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Naomi House’s interview with success story Diana.
Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Diana: My best friend works at a large corporate bank, and she immediately called me when a position opened up. It wasn’t at all what I was looking for, but she made it sound really exciting. I’ve been in the position for just over two weeks now and I’m still trying to see what transferable skills I can gain and what I learn about myself and my interests. This is something completely different!
Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Diana: For general public library, the Monroe County Public Library in Bloomington, IN, is amazing. The people there are so helpful, and it was there that I learned what a librarian should be: helpful, kind, and open. For the sheer beauty of it, the Long Room at Trinity College Dublin is breath- taking (and you get to learn all about the history of manuscript production in Ireland and see the Book of Kells). I also have a soft spot in my heart for the Carpenter Library at Bryn Mawr College.
Naomi: Favorite book?
Diana: I hate this question! It’s like asking a parent to pick their favorite child. I’m always in the mood for a book by Sarah Addison Allen or Neil Gaiman (that man isn’t an author, he’s a storyteller). I’m also never without a book of Keats poetry. Oh, and I make everyone I know read Perfume: A Murder by Patrick Süskind. I could go on…
Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Diana: I think I’m most drawn to the possibilities. You have all this information available to you, so much you can learn! Every day brings new possibilities for patron interactions and stumbling on something new. I also just really love the concept of facilitating access to information. I get really excited by new technologies and what they could mean, though I’m also wary about jumping the gun on implementing anything new until everything’s been examined and thought through.
Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Diana: My blog! No (though you can, if you want), but seriously, I don’t read many blogs at the moment (mainly healthy-living blogs), and my one suggestion for a website is INALJ, which seems a moot suggestion since people are reading this there. I’ve been job searching for five years, I really haven’t had time to get into blogs and websites and such. I have time now, though!
Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Diana: I’m learning more and more that it really is who you know. Networking is so important, and it’s a lot easier than most people think it is. All you have to do is be open and kind and talk to people. Don’t worry about selling yourself; that’s not what draws people to you anyway. Just be kind, listen (really listen, don’t just hear), and be helpful. People will respond in kind.
Diana La Femina finished her MLS in December 2007 from Indiana University in Bloomington.She specialized in rare books librarian and has job searched for over five years, though one of those years was spent in Ireland pursuing a second degree. She’s the head editor for theINALJ South Carolina page and a self-proclaimed librarian extraordinaire (it’s on her business card). She just got a job outside the field as an Executive Assistant to someone high up in a large corporate bank. She loves reading (of course), BBC shows (Sherlock!), Doctor Who, and drinking copious amounts of tea.
Previously published on 3/27/13