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Career Story: Youth Services Librarian In A Suburban Library

Youth Services Librarian In A Suburban Library

Job Title: Youth Services Librarian

Type of Company: I work at a large public library in a suburb of Raleigh, North Carolina.

Education: BA, Ohio Wesleyan University •• MLS, University of Maryland, College Park

Previous Experience: I worked in fundraising.

Job Tasks: Each day is a little different and each week is different. I review books when new ones arrive. I also suggest books to our Collection Development department. I serve on committees that do work for the entire library system. I share a desk with two other staff members in our staff workroom. I also work at our Youth Services desk and help patrons with their questions. I help patrons find books of interest, on their reading level, for information. I also do online research using a variety of databases. I teach the patrons how they can do this themselves at home. I plan activities for children and teens that are fun and interesting, manage teen volunteers, manage the teen advisory board for the library, visit schools to encourage kids to get library cards, create fliers and brochures. I often teach people how to do research and use Microsoft Office. There are many people who visit the library who do not have access to a computer at home. I sometimes help people write their resumes or fill out job applications online.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is working with kids, seeing them grow up, getting kids excited about reading, planning activities and programs, working with other librarians. I have very flexible hours that allow me to do other stuff. I work one weekend per month and one night per week, in addition to my regular hours, doing 45 hours per week in toto. I do not get paid for my lunch hour.

The worst part of the job is the salary which is not very good. But money isn't everything. I also think we should work 40 hours and get paid for our lunch time as other organizations do.

Job Tips: Visit a library. Walk around and observe what is going on. Talk with several librarians and ask them what they like or dislike. Volunteering at the library is particularly helpful. It gives you hands-on experience and allows you to learn how things work. One hour per week is good; more is always better.

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