The following article is a guest post.
Librarians used to wear sweaters and glasses. Now they should wear superhero capes. Successful librarians are part techie, part teacher, and part agent for change. Long gone are the days of collecting fines and enforcing the code of silence. In the digital age, librarians have seen their roles, and their opportunities, grow tremendously.
Combat Information Overload
Well-informed citizens can make positive impacts on society.
Benjamin Franklin felt strongly enough about the importance of information to start a library. Then, books were scarce and only the wealthy usually had access to them.
Today, the situation is reversed. More people have access to more information than ever. In fact, there is so much content produced by so many sources, it can seem overwhelming. From trying to locate legitimate sources to maintaining focus, it can sometimes seem an impossible task.
Librarians can help. They can assist with research on sources, both online and in print publications. They can sift through the numerous search hits and locate the most helpful sources. Even better, they can provide pointers on how to evaluate source materials for use during future research.
Promote Technical Literacy
Librarians know more than just books. They have experience with both software and hardware. At schools, they help students with computer issues of both varieties. School librarians are often the ones coordinating technology use.
They promote technology at public libraries too. They often coordinate tech help times. For example, a local library might schedule a teen tech night, where adults can bring their new devices to have librarian-supervised teens provide education and assistance. These libraries also provide access to computers and the internet for those that may not have them at home.
The demand for people with strong communication and information management skills continues to grow. If you are looking are exploring career options, consider earning an advanced degree. Schools like USC and others have innovative programs that can prepare you for both public and private sector roles.
Provide Equal Opportunity Access
Libraries are a natural place where people can hone their skills. From teen reader clubs to toddler story time, library staff members encourage young readers. Some create programs to promote literacy for recent immigrants learning a new language and culture.
Being a librarian can be the best combination of teacher, advocate and chief information officer. If this type of engaging, evolving career sounds appealing explore your education options. You may prefer learning in-person and choose an on-campus program. If your schedule doesn’t allow for that, USC’s library degree program is online.
Schools with these remote study options let you pursue a degree in a way that more flexibly fits your schedule.
Expand Career Opportunities
Students with management degrees in library and information science do have employment paths outside of traditional libraries. Earning this type of management degree opens up more options than many people realize. Gaining this degree opens up possibilities in places such as business and government.
If you are thinking about a career change, think about becoming a librarian. You may not get a superhero cape upon graduation, but you will have the skills and training to make a positive impact in the lives of many people.