ALA Annual 2015

Marriage, Millennials & Mentoring at #alaac15

I quickly realized how easy it is to fall even more in love with this profession as ALA Annual began. A quick recap of the wonders of ALA, library colleagues and San Francisco:

Love is Law
Graffiti found on hotel shuttle route

The day started on a major high note as I woke up to the SCOTUS same-sex marriage ruling. #LoveWins. What makes this even better is that we are just beginning the largest Pride Parade in a city that has rainbow flags flying on every street. What better weekend and location to host a library conference?

Kim Lear, BridgeWorks
Kim Lear, BridgeWorks

Next stop was to check in for my panel presentation at the OCLC Symposium focusing on “Millennials in Transition.” Our keynote speaker Kim Lear from BridgeWorks made this sometime overdone topic extremely engaging and shared some tips to better work with multiple generations. Some takeaways included taking a step back when confronted by someone of a different generation to think about where they are coming from, not focusing on the negatives of an entire generation but how you can create better intergenerational relationships, and creating an environment with “experiences” to attract younger generations such as social settings for new parents or safe spaces for teens.

Day 1 Exhibit Hall book haul, just for fun!
Day 1 Exhibit Hall book haul, just for fun!

Day one ended with finally meeting one of my my mentors in person. Email conversations are great, but being able to sit on a hotel couch and chat about all the library things is so much better! ALA can be so overwhelming for a new librarian and finding a mentor isn’t always a simple task. Luckily there are many mentor programs and through NMRT I was matched with a wonderful librarian who has a wealth of knowledge I get to soak in as I vent and share my own career goals. I actually skipped a social event for this hour long one-on-one chat, but as a previous blogger noted: sometimes you can learn more when you just go with the flow when there is a spontaneous change in your plans.

Looking forward to another unforgettable day tomorrow as I start my morning with Gloria Steinem and dive into more afternoon programs.

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