I can’t believe it’s been a month since I graduated from library school on December 13! (Photos here.) It’s been a busy month, which included a vacation (photos), getting a new car, and a  trip to Alabama (photos) to visit my parents for Christmas. As much as I enjoyed the process of earning my MLS, I must admit I’m so relieved to be done! It’s really hit home this week, since I’m not attending class and no longer thinking about studying and assignment deadlines.

My “free time” still seems to be plenty busy, but it’s nice to be concentrating on other things. I actually finished a couple of books over the weekend, which was a treat! I’m looking forward to taking better care of myself, which includes more time for exercise and  healthy eating. (One of my goals is to become a better cook!)

Several people have asked if I plan to continue and get a PhD. While I enjoyed grad school, by and large, I’m done. I do plan to continue learning, but at this point, I can’t wait to use what I’ve learned “in the field!” (I’ve already picked up a shift at the Help Desk at the library, shadowing a subject librarian on Thursday afternoons!) Sometimes I wish I’d started grad school earlier so the PhD would’ve made more sense. Truth be told, though, all of my work experience really helped in the classroom. Now I’m ready to forge ahead with other things!

I plan to attend ALA Midwinter in Chicago later this month, ACRL 2015 in Portland, and ALA Annual later this year. If you’ll be at any of these conferences too, let’s do coffee!

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All Done with Grad School!

I finally finished my final assignments of graduate school this past Monday, December 1! I had to give a presentation on my paper for Government Publications class, but it went well enough. During my presentation, I clicked on a picture on the overhead, turned around to the class and noticed the dean of the library school had joined us! 😛 The picture happened to be a photo in one of Durham County Library’s digital collections of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., visiting Durham back in the 196os. The dean jumped right into the discussion! (I’d been dragging a little, but that perked me up!)

Afterward class–no party, no fireworks, but I didn’t mind. It was great to get home and crash!

On Tuesday, I picked up my cap, gown, and lemon yellow hood. Final grades were posted on Wednesday. Now that the weekend is here, it’s finally dawning on me that I’m homework-free! Wow!

Meanwhile, a couple of Saturdays ago, I had an appointment with an acquaintance who Lesley Looperhas her own photography business. I’d decided I needed some headshots for professional websites and such. I was a little self conscious at first, but after it was over, I was glad I’d done it! This is one of the headshots.

Graduation’s a week from tomorrow, on December 13th. I’ll be sure to take pictures and share!

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Portland Bound!

PortlandA few months ago, a former library school classmate (who’s now a librarian) asked if I’d be part of a panel proposal based on an article he and two of his librarian colleagues published, called “Factors that Increase the Probability of a Successful Academic Library Job Search.” Their panel proposal went to a committee that decided programs for the upcoming ACRL (Association of College and Research Libraries) conference next March in Portland, Oregon. I’m excited to say the panel proposal was accepted, and I’ll be heading to Portland in March to join the rest of the panel! The name of the panel session is, “Sustaining the Profession: Trends, Demand, and Mentorship for the Academic Library Job Search.” We don’t know the day/time slot yet, so I haven’t made travel plans yet, but am really looking forward to returning to Portland, as well as attending the ACRL Conference for the first time!


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Highlight from Maps LibGuide Project

I recently created and presented a LibGuide on maps for my Government Publications class, and this YouTube video about maps got several oohs and aahs from my classmates, so I thought I’d share it here too!


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Fall Semester Update

I received an email from the library school today, letting me know I’ve been cleared to Graduationgraduate in December, pending successful completion of this semester’s classes! I’ve got miles to go between now and December 1, when my final assignments are due, but it was still nice to get the email reminder that things are falling into place. I’ve ordered my cap, gown, and hood (lemon yellow for library science) already.

I’m taking Government Publications this semester, plus doing a practicum in serials cataloging, to finish  my final 6 credit hours. It’s turned out to be a busier semester than I imagined, but I’ve got to get ‘er done! I just have 8 more class sessions to attend (with October 13 off for fall break), down to single digits! Wow. I have a libguide (and accompanying presentation) due on Monday, and it’ll be about maps using government information. I still have a way to go on it, but at least I’ve started. It’ll be a busy weekend!

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Research Methods Class

classI’ve completed a week and a half of Research Methods class in Summer Session II, and it’s intense! There are six of us in the on-campus class, and some of the online students join us virtually on occasion. I like the small class, partly because there’s a lot of discussion. One of the interesting things about this class is that is the first time since my first semester that I’m in a class with everyone for the first time. (I knew almost everyone in the class already, it’s just I hadn’t had a class with any of them yet.) Continue reading

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Countdown to ALA

Day after tomorrow, I’m Vegas bound for the American Library Association’s Annual Conference! It’ll be my first trip to Las Vegas, and while I’ll be quite busy with conference stuff most of the time, I’m taking a little time out for some fun local stuff, including an evening tour at the Neon Museum! I’ve heard it’s a great way to learn some local Las Vegas history, as well as a place to get some neat photos.  The Neon Museum gives limited tours during the summer months, because most of the tour is in their outdoor “Neon Boneyard,” and it’s hot, hot, hot in Las Vegas in June.  Stay tuned for photos of the Neon Museum–and the rest of the conference!

Oh, I just looked at the clock! Time to get off the computer and work on getting ready! My suitcases won’t pack themselves, will they?!

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Getting Ready for Summer School

I paid for summer school today, the last summer school I’ll have to pay for, which is pretty classroom_2exciting! The text book I ordered via Amazon earlier this week arrived yesterday, so things are falling into place. Summer Session II doesn’t start until July 1, but I’m heading to ALA Annual the last few days of June, so I’m working hard to get things ready for both summer school and my trip. Thank goodness, my class doesn’t meet for the first time until the day after I get back from Las Vegas, so I’ll be able to get some rest.


Clipart from

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Better Luck Next Time

In the past few days, I learned that our ALA Student Chapter of the Year nomination didn’t make the cut; neither did the Hack Library School ALA Conversation Starter proposal I contributed to.  I learned some things from both, though, and hope to be part of other ALA presentation proposals in the future.

Speaker Camp

Speaker Camp

While gaining experience and talking with others who have done presentations at ALA and other conferences will be the most helpful, I’ve been searching for other resources too. I’ve discovered a book on Amazon (but not in the library *yet*) called Speaker Camp: A Self-paced Workshop for Planning, Pitching, Preparing and Presenting at Conferences, that looks promising, so I’ve added it to my Amazon Wish List. I’ve also renewed my membership to Blue Devil Toastmasters.


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Waiting for News

desk_calendar_3Last month, I applied for a couple of things with library-school related groups, both with “early April” notification. One is being part of a Conversation Starter on library advocacy with the Hack Library School bloggers at the ALA Annual Conference this summer, and the other is the ALA Student Chapter of the Year Award. Good thing I’m busy with full-time work as well as my library school assignments, or the waiting would be driving me bananas!

Working on the Conversation Starter proposal with other HLS bloggers was a creative process that made me glad I’ve gotten to meet such a cool group of library students from across the nation this academic year! I’ve learned so much from them.

The Student Chapter of the Year Award nomination was a culmination of our chapter’s activities and awards for the academic year. It was the first time my library school’s ALA Student Chapter has applied for the award since I’ve been there, and maybe it’s the first time ever. While we’ve done some really good things this year, the completed nomination form made me wish we could’ve done even more. In the big scheme of things, though, it made us look at all we’ve accomplished over two semesters, and hopefully give next year’s officers some ideas.

Stay tuned!

Clipart from

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