My interview with success story, Rosalyn
Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Rosalyn : A former superior approached me earlier this year about taking on a customer service assessment and improvement project in the FMCSA. When I found out my contract at the NTL was ending September 30, I followed up on it, and was hired in October by Phase One Consulting Group, which is the contractor on this project.
Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Rosalyn : I have a special place in my heart for my first public library in Hillsdale, an old mansion with creaky floors and bookshelves crammed in everywhere.
Naomi: Favorite book?
Rosalyn : Couldn’t pick just one, but I have a long-term relationship with the works of Laura Ingalls Wilder dating back to before I could read, when I got “Little House in the Big Woods” from my grandparents for my 5th birthday. I read a lot of mysteries, from the classics like Dorothy L. Sayers to current favorites like Jacqueline Winspear and Charles Todd.
Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Rosalyn : I’m just old enough to remember filing index cards in my college library’s card catalog for hours on end, before they had an online catalog. This is not a time I would like to go back to. Also, journal indices in print were a huge time- and space-suck. However, my last few jobs would simply not have been possible without government internet sites. I can’t imagine having to look up everything in (out-of-date) print sources all over town, rather than just doing a few quick searches or browses.
Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Rosalyn: I get a kick out of the Love the Liberry blog: http://lovetheliberry.blogspot.com/. When I was doing reference it was a good source of . . . perspective.
Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Rosalyn : Only once have I ever gotten a job through seeing an ad in the paper and applying (although it was the best job). So, I’d say look into staffing agencies, keep in touch with former colleagues, get involved in associations, make sure your technical skills are current, and keep looking. Lots of people are looking for work right now, and not necessarily because they are doing something wrong. It’s tough out there.
Rosalyn Alleman grew up in Hillsdale, MI the daughter of an academic librarian and a teacher, and she spent a lot of time in libraries, including working in a college library her senior year in high school. She also worked in a library through college, and pictured herself in a career in academic libraries. Rosalyn moved to the Washington, DC area from Virginia to get her MLS at the University of Maryland, and stayed around for the job opportunities (none of which were academic). She worked in a variety libraries and information centers until 2003, when she was hired as a contractor for the National Transportation Library at the US DOT. For 9 1/2 years she provided e-mail and telephone reference services to the transportation industry, government clients and the public. She is currently employed as a consultant in customer service to the DOT’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.