Friday, 25 November 2011

Thing 20 - The Library Routes project

I'd been on the Library Routes wiki in the past, as I always like to be nosy into why other people had decided to choose librarianship, but I had never posted myself.  I was happy to remedy that by adding a link to my Thing 10 post.

I then started looking through the other entries to compare people's paths to librarianship.  I was struck by how many people, like myself, had come to the profession after originally training or studying in a different area.  So many people had first degrees in subjects such as English, Art or Humanities, and only considered becoming a librarian after graduation.

The Wikiman's visual description of his career options
I was also interested to see how many people work part-time in libraries, particularly those who combine two part-time jobs to create a full-time equivalent, as this is what I'm currently doing.  One thing I certainly noticed when I started working in libraries was the wide range of  flexible working patterns that were available.  

Both my library jobs so far have been part-time, because when I was doing my first Masters (in ceramics) I got a part-time job as a pottery technician in a local community learning centre.  I love that job, but the hours and pay are limited.  When I graduated rather than give it up to do a full-time job, I searched for ones that could work around it, which is how I first ended up in a library.  When I realised that libraries were where I wanted to stay, I was heartened to discover that part-time roles were a common feature. 

In the time since starting my current library job I've also added teaching to my pottery technician's job.  I'm relieved that for the moment I don't have to choose between two (very different) jobs that I love, they work side by side very well.  Long may it last!

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