How did I get here?

It’s an interesting thing to ponder – how do people become librarians? The Library Routes Project compiles several journeys to the profession. The variety is quite interesting and I think is a good source of information for any prospective LIS student, especially those coming to library school with little or no library experience.

So here’s my little story…

In 2004 I was a student at UC Berkeley, and I spent a semester studying abroad at Georg-August-Universität Göttingen. When I came back to Berkeley to finish up my degree, double major in History and German (minor in Linguistics and Medieval Studies), I needed a job. I probably could have gone back to the job I left at the College of Chemistry, but I wanted something different. I applied to a bank, a Peets, and a library. The library was the first place to get back to me and I was quickly hired. (This all happened within less than a week from my return to the States.) I worked there through my graduation, and then applied to replace the circulation manager when he left to go to grad school. By this point I was sort of thinking of library school, not because I felt a huge desire to be a librarian, but I figured it was alright and a way to avoid the two body problem.

After a year of being circulation manager I was pretty much decided on library school, and enrolled in Drexel’s I-School. Going to school online allowed me to continue working full time. (Nevermind beating breast cancer.) I opted for the dual degree – library science and information systems – because I wanted to have more technical chops. When I got close to graduation from Drexel, I knew I would have to find another job. I started applying to other science and engineering library jobs in the area when my library was able to resurrect an un-filled Librarian position to offer be when I interviewed elsewhere. I realised this is a pretty unique environment with a lot of freedom, so I stayed. In July 2008, I officially became a Transportation Librarian.

It’s been a pretty action packed time and I’m still not entirely sure how I ended up here. I think some of it is inertia, but there’s a lot of luck. This is a great library and the transportation community is quite amazing. I really think special libraries are great. In a small amount of time I feel that I’ve become part of something larger and can really improve a part of society. I’m vain in that I like that.

One thought on “How did I get here?

  1. Hi Kendra, great post! Just wondering – I couldn’t see a link to this on the Library Routes Wiki, did you add one? Let me know if you want me to put an entry in the table for you.

    Cheers,
    Laura (aka Woodsiegirl)

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