Did you know that part of the Membership Committee’s purpose is to “retain and engage existing members by connecting members with ALSC opportunities and resources” and to “plan and assume responsibility for new and existing member engagement events?” What does that mean? It means we get to host fun events for you!
Image depicts SpongeBob and other characters standing in a circle with balloons as if at a party. One says, “Did someone say ‘party’?!” and then screams and runs through a wall.
If you’re a youth services enthusiast and have been to an in-person ALA conference, you have probably attended an ALSC 101 program organized by the Membership Committee. These networking events would usually have an icebreaker activity, ALSC trivia, other fun activities, and hors d’oeuvres. Following ALSC 101, the Membership Committee would organize ALSC dinners, in which participants would go off to several area restaurants and enjoy small group dinners with other ALSC members. These events have been great for both current ALSC members and the ALSC-curious. In the last couple of years, this kind of event has not been feasible, so the Membership Committee has been trying to find new ways to offer networking opportunities during virtual conferences.
We have done virtual ALSC 101s and an ALSC Virtual Membership Social, in which we invited some seasoned ALSC members to talk about the different committee work they’ve done for our association, but it is difficult to provide a warm, cozy space to network online. We all know how awkward online socials can be! For the 2021 Annual, we tried a new event: an ALSC Open House. At this event, current or recent chairs and co-chairs hosted breakout rooms where they could describe their committee’s specific work, meet interested folks, and answer questions about what committee life is like. The good news is that these virtual events have been open to anyone, regardless of ALSC membership status or conference attendance. We are glad to be able to make these events more accessible and reach new folks.
For LibLearnX, the Membership Committee still wants to provide a membership event that is useful and fun for participants. We are turning to you to ask what you’ve enjoyed and what you would like to see for this event! We are all battling some Zoom-fatigue, so any ideas you have to make our social/networking event/info session as relevant, engaging, and FUN as possible are welcome.
Please click on this link to go to a Google form where you can submit your ideas. The form will close on 11/15/21 so that we have enough time to turn the ideas into reality.
Don’t forget to sign up for LibLearnX, Jan 21-24, 2022!
Allison Knight is a branch manager at MidPointe Library System in southwestern Ohio and current co-chair of the Membership Committee.
This blog post relates to ALSC Core Competencies of: VII. Professionalism and Professional Development.