Librarians Love Their Jobs, Here's Why
We all know that there are a million and one reasons why the library is one of the best places to be. Here’s an insider secret: that librarians and library staff feel the same way. There are few roles as unique as that of a library worker. While there are tasks that need to be regularly completed, librarians can expect that every day will look a little bit different. It is no wonder that people join the field and stay in the field for a variety of reasons. We tap into the wide network of library professionals in the Library Think Tank, a Facebook group for librarians and library people, for insight into the best part about working in a library.
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Lifelong Learners, Rejoice!
A job at the library comes with just as much fun as it does knowledge. There are lots of activities and programs that the library offers to cater to every type of interest. Whether you’re up for building robots or following along with the lifecycle of a monarch butterfly you are sure to have an opportunity to explore your personal interests. Librarians are very enthusiastic and innovative when it comes to creating events that they know will spark excitement and joy. Planning programs is just half the fun. Getting to see community members enjoy the programs makes working in the library even more rewarding.
“The [book] cart races are just a bonus!” -Rose
Sharing in Passions
Another point that many Think Tank members include on their list of reasons why they love being employed at the library is interacting with people, whether they are coworkers or library patrons. If there is one person you are sure to meet while working at the library, it is another book lover. “Carol” says one of her favorite things about working at the library is when she gets into a discussion with others about a book that they all love.
It’s not just sharing a passion for books either, it is also helping others discover their passions for books. “Sam” states that “helping that kid who hates reading find the book or series they end up loving” is his favorite part of his job. This can look like one-on-one time, asking a librarian for their recommendations based on interests, or a group program where the librarian is engaging with many people on a topic in a book.
“Helping that kid who hates reading find the book/series they end up loving is my favorite part of the job” -Sam
Many librarians and library staff were attracted to their roles simply because they love the library and what libraries do. Building a collection of resources, books, and other materials is where some librarians have found their passion. They love being able to play a role in creating a collection of useful items for readers.
While developing collections, librarians also get the opportunity to visit other library branches and see what everyone else in the community is working on. This fueled the librarians’ curiosities. “Jan” mentioned her favorite thing was doing collection development and “weeding.”
“I got to visit all of our branch libraries and get to know their collections, so I could choose books for them. And I loved weeding.” -Jan
Insider Lingo: “Weeding” is the process of evaluating the collection to determine which books need to be reshelved or removed.
Libraries are loved by their communities because of the access to resources that they provide. The library functions differently for everyone and it all comes to members of the community at no cost or judgment. For some people, it is a place of refuge where they can shelter from cold weather and catch up on the news. For others, a library is a place they can freely explore new interests.
Libraries provide access to technology, books, resume assistance, legal resources, and many other tools and resources. “Jenny” says that she loves “being part of a place that works to eliminate traditional barriers (particularly economic) to access.” There are very few places left in the world that fill the roles that libraries do.
“I love being part of a place that works to eliminate traditional barriers (particularly economic) to access.” -Jenny
Endless Love for the Library
There are dozens of comments from people who want to explain favorite aspects of their library job and why working at a library has been a lifelong dream. Whether it’s inspiring others, being exposed to new ideas, teaching the community, or just the love of a well-organized bookshelf, there is an infinite amount of love that library professionals have for their libraries.