by Nicole Usiondek, Head Editor, INALJ Michigan
What Is a Librarian?
I have been fortunate to have a full time professional position for just over six months now. My experience has been that people who are not in the library field typically view librarians in three ways: the boring spinster who likes quiet and books, a desperate professional in a dying field or a cutting-edge information professional. The vast majority of my coworkers, all which are not in the library field, view librarians as essential and needed to assist with their research needs. It is when I am outside of work that I encounter the first two perceptions of a librarian.
One of the most common comments I hear is, “Are all librarians like you?” This is usually in reference to the fact that I am not like the stereotype librarians…but then I do not think most librarians today are like the librarians of the past. This is not to say that there is not the Debbie Downer or Negative Nellie’s in the library field, those types exist in all fields, but today’s librarian embraces change and technology.
My experience has introduced me to library professional that embrace change and technology, people who look for solutions and find joy in the little things in life. These are traits that I admire and hope that I show my fellow professionals. So what is a librarian? A librarian is the harbinger of change. A librarian ensures that everyone has access to information and solutions. A librarian is a teacher, a researcher, a good neighbor, and a professional.