Reflection

My overall purpose for completing a Master of Science in Information Sciences degree is to pursue librarian positions in the public library. My experience in the Information Science field by way of the public library has spanned over 10 years. When I combine the MSIS degree with my current supervisory experience as a public library paraprofessional manager, I should be able to achieve managerial positions in the librarian category. These positions include Librarian Department Head, Assistant Branch Manager, and Branch Manager.

Goal #1 = Establish required skills for managing library collections and material. This includes knowledge of patron reading trends that will assist in how material is ordered and discarded.

Goal #2 = Understand supervisory competences including staff scheduling, policies and procedures, and resolving solutions.

Goal #3 = Achieving skills for mentoring and advising subordinate personnel in a positive way. This demonstrates leadership skills and the ability to encourage staff.

Timeline to becoming an information professional:

November 2004 → Hired as a Human Resources Assistant with the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District.
May 2009 → Promoted to Computer Lab Department Head at the Spring Valley Library Branch of the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District.
November 2011 → Awarded American Library Association Spectrum Scholarship.
September 2012 → Enrolled in the Master of Science in Information Sciences Graduate Degree Program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
October 2015 → Final ePortfolio presentation.

My unusual route to library school

The most significant time that I’ve spent has been in the Bay Area of Northern California. After graduating high school, I joined the U. S. Air Force. The combination of military experience and education earned me an Associate’s in Applied Science in Information Systems Technology. I enrolled in a 4-year degree program at National American University. During this time,  I made multiple deployments to Iraq in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Once I completed my Bachelor of Science Degree in Applied Management, my 4-year military enlistment was up. After my honorable discharge, I transferred to the U. S. Air Force Reserves and relocated to the nearest metropolitan area with the best weather (Las Vegas, NV).

To my surprise, I struggled to gain civilian employment until I attended a veterans’ assistant job fair. At this job fair, I met a retired Army Sergeant Major who was a recruiter for the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District. He encouraged me to apply for a job in the human resources department. I gained valuable human resources experience and I decided to pursue a MBA degree with the University of Phoenix. Although I completed a Master of Business Administration in Human Resources Management degree in 2006, three years surpassed without me successfully achieving promotional opportunities. During this time, many administration leaders of the library district were encouraging me to attend library school. They said that I could help fill a gap in the lack of minorities in the library and information science profession but I dreaded going back to graduate school.

With the Information Technology background that I have, I was able to get promoted in the computer center department. This placed me away from administration and into the public services of the library district. I was immediately impressed with this new perspective of library services. The constant interaction with the public in helping their needs was very rewarding to me. Working in a public library as a career became my new goal so I enrolled in the MSIS program at the University of Tennessee.

The skills gained in the Master of Science in Information Sciences program has provided the foundation for my public library profession. My previous education and experience will not be wasted however and should expand opportunities in the information science field. I’m confident that my skills and experience will assist me in gaining public library management positions in the near future. It may ultimately lead to me returning home to the Bay Area as an information science professional. My Learning Outcomes and Achievements have paved the way for my path to success.

 

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