2011: A Year in Review

Well I am winding down the year watching one of my favorite movies, Something to Talk About with Miss Sassy pants Julia Roberts. As with every passing year, the preferred tradition is to create a short inventory list of goals or things that we hoped to accomplished. I am not big on making New Years’ resolutions because most of the time it seems that by February I am totally miserable.

2011 has been an eventful year and I would like to refer back to my post A New Year and Its Meaning(s) where I have made goals of what I hoped to accomplished. I am a firm believer that goals help keep people motivated and also serve as a good indicator on measuring long-term accomplishments.

My three goals: 1) Develop a writing voice; 2) Attend a Conference; 3) Read three books. In goal one of developing a writing voice, I have discovered that in order to become a better writer it requires consistent practice. So it looks like I will have to practice more with regular blog posts. My participation with the 23 Things for Professional Development helped me develop my writing voice. I hope to continue this in 2012 session.

I attended my first genealogy conference in 2011. Sadly, I did not write about my experience which I regret. I attended the Washington DC Family History Center conference in Kennsington, MD on October 2011. There were so many wonderful sessions. African American Genealogy, Introduction to Family Search Indexing, and Land Grants/Deeds were a couple that I attended.

Harold’s List of Genealogy Events in MD/DC/VA/DE area- Oct 2011- Feb 2012

I read several books in 2011 and I was very excited to discover New York Times Book Review. Several outstanding books that I have had the pleasure to read:

The New Graduate Experience: Post MLS Residency Programs and Early Career Librarianship

Malcom X: A Life of Reinvention By Manning Marble

Silver Sparrow By Tayari Jones

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close By Jonathan Safran Foer

In Summary, 2011 was an exciting and busy year for me. I went from having a part-time job to gaining a full-time job. I have developed new skills in cataloging and Interlibrary Loan. I am expecting 2012 to be filled with continued success and challenging projects.

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CPD23 Hiatus: MLS journey

Well, I am back on the MLS Bandwagon, while admitting that I have abandoned CPD23 Thing Challenge. I am prideful to the notion that I finish most things that I have started.  The thorn in my side lately has been that I haven’t finished my MLS degree. While on CPD23 Hiatus, I have been working hard to position myself to finish my MLS program.  Now readers before your eye pop out your sockets- let me share with you, my MLS school journey.

Remember that feeling of not knowing what you wanted to be growing up? Well for me—I always knew I wanted to help others, but never knew to what capacity. During my last semester in undergrad, while writing a research paper and completing an independent study bibliographic guide, I discovered a love for finding information. It took me a couple of years in the social services field to realize that my time could be better spent educating clients about nutrition, wellness, healthy lifestyle management through finding resources. My intellectual curiosity for searching for information led me to an information session on library schools. It was during that time that I ‘bought’ into the idea of becoming an ‘Information Ninja’. [Wait, don’t cue the symphonic harmonies yet]. I had no idea that that the next two years of my life would play out as one faculty member suggested. In my first MLS lecture, the professor said something that now reasonates with me, ‘In the undergraduate years, YOU get in the way. During graduate school, LIFE GETS IN THE WAY.’ Nothing could be farthest from the truth. Half way through my program, I encountered some health challenges that prevented me from achieving my MLS within a two year period. Despite this minor setback, I am ready again to resume the challenge of tackling the MLS program.

Even though I do not have the credentials, I won’t let that discourage my focus. So my advice for people who may feel unmotivated, hopeless, or defeated; please know that you are not alone. NEVER give up on your dreams. I leave you with a couple of references regarding professional development.

Reflections on Mentoring–  By Tixylix

Professional Advice– By Academic Librarian

Charting My Professional Journey  By Joeyanne Libraryanne

Thing 4: Twitter/RSS Love Affair

My apologies for being a week behind, but with good reason. I have officially begun my permanent full-time position after completing a six months contract. I completed a one week training and I am happy with the organization/team members.

In honor of CPD23 Programme, Thing 4: Current Awareness- Twitter, RSS, and Pushnote, I  will talk about my experience using Twitter and RSS.

Twitter Photo Credit: Google Image

Twitter is considered a micro-blogging service that allows users to publish up to 140 characters. You can follower others by subscribe to their updates. According to the CPD23 Programme Twitter summary, it is a common belief that celebrities tweet about minutiae things. However, it is believed that few users actually use Twitter for networking or sharing ideas.  My personal ‘love affair’ with Twitter is that I use it to comment on reality tv shows or use the hashtags in my FB comment posts (i.e. #CBSBigBrother). I see the value of Twitter as a consumer because I rely on Twitter hashtags from my Linkedin Profile feedreader.

I recently discovered the usefulness of Twitter in the Genealogy Community. I recently became interested in researching my family history. I have connected with a local Genealogist who showed me how to search Twitter using Tweetdeck to stay up-to-date within the Genealogy community.Tweetdeck is an extension of Twitter, which allows users to view tweets on a desktop and mobile devices.

Here are some of my favorite Genealogy Tweeters that I follow: @AYWalton, @geneabloggers, @DearMYRTLE, @GederGenealogy

Here are some of my favorite Library Tweeters that I follow @JustinLibrarian, @librarianbyday, @hacklibschool.

Photo Credit: Google Images

RSS (known as Really Simple Syndication) is my favorite Web 2.0 tool. Google has a RSS tool called Google Reader that comes with signing up for a Gmail account. I proudly confess that I have not paid for cable in two years and get more enjoyment out of my RSS Feeds. I like the flexibility that Google Reader has- it allows me to categorize my feeds by subject and also keeps up with the blogs that I have not read. A common opinion among CPD23 Thing participants is the need to balance information intake. I allow myself a hour before work to read several blogs and take a small break (i.e. 15 minutes) during the day to check out my Reader. My participation with CPD23 Things have made my RSS list longer, however, one goal I hope to accomplish by the end of this programme- organize/minimize my RSS list.

FURTHER READING:

CPD23 Thing 4 Spotlight User: Angela Pashia

Hack Library School: LIS Blogs to Follow- Edition 3

the Wikiman3 Essential Things to do as soon as you join Twitter