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Forward Looking Statement

March 5, 2010

There have been a lot of requests for more information from me about other classes to take. A little history is in order; I started the MLIS program in 2006 with the intention of getting a degree so that I could eventually move up in the OCPL system (become a librarian, then branch manager, etc.). At the time I was a part-time library clerk and had just returned to the work world after 5 years of stay-at-home parenting. I took LIBR 240 in Spring of 2007 and my life was changed forever. I knew I’d found something I really liked and could never get enough of until my fingers were too gnarled with age to tap on a keyboard. After that I took PHP/MySQL, XML, AJAX and LIBR 242 (database management). Also, there are courses on JavaScript and PERL that I wish I had taken but had to learn on my own.

When I figured out that I needn’t take another library course, I didn’t. I figured I worked in a public library (and had become a Library Assistant which is a reference librarian without the degree) and my experience was worth more than class work. The only problem with this path was I lacked course evidence for my e-portfolio for things like collection development, cataloging, and intellectual freedom. Anyone who wants to just take technical courses should keep this in mind.

Finally, in the Fall of 2007 Heather Ebey hired me as a Graduate Assistant (paid position, ~$14/hr); I worked for her until I graduated in Fall of 2008. During the summer of 2008 Linda Main asked me to build a CMS to automate the greensheet process; for this I got 6 units of credit. I learned a lot in a very short time from Heather. SLIS uses the LAMP bundle so I got production experience with Apache, Linux, MySQL and PHP. This was by far the most valuable experience of my life, and I got paid to learn!

So, a teaser: right now Heather has 4 GAs and has recently hired a new one named Amber Toland. Heather asks me for candidates when hiring; when GAs graduate they can no longer work for the university, so there is a lot of turnover in the position. In many ways students are auditioning when they take LIBR 240, but don’t know it.

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