Rebecca Borowski …In Six

My interview with my former colleague Rebecca Borowski!



Naomi: If you could take any of your hobbies and create a job out of them or integrate it into your job what would it be? And how?
Rebecca: I love taking pictures of food/restaurants, cooking, parties, friends, events, art and nature. I also take pictures of retreats, birthdays, luncheons and celebrations at work. I love writing poetry, especially when I am inspired by the beauty in nature-it is a spiritual experience for me. I imagine that creating a blog or managing a website that incorporates all of these things would be a fun job! My ideal job would be planning diversity/student events on a college campus, documenting those events and then promoting them on a website!

Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Rebecca: Ithaca College Library ;)

Naomi: Favorite book(s)?
Rebecca: Charles Bukowski poetry, Czesław Miłosz poetry, The Zookeeper’s Wife by Diane Ackerman, The Awakening by Kate Chopin, This Way for the Gas, Ladies and Gentleman by Tadeusz Borowski, A Day in the life of Ivan Denisovich by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Naomi: What blogs should we all be following?
Rebecca: In my department in the library (Access Services) we use a blog to communicate with our student assistants. Students use the blog to access their schedule, sign in and out of shifts and post sub requests. The blog also contains training materials for students and student managers. We feature a “Student of the Week” section so that our student assistants can get to know each other better, building a sense of community. It’s a great way to keep information in one place and we update regularly. Student assistants are required to read the blog at the beginning of each shift. I follow several organizations on Facebook such as the Human Rights Campaign, LGBTQ Nation, NoH8 Campaign, Transgender Training & Advocacy, National Geographic, World Wildlife Fund, Society for Human Resource Management and HigherEdJobs.com.

Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Rebecca: The employees (both staff and student assistants) who work in libraries!

Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Rebecca: Proofread your cover letter and résumé. I have served on 8 search committees for staff positions in the past 5 years and am always surprised by the poor writing of applicants. Even a simple mistake can make a big difference. If you work on a college campus you can have career counselors from the Career Services office read your materials and offer advice. Put your most professional face forward. Limit the number of people who can see your Facebook page and edit your Facebook profile. Create a LinkedIn account that highlights your accomplishments and goals and update your employee profile on your company/organization’s website. If your potential employers do a Google search for you they will find consistent and positive information about you that matches your application materials.

Rebecca has worked at Ithaca College Library for five years and obtained her M.S Communications from Ithaca College in 2010. At the library she interviews, trains and supervises students in the Access Services department, in addition to processing reserves & e-reserves for faculty. She currently chairs the Diversity Awareness Committee and serves on the President’s Advisory Committee on Diversity working with senior leadership to achieve diversity goals. Rebecca also works with HR on the Work/Life Action Team to help support wellness initiatives. Her career goal is to do diversity work in Human Resources.

She is also interested in developing diversity programming in higher education in the division of Student Engagement/Multicultural Affairs. Rebecca is passionate about being ally to the LGBTQ community and works each year to plan the Rainbow Reception recognizing LGBT and allied graduating seniors and grad students at Ithaca College.

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular webzine and jobs list INALJ.com (formerly I Need a Library Job). Founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard, INALJ’s social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ.com. INALJ has had over 19.5 Million page views and helped thousands of librarians and LIS folk find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in a month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 & 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro. She presents whenever she can, most recently thrice at the American Library Association's Annual Conference as well as breakout talk presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa and as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting, at the National Press Club, McGill University, the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She was a 2013 Library Journal Mover & Shaker and has served on the University of Maryland iSchool Board from 2014-2017. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has relocated to being nomadic. She runs her husband’s moving labor website, KhanMoving.com, fixes and sells old houses and assists her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food as well. She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.