21 September 2004

How to Surviving Library School

  1. Never take it seriously. However, you will still learn a lot.
  2. Take off at least one class per semester--drink beer or cook yourself an elaborate meal or take a bath or dance sweaty and naked at a popular club instead. If you go every week, you will drive yourself nuts!
  3. Hold your nose and dive into cataloging. Once you understand it, it will be clear. I once spent 12 hours studying cataloging in one day. Ow.
  4. Take as many different kinds of classes as possible. I have taken classes in Readers' Advisory, YA Services, Marketing of Libraries, Online Research, Archives & Manuscripts.
  5. Before taking classes, ask around. Library students, like librarians, are usually friendly and will offer you advice about classes.
  6. Keep up-to-date on what's happening in the library world.
  7. Join library associations--most organizations have student rates which are WAY cheaper. ALA is about $25 or $30 (can't remember), and I also belong to SLA, NYLA, and the New York Library Club. Once you graduate, they're a lot more $$$.
  8. Learn to love ALA and RLIN and OCLC and MARC and YALSA and etc etc etc. You will soon learn what all of these mean, that is, if you enroll.
  9. Get the Nancy Pearl Librarian Action Figure.
  10. Don't worry about shushing--no one does it anymore.
  11. If you are white, with glasses, and female, you fit the standard of 99% of librarians. I do not have glasses, but am everything else.
  12. If a class is boring, amuse yourself in other ways--write notes, write letters to friends (hi venessa!) in your notebook and mail them, do reading for other classes, day dream, make grocery lists, etc.
  13. Librarians are friendly. Ask for help!

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