Friday, July 16, 2010

The Personal Side of Librarianship

The personal side of librarianship is the side that I love the most. When I was a kid the only way to use the library was to go to the library, which in my town was located in a small house on main street. If memory serves correctly, it didn't even encompass the entire house, I think the Historical Society had the top floor. I haven't been to that library in close to 15 years (give or take), but I can remember the layout and the way it felt to be in there. I remember the little cubby of a kids area, and how it felt like you were part of something when you were in there. I also remember the wonderful librarians who I quite honestly thought were some version of the fairy godmothers from Sleeping Beauty, because it seemed like whatevr I asked for they found as if magic.

Today, many people don't see the need for the librarian's help when finding information. Admittedly, for many years, I didn't feel like I needed one either. It was all there on the internet, or in many cases, at the bookstore. I think that what I look forward to is not just being that fairy godmother who finds the books, but also the person that can help you find anything, in any format. If you build the personal relationships with the patrons and the community, they will be able to come to you to get the answers they need because they know you will be there to help.

I can't wait to have those interactions and build those relationships with the community!
Source: Haycock, K., Sheldon, B. (Eds.) The Portable MLIS Insights From the Experts (locations 1990- 2321). Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited.

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