Thursday, December 01, 2005

Librarian on the Verge

I am currently looking for a position in the library world. What position I am not entirely sure. I am an unemployed woman in an urban cityscape, so it should not be too hard, right? Wrong.

I have taken to removing the fact that I have an MLIS from my resume for many positions, because not all of the positions I am applying for are "technically" librarian jobs. For example, I recently applied for a position as a circulation clerk in a financially struggling library, so much so that people heard about it throughout the country. The manager I interviewed with was fairly glowing about me during my interview. She does not have an MLIS and I tried to underemphasize it. Both of the people interviewing me just glowed about my resume, and we had a chat about what it means to be a "librarian" vs. "a paraprofessional." I just want to be able to start somewhere. I got a personally signed letter from her a couple of weeks later saying they had chosen someone else. And I am sure it was not a person with a "professional" degree.

Library journal made it abundently clear in its article "The Entry Level Gap": there just are not the jobs out there. When there is a position open, hundreds of more applicants have more experience and training than me. And there is the conundrum. I will never get training and experience if I can never get a job.

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