Stephanie Bennett …In Six

My interview with success story Stephanie


Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Stephanie: I have to confess, it’s an archives job. And – I applied for it! Truly, I didn’t have any connections at the institution, so I wrote up a cover letter and had my advisor/job guru look it over. One call back and one half-day job interview later – ta da! All the cover letters, interviewing practice, and work on my resume before that helped polish the rough edges and also made me feel more at ease when interviewing.

Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Stephanie: I know librarians aren’t supposed to be to attached books or libraries – but it’s okay if archivists are, right?! I love public libraries because they’re how I get my goodreads, but I have a warm fondness for Wake Forest University’s ZSR library, for its comfy couches on the sixth floor and its excellent programming.

Naomi: Favorite book?
Stephanie: Wallace Stegner’s Angle of Repose is so so beautiful, but I also have a soft spot for YA. I re-read A Murder For Her Majesty by Beth Hilgartner every time I need some child-spice in my life and love Steve Kluger’s My Most Excellent Year (set in Boston!).

Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Stephanie: I love the values of librarianship – to provide equal and private access to information for all. This goes for archives too! I try not to be too attached to the library itself because I think it’s important to remember that it’s what I do as an information professional that makes me (and all of us!) awesome, not just the library and its shelves.

Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Stephanie: I just discovered this pinterest feed this morning, courtesy of ArchivesInfo. My friend Cressida posts book-pun-y recipes at All’s Well That Tastes Well. I love Design Crush for its creativity, and perhaps some of her projects could be repurposed for LIS settings. I might be biased, but I love the Simmons GSLIS student blogs. Karen Walrond’s blog Chookooloonks is great for general life inspiration, especially for women. And Ask A Manager’s site has realistic advice on innumerable job scenarios.

Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Stephanie: Be yourself! You’re going to be at this job for a while, hopefully, so make sure that it’s a good fit for your personality by behaving like yourself and asking questions about what you think is important. At the same time, be the best version of yourself. If this means having other people read over your cover letter or seeking input about your good/bad habits in interviews, do it, even if it’s scary.

Before receiving her MSLIS with an Archives specialization in May 2012 from Simmons College GSLIS, Stephanie was a corporate research analyst at two DC-based firms. As of June 1, she is a temporary archives assistant at a Boston-area college’s special collections library. Stephanie is also an active member of New England Archivists and the Society of American Archivists. In her free time, Stephanie discusses YA literature with her friends, drinks gin, and bakes delicious and occasionally healthy, treats. Catch her on twitter!

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 20.5 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. 

Tags: