Want to step in and say thank you, and keep em coming, I enjoy reading about everyone's backgrounds and their journey per se...
Asst. Head of IT Services
Charlotte United Christian Academy
Sent from my Windows Phone, please excuse mistakes
From: Gem Stone-Logan<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Sent: 5/30/2014 1:42 PM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] College Question!
I agree with most of the responses already provided. My personal
background: I have a BA in Computer Science with minors in English and
Business and my MLS. Currently, my official job title is "IT
Application Engineer" and my job is to look after the ILS. Unlike a
lot of other places, the only thing I work on is the ILS (and reports
from the ILS). I don't do any cataloging or metadata work and don't
interact with other electronic resources/databases unless they work
directly with our ILS. I also currently don't do any web development
or PC troubleshooting.
Reflections on my education:
I'm very happy with my BA in Computer Science. For my position, my
database class was particularly useful as were the various projects
assigned in other classes that required me to learn more than what the
class was ostensibly teaching (i.e. learning how to learn). Because I
went to a liberal arts school, I also had to take a full year of
English writing which I felt was very valuable. My English minor made
me more well-rounded which is useful in library land. My business
minor has so far been pretty useless professionally but has been great
from a personal finance perspective :)
I worked for a year as phone tech support while an undergrad. That was
a hellish job which I'd only do again if my child was starving.
However, I learned a lot about people skills from it as well as it
helped me practice troubleshooting things I couldn't see myself. I'm
still bemused the company expected phone tech support to be able to
walk a person with no computer experience through changing a hard
drive (usually explaining the difference between the computer and the
monitor was the hardest part).
I value my MLS but from a cost perspective it's probably hard to
justify in my current position. For my job description, the CS/IT
degree is required and the MLS is preferred, I have mixed feelings
about this. As an ILS administrator, the cataloging class I took was
the most useful library school class. I'm not a cataloger but I have
enough knowledge to be able to ask sensible questions when they need
the ILS to do something specific. The reference class was also useful,
particularly in terms of learning about the reference interview which
is used all the time in IT troubleshooting. There's also cultural
advantages to an MLS but computer people and library people already
have a fairly similar culture, even if the jargon is different.
My understanding is some libraries will help pay for an MLS (I believe
mine does, or use to) so perhaps that might be an option. There's a
lot of good online library programs and I know quite a few of the
staff in our district get their MLS while working for the district.
All that being said, being open to learning is more important than the
specific classes you take. Regardless of what you take in school,
things will change over the course of your career and it's important
to know how to continue gaining knowledge and skills once you've
High Plains Library District
On Wed, May 28, 2014 at 9:17 PM, Riley Childs <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> I was curious about the type of degrees people had. I am heading off to college next year (class of 2015) and am trying to figure out what to major in. I want to be a systems librarian, but I can't tell what to major in! I wanted to hear about what paths people took and how they ended up where they are now.
> BTW Y'All at NC State need a better tour bus driver (not the c4l tour, the admissions tour) ;) the bus ride was like a rickety roller coaster... 🎢
> Also, if you know of any scholarships please let me know ;) you would be my BFF :P
> Riley Childs
> Asst. Head of IT Services
> Charlotte United Christian Academy
> (704) 497-2086
> Sent from my Windows Phone, please excuse mistakes