I would rather hire a tech savvy librarian than vice versa.
Director of Technical Services
Drew University Library
36 Madison Ave, Madison, NJ 07940
On Fri, Feb 17, 2023 at 9:34 AM Nicole Scalessa <[log in to unmask]>
> For a technical position like that I would state an MLIS degree or
> equivalent experience. There is a lot to be said for hands-on library
> experience regardless of the actual degree you have. I have been working in
> libraries for 25 years and opted to get an MBA in IT management instead of
> an MLIS. After having worked in libraries for about 20 years already that
> was the degree that would provide the most career opportunities. I had
> worked in every area from library assistant to reference to cataloging
> while all along the way being taught by brilliant librarians how to do the
> work. I was also simultaneously managing the website and IT
> responsibilities because I had a knack for it. Now I am in my dream job at
> another institution.
> On Fri, Feb 17, 2023 at 9:21 AM Hammer, Erich F <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > Will,
> > I am the "Head of Systems" here, and I don't think I would have been
> > considered for the job without my MLIS. I had 20 years experience in IT
> > (during which I worked through the degree) before being hired, and my
> > supervisor and team recognized that I had no actual Library experience.
> > They were willing to guide me because of my technical abilities, but the
> > first year was completely overwhelming. The complexity and lingo had my
> > brain struggling to comprehend how it all fit together. I believe I'm
> > doing OK at the job now, but I have to give enormous credit to my
> > incredible and dedicated employees and also recognize that the pandemic
> > shutdown -- when I was the only person in the building for several months
> > -- afforded me the opportunity to catch up and resolve problems that
> > couldn't be managed in short, 15 minute segments between meetings and
> > crises.
> > What I'm saying is that I honestly don't think the courses I took for my
> > degree did all that much to prepare me for this job. What it may have
> > though is tell the hiring committee that I was/am interested in the
> > concepts and philosophies of libraries and information science and am
> > willing to continue learning.
> > Maybe the MLIS degree should be an alternative to x years of library
> > experience (along with demonstrated technical skills).
> > Erich
> > On Thursday, February 16, 2023 at 18:24, Will Martin eloquently
> > > All,
> > >
> > > We're considering taking our Systems Librarian position and removing
> > > requirement for a library degree, making it a technician position
> > instead. The
> > > job's primary focus is in working with Alma configuration and
> > troubleshooting
> > > the perennial off-campus access issues. The hope is that removing the
> > > library degree requirement will make recruiting easier. In past we've
> > > difficulty getting candidates who had both the library degree and the
> > > requisite technical proficiency.
> > >
> > > I am curious to hear from other universities: do you require your
> > > person to hold a library degree? Why or why not? If you do require
> > one, do
> > > you find you have to do extensive technical training with new hires?
> > you
> > > don't, do you wind up having to train people on library-related stuff?
> > Either
> > > way, how has your approach worked out?
> > >
> > > Will Martin
> > >
> > > Head of Digital Initiatives, Systems and Services
> > > Chester Fritz Library
> > > University of North Dakota
> > > he/his/him
> > >
> > > 701.777.4638
> Nicole H. Scalessa
> Head of Digital Scholarship and Technology Services
> (845) 437-5219 <+18454375219>
> she, her, hers
> [log in to unmask]
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