perfect book.
But this entry is not about that.
For the past year, LinkedIn has been my go to website. I highly recommend it as a tech tool to put in your arsenal even if you are not looking for a job. The reason is of course networking.
Over the summer, I received an email from a MLIS candidate who was interested in networking with others in the Youth Services field. It was a wow moment for me because I hadn’t really done much with the service other than upload my resume. I have had an account on LinkedIn for a couple of years, but had only a few connections. After I received that email, I started to think that I might want to grow those connections a bit. I network on Twitter, why not LinkedIn?
Then I started to sign up for the special interest groups. I get emails sent to my inbox everyday containing a digest of the posts from that day. These are professionals in my field who share my interests. Sometimes I comment and sometimes I am a lurker just getting ideas.
One particular group that I am a member of is the Stem in Libraries group created by Vera Gubnitskaia of the Orange County Library System. I recommend this group if you are interested in how Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) programs are being implemented in libraries.
If you are new to libraries and looking for a job or maybe just thinking about a career change, you might want to follow the INALJ-I Need a Library Job Group. This group has helpful tips on what to do in an interview as well as keeping you updated on what jobs are out there in the library field. One of the things that is recommended you do when searching for a job is to research the company before you go for the interview. -Yes, I used LinkedIn to find out everything I could about prospective employers and their employees.
There are plenty more interest groups out there. I belong to several that are comic and graphic novel related because of my involvement with the No Flying No Tights website. There is even a group for Managing Youth Services Departments in Libraries. You just have to find the group that best fits your needs.
While I may no longer be in Youth Services, I will still hold an interest in children and technology. However, my new role will be be focused on library training for all departments and services. If you are interested in connecting, just send me an invite.
Our guest blogger today is Jennifer Hopwood, formally a Youth Services Librarian at the Franklin T DeGroodt Memorial Library, currently the Library Training Coordinator at Southern Maryland Regional Library Association, and a member of the ALSC Children and Technology committee.
If you’d like to write a guest post for the ALSC Blog, please contact Mary Voors, ALSC Blog manager, at email@example.com.