It’s coming to the end of a busy and eventful year. My manager left before the start of this academic year and I have really, really missed her! She interviewed me and hired me back in October 2015 and she was an absolutely fantastic manager, Librarian and mentor. She really helped me to grow into my role at Ashton Sixth Form College and develop my skills as a Librarian. She understood what it was like to be a new professional and most importantly, she understood libraries. She was hands on in the Library and she got stuff done! If I had an issue I could take it to her without a second of hesitation. It has taken a lot of adjustment for me this year as I went full-time, my new manager has a different style of working and key members of the team moved on to pastures new (and were not replaced).
I have been a little down at certain points; worrying about how we are going to cope with the extra workload, the future of the service, as well as having to consider my own happiness in this particular sector. Working in FE is hard, teenagers can be horrible and the work can be thankless! You provide amazing resources for people… then no one to uses them.
Despite the odd down day, I do actually love my job. I’ve met some great students this year who were so appreciative of my help. It’s so nice when people ask for my help, take on board the advice I’ve given and succeed! They gave me a card and a bunch of flowers which was just amazing and healed every down day wound that I’ve acquired this year.
This week I attended the Higher and Adult Education Celebration and received another special thanks from the department and I definitely nearly cried when I had to go up onto the stage. There was also prosecco and cheese which ain’t bad! I think I need to work on managing my emotions a little better and develop a thicker skin because I’ve now realised that people do actually appreciate and notice my work and it has motivated me to work even harder and to continue the great work we’re doing in the Library. For those that don’t appreciate it, I need to use my skills, positive thinking and knowledge to convince them otherwise.
It is a little quieter in the Library and we’ve been planning for next year and we have so many ideas for the Library Service. We have a new referral process for teachers to refer their students to the Library for 1-2-1 info literacy interventions which I am SO excited for.
I’ve been buying new comic books and graphic novels and am going to be running the Excelsior Award with students next year.
We are constantly developing our fiction collection and are going to be running #ReadingAhead again after a few years off (we haven’t run it since I started).
We’re having a more integral role in the delivery of the Extended Project Qualification next year and I am building their course on the Canvas VLE. I am an admin and will be delivering training to teaching staff in a few weeks (another great challenge and learning curve).
I have been invited to take part in a leadership course next year after my name was mentioned at SLT. Only 5 people a year get to do it. I am so thankful for the opportunity. It’s going to help me whilst I am in this role, it will in turn help the service and it’s a great addition to my CV.
I am going to the Youth Libraries Group Conference 2018 to explore reading promotion and fiction which I CANNOT wait for. PHILIP PULLMAN WILL BE THERE!!!
Today I shared and explored our art, design and tech collections with students planning their research for next year. A few projects were a little more complex so I’ve been doing a little research myself this afternoon and will be getting back to the students tomorrow.
The College hosted a FE Research Meet today and I was able to nip to one of the sessions which was delivered by an English teacher who’s College has implemented Accelerated Reading. They’ve embedded a culture of books and reading into college life. I came away inspired and hopeful!
Today we came across several problems with our Library Management System and I investigated and fixed them! Best feeling ever! My technical skills and knowledge of the system is improving all the time and it feels great.
I will never know all there is to know in this profession and that’s what keeps it interesting and exciting. Students come up with mind-boggling requests, our systems break down, and new ideas are always waiting to be discovered and implemented. Solving problems, helping people and sharing knowledge is the absolute best way to spend your day.
P.S. If you’re having a down day, talk about it, it helps! 🙂