It's been a week (almost) since I handed in my final and finished classes this spring. I'm officially 1/2 of the way through my MLS program. Hard to believe, but I am.
I've watched friends graduate this semester and as they walk out into an uncertain job market, I wonder what I will be facing in another year. How much better will things get? Or worse? Although I've never felt that being a librarian was a career that would bring me wealth or status, I have always thought I would be able to find a job in this field rather easily. Now, I'm not so sure....
A few months ago I had the opportunity to interview and amazing woman, Mary Ellen Bates. I was interviewing her for an upcoming book on entrepreneurial librarians. My piece on Ms. Bates is a supplementary article and will either conclude or introduce the chapter on business owners who are librarians. Talking with Mary Ellen reminded me, once again, that the job market doesn't have to start and stop with who is or more likely, who isn't hiring. I can create my own work, my own job description and my only limitations are...well...quite frankly, myself.
I don't want to give the whole interview away, but there is a very good part where she talks about what skills you need to have to be successful as, not only an entrepreneur, but also as an employee. While I can't publish it here...I will post the link to the book once it is in print. I think it is one of the most important things I have learned about seeking my own place in the job market.
Looking for opportunities and making connections in everything I do that has to do w/ this career field is very important. I hope my friends and colleagues who have recently graduated have great luck in finding their career place in the world, but most of all, I hope they remember the value of learning and growing continues with or without that immediate paycheck from a library. They can continue to hone and refine their skills as information professionals no matter where they are and they will continue to be successful if they work towards being business-minded, creative, entrepreneurial and professional. We are never really "done" with the business of learning...
Good luck to all of you recent grads!