Future Librarian At Work

Future Librarian At Work

And so as 2019 races on, I continue to be terrible at blogging, which will come as no surprise to anybody. I am genuinely considering amalgamating my two blogs, so that I only have one to fail at maintaining, but I’m not actually sure how to combine the archives and I feel like ultimately that would probably be a bad idea, so I guess we’ll just leave things as they are for now.

(Well, apart from the name change that will be happening asap. If you follow me on Twitter or Tumblr, you’ll notice I’m now @finnlongman on both. Instagram, this blog, Facebook, and Youtube will be changing in the near future. You’ve been warned.)

I’ve got some news, though!

Remember how last year I was applying for graduate library traineeships, but didn’t end up getting any? Well, I decided to apply again this year, because I have more experience now, and it seemed like experience was the thing I was lacking. Besides which, I’ve started appreciating academic libraries even more now that I no longer have access to one, because wow I miss it, so I figured I wanted in on that library life.

Well, I got a traineeship! (I actually got two, and had to choose. It was stressful.) As of September, I’ll be the graduate trainee librarian at Christ’s College Cambridge.

Obviously, I’m super excited about it. I’ll get to work with old books, I’ll get to work with new books, I’ll learn all the complicated bits of librarianship that I have managed to get this far without knowing… It’s a fantastic opportunity, and the team at Christ’s seem really nice, so I’m looking forward to being a part of that and getting to work with them.

I’m also really looking forward to moving back to Cambridge. (People my age! Folk music! Bookshops! LGBTQ+ people! Studios I can hire for dance practice!) I have no idea where I’m going to live and admittedly that’s a bit of a concern, but I’ll figure it out. There are a few things I still have to resolve, like dance, but I’m confident I’ll find solutions to them.

I’m nervous about it all as well, too. Working full time and living independently will be a big transition. I’m hoping I manage to find work between now and September, so that I’m not going from 0-60 in no time, because I think that would be too much of a shock to the system. But even if I do, it’ll still be a difficult change, and I know that.

Still, the positives outweigh my concerns, and it’s also a relief to have secured this so early in the year. Not only do I know what I’m doing for the academic year 2019-20, so I can actually make plans for once in my life, but I don’t have to apply for any more traineeships, because I’m done! I just have to apply for shorter-term stuff, which is usually less difficult…

Anyway, that’s a big piece of news for me. I’m sure as it approaches I’ll talk about it more, but I just figured I’d update those of you who hadn’t already seen it on other social media.

Someone once said that the main audience for The Toast included queer librarians and stay-at-home medievalists. Although we (tragically) live in a post-Toast world, these labels are still excellent ways to describe me, and while currently I fall more under the stay-at-home medievalist category, I look forward to my transition to queer librarian.

7 thoughts on “Future Librarian At Work

  1. I’m so glad you got this traineeship!! You’re going to be an epic librarian and so hoping it leads to more opportunities that you want 🤗

  2. Have you considered living in the stacks? If it’s anything like libraries I’ve worked in, there will be plenty of forgotten nooks that could be turned into a sleeping space.

    While it’s greatest advantage is of course having unassailable bookworm cred, it also means you have next to zero commute so don’t waste energy on the unpaid but tedious gap between home and work.

  3. Woo, well done! Sorry if it’s a silly question, but what does a library traineeship involve/what will you be doing? ‘Cause I assume it’s more than just checking out books and other librarian duties.

    1. Tbh, since they have self service machines there’s very little checking out books, haha. It’s kind of all areas of a college librarian’s job: cataloguing and processing, shelving, book acquisitions, helping students with research, supervising researchers who come in to use special collections, putting together exhibitions… At a college like Christ’s you also get to work with the old books (their collection starts from the 11th century!) and there are usually some ongoing projects with that, like cataloguing certain archive material, or something. The traineeship side refers to the training you get on the job, and learning how cataloguing works and all the complicated bits of librarianship. Overall, it’s aimed at gaining the knowledge and experience needed to go on to a master’s in library science or similar.

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