As they were the inspiration beginning my venture into blogging, I thought I would base my first blog on the CILIP New Profesionals Information Day 2011 and my experience of it. It was a free event arranged by Lyndsay Rees-Jones and Kathy Ennis and it was brilliant! It was advertised purely through social media and open for New Professionals and people, like myself, looking to begin their career in librarianship.
There were 5 speakers all of whom had their own individuals journeys and experiences to get where they are now and all of them were incerdibly inspirational!
First we heard Steve Clark, a business mentor for James Caan (aka a Dragon from that Den!). Even though Steve did not have a background in library and information services he still managed to inspire me with his story of success and tips on how to be successful, ”North of confident south of arrogant” was just one of his taglines! He recognised the importance of the work we do and encouraged us to believe in ourselves and the work we do, emphasising the need to find yor ‘niche’. (Something I am still pondering…).
Beth Ruddock’s talk on ‘Getting involved’ was very useful in opening your mind to the possibilities of expanding your involvement in the workplace and outside of the workplace. In groups we discussed ways of getting involved for instance, becoming a member of an organisation, joining a committee, writing a blog discussing your experience etc. Finally we all had to write what steps we were going to take next to get involved more with our work and career in Library and Information studies. (I think my choice of next step is clear!) I have also subscribed to LIS New Professionals Network.
Nicely following on from this was Lindsay’s workshop; ‘Getting experience’. Lindsay talked about her career and how she came to be where she is now. She spoke with such passion and enthusiam it was really inspiring to know that someone who had worked in a library environment for the majority or her career had so many good memories and experiences to tell. Lindsay also got us into groups and asked us to discuss either how to get experience, or how we might use our experience. My group discussed the use of experience and managed to fill a whole side of A3 with all the positives of experience. It really did make me want to get out there and apply myself evem more to my work.
Alex Wilson-Campbell gave a very informative talk about writing CVs. I always find myself struggling to find the best way to lay my CV out and to get it noticed, always unsure of what needs to be included and what doesn’t. Alex’s tips were great and the next day I started to re-write my CV and I think I will going to take him up on the free CV check via his RapidCVwriting website! It was also Alex’s birthday and I think we all felt privileged that he had chosen to spend his special day advising and talking to all of us!!
The final workshop I attended was Maria’s ‘Getting International’. I must admit that prior to hearing Maria talk, I wasn’t sure what I could gain from this workshop, I was aware that your qualification was recognised in other countries and that it might be a possibility for the future but that is where my knowledge/thoughts ended. Maria completely opened my eyes to the variety of options available. Her work for women in Africa and so forth sounds incredible and I was really inspired by it. I think it is something I will definitely look more into. Maria’s positive attitude and love for what she does shone through and I really admire the fact she is doing the majority of her work for nothing!
Over the day I met lots of new people and it was refreshing to meet many people in a similar position to me, hoping to start their postgrad soon and sharing the same enthusiasm for the future as I do. It was also good to talk to people who were a bit further down the line, either part way through their course or recently completed, they were very encouraging about the course and their enjoyment of it. I also had the chance to catch up wih people I had met at previous conferences, courses etc and it’s always reassuring to know that the more courses you attend the more faces you will know. (Networking, right?!). Realising the support availale from CILIP was also very reassuring, all CILIP employees present at NPID2011 were very approachable and forthcoming with information and inspiration and this only served to make my thirst to pursue a career in LIS stronger.
Behind all of today’s workshops was the emphasis of the importance of social media and networking. Already an avid user of Facebook and Twitter I have decided to try out blogging. If anything else I feel it is an opportunity for me to practice refective writing that I am sure will come in handy when I come to doing my chatership in the future.
One question asked at the end ofthe day was ‘Has anyone not already and CILIP member become encourgaged to do so today?’ my answer is that it is not that I do not want to become a CILIP memeber, I would love to, but it is the pricetag that comes with it that is holding me back currently. Perhaps my first year can be a Christmas present from my family!
I unfortunately missed out on the LISNPN drinks at the end of the evening, (a 3 hour bus journey to Norwich awaited me), but from tweets I have seen it looks like everyone had a great time and hopefully I’ll be able to join them on the next meet up.
All in all I had a great day and would recommended it to anyone!
Look forward to meeting people at future NP events!