Experience Gets Webby: Webinars Give Experience to Job Hunters

by Sarah Deringer, Head Editor, INALJ Mississippi

Experience Gets Webby: Webinars Give Experience
to Job Hunters

december 25 2012As a current MSLS student, the biggest fear I have is not being eligible for the job posting due to lack of experience. I worked part-time at Paoli Public Library in Paoli, Indiana, for a year and eleven months non-consecutively, but because of budgeting problems, I was let go at the beginning of the year. Finding a job locally right now is nearly impossible; I am still on the job hunt. A question that I find myself asking is: how do I gain needed experience when I do not have a job?

The answer to that question, while complicated, may be to gain experience through webinars. Why take a webinar? Many times webinars are free and an easy way to gain knowledge and experience without having a job. Webinars also offer the chance to connect with other professionals in the field, which is highly important in the job search. Therefore, I compiled a list of five websites that I go to when looking for a free webinar.

1.       American Libraries Live (http://americanlibrarieslive.org/)

  • American Libraries Association’s American Libraries offers free webinars throughout the year; the next episode is on March 14 about Safety and Security. All webinars on American Libraries Live begin at 2 pm Eastern Standard Time.


2.       PLA On-Demand Webinars (http://www.ala.org/pla/onlinelearning/webinars/ondemand)

  • Public Library Association offers both priced and free webinars that are available any time, any place; the webinars that do not cost the viewer anything say “FREE” to the right of the link.


3.       OCLC Webjunction (http://webjunction.org/events/webjunction.html)

  • Webjunction offers free webinars throughout the year; the next webinar offered is on February 27 titled “The Future of Online Learning: A Changing Landscape”. This webinar begins at 1 pm Eastern Standard Time. These webinars are archived and available to watch afterwards in case you miss them.


4.       Booklist Online Webinars (http://www.booklistonline.com/webinars)

  • Booklist Online offers free webinars and archived webinars since 2009; the next webinar offered is on February 19 titled “YA Announcements: Spring Sneak Peek”. This webinar begins at 2 pm Eastern Standard Time. For this webinar, Booklist Online is partnering with various publishers, such as Disney Book Group, Zondervan, Bloomsbury, Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group, TOR Teen, and Sourcebooks Fire.


5.       LinkedIn (http://help.linkedin.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/530)

  • For users of the professional social networking site LinkedIn, free webinars are offered for best practices. The webinars are offered at various times, and in order to get e-mailed instructions on how to attend, you must register for the webinar at least 24 hours in advance.


While I only listed five places I go to for webinars, there are many more websites in which to gain experience. You can search on Google.com for “free webinars,” which will bring many results. A final tip for those that are serious about gaining experience through webinars: you can add this experience to your resume under a section titled “Specialized Training” or “Training.” Make sure to add the title of the webinar, the name of the webinar host (company or person), and the date in which you attended the webinar. This tip can also be used for seminars.

Get rid of the fear, and good luck in gaining experience via webinars!

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) and former CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of T160K.org, a crowdfunding platform focused on African patrimony, heritage and cultural projects. INALJ was founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard. Its 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. INALJ has had over 21 Million page hits and helped many, many thousands of librarians 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 one month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this with many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro and many other publications in the past decade. She presents whenever she can, including serving on three panels at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Las Vegas; as breakout presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa; as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting; at the National Press Club in Washington DC; McGill University in Montreal, Canada; the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has been living and working in Budapest, Hungary and Western New York State. She spent years running her husband’s moving labor website, fixed and sold old houses and assisted her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food. She is preparing to re-enter the workforce and is job hunting. Her husband is now the co-editor of INALJ, a true support!  She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.