by Courtney Baron, Head Editor, INALJ Georgia
5 Things I’ve Learned as a INALJ Head Editor
1) It’s hard to get a library job.
You probably know this already, but it’s especially obvious when you search for jobs in your state five days a week! It’s not so much that jobs aren’t out there (see #5), but finding the right job can be difficult.
2) You really do need the degree.
Of course, there is always an exception, but I’ve found more professional jobs than paraprofessional jobs and they all list the MLIS degree as a minimum requirement. So, those of who you have the degree, keep your head up. Opportunities are out there. If you are on the fence about going to library school, just know that, regardless of the pros and cons, it really will limit your chances of getting a library job if you decide not to go.
3) You must be willing to either:
– work part-time
– work non-traditional hours
– work or relocate to a less desirable location
Often, when professional librarian jobs pop up, they are part-time, require evenings and weekends, and/or are located in a less than desirable area (which I define as an area in which I personally would not want to live). You will likely have to put up with undesirable hours or work part-time in order to get your foot in the door.
4) You must look outside the box.
INALJ strives to include non-traditional library jobs and I’ve found so many from places I would never have thought to look if I wasn’t posting jobs on a regular basis. For example, Turner Broadcasting is based in Atlanta and I’ve posted numerous job openings applicable to LIS professionals.
5) Don’t give up.
If you don’t see the right job today or end up the unlucky finalist at what felt like the perfect job, don’t fret! If there is anything I’ve learned during the past year of posting jobs, it’s that there are more out there than I originally thought. I post roughly 20-40 unique jobs a week for the Georgia page but larger states can have a couple hundred! Sure, it’s a tough market, but odds are the right job will pop up before you know it.