Sunday, April 29, 2018

Thing 21: Professional Groups

I'm choosing option 4.

4. Are you a member of a professional organisation?  If so, write a reflective blog post on your experience with this organisation and the impact it may have on your CPD.  For example, has it provided you with the opportunity to be involved in any committees?  At what level is your involvement?  Have you gained any project/time/event management skills?  Have you attended/presented at conferences through this organisation?  Has it increased your library network and knowledge base?  Are you happy with the organisation?  Would you like to be more involved - can you investigate this possibility i.e. join a local committee, apply for your Associateship (your Rudaí 23 work load and digital badges will prove excellent evidence of your CPD activities if you apply for your LAI Associateship).  If you are not a member, what has held you back, is it awareness, funding or a time issue?

I'm a member of the LAI. When I worked in health libraries I was an active member of the HSLG and I was on the committee of the CDG for two years, including as Secretary for the last few months. I was really impressed by the work ethic of the CDG. Also, I had been on another committee for years and devoted a lot of time and energy to it so when I joined the CDG I took a back seat and learned about it before taking on many tasks. It was a large group and there was time as a new member to take it in. I preferred helping before or after events than during them. During them I'm better at talking to people. I organised a post-event survey and I marked answers at a table quiz as part of an event. I took the minutes on a number of occasions. As Secretary, I sent out the agenda. I liked being organised in this way. I applied for accreditation from the LAI for one of our events. I was really impressed by someone who could generate great ideas and catchy titles for events!

As for the HSLG, when I started in health libraries I had so much to learn. It was my first professional library job and I had been working as a clerical officer before then and my library work was limited to a summer in the public libraries over 6 years earlier. I learned so much from the group. I was a solo librarian, though did have a library assistant colleague for the first few years and also another librarian who worked in a different part of the organisation. The HSLG has a great ListServ where you can post queries. I attended many HSLG conferences. I got to know many wonderful librarians. They are inspiring. They are very aware of the need for self-advocacy (as am I). I gave a lightening presentation at one of their conferences and did a poster presentation at an A&SL conference and gave a short talk at a WRSLAI conference. These were valuable experiences. I won a poster competition (co-won) organised by the HSLG. It was about promoting the role of your health librarian. The HSLG printed up copies of my poster for everyone! I asked my boss to be in a photo with me which I sent around the organisation!

I would have liked to be on the committee of the HSLG but I'm no longer working in health libraries. I moved to public libraries and I love it. I would like to be more involved and if I see any call outs I'll consider them carefully. I don't feel there is the same level of engagement that I was used to from the HSLG. Maybe the need isn't there. I would like to apply for Associateship of the LAI at some stage and to do PKSB. I forgot about it when doing up my PCP. Maybe another time.

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