Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Meme (?) : For the record

Following Jenica Rogers...

  • I will turn 38 in 3 months.
  • I've never been in a tenure-track position. I do have "faculty status for the purposes of governance and service," though. That happened when I was 33.
  • I’ve been in the profession since 1993 — 18 years. I’ve had jobs outside of libraries when I've had multiple jobs at one time, but working at Wendy's after my freshman year of college is the last time I was without a library job.
  • I’ve had my MLIS since 1998 — 13 years this August.
  • I started supervising library staff when I was 26, in my first MLS-required job. Some of them had their MLS too, even though none of their positions required it.
  • I started managing budgets when I was 26, in my first MLS-required job.
  • I had my first grant application approved when I was 26, in my first MLS-required job. Biggest grant to date: $1.2 million, approved when I was 29.
  • I presented at my first local conference when I was 31, and I will be 38 when I present at my first national (ish) one later this spring.
Jenica says, "Each and every one of those milestones was scary, and challenging, and I didn’t feel 'ready' for any of them." Can I relate! I went basically from grad school to being a public library director. Then I became a church library director and discovered that I was actually more of an associate pastor for adult education. Then I became an academic library director and had to learn everything about faculty culture and IL instruction and, well, everything. There are rewards to going from zero to 60 in a short period of time, but feeling like an expert is not one of them. Jenica is right: just get in there and start doing what matters to you. I promise you, it feels much better to struggle with something you care about than to breeze through something you're indifferent to.

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