Libraries, the universe and everything

Board candidate questions: #2
July 21, 2016, 13:18
Filed under: SLA | Tags: ,

As part of the candidacy requirements, we all have to answer four predetermined questions, with answers being posted at regular intervals on the campaign webpage. As this is in a members-only area of the SLA website, I decided to share my answers here as well.

Q.2: “How has involvement with SLA over the years helped you grow professionally and personally? How do you feel SLA can help members grow into the future?”

As I described in my answer to Q.1, my involvement with SLA has given me many opportunities for growth in all sorts of ways. It’s vital that SLA continues to make leadership and development opportunities available, and I think there’s a lot more we can do to promote the value of active involvement in the association to our members.

Another thing which we don’t always do well is defining the value of SLA to prospective members – we need a quick and easy way of explaining why getting involved with SLA is so great! Some individuals and units are brilliant at this, whilst others could really use guidance from the association about how best to get the message out. Library students and new grads are an obvious target (if I can put it that way!), but we also need to consider professionals at different career stages, and ways in which we can engage and serve them too.

In addition to PR within our own community, I would love to see SLA emerge as a strong advocate for the information profession as a whole, enlisting the support of mainstream figures to promote the value of qualified information professionals in the workplace, and helping to secure a future for our services.

On a more individual level, I’m a huge fan of the many webinars and other educational programs on offer through SLA, and the opportunities they provide for professional enrichment and learning. There’s so much excellent content and training being provided by our units and I’m hoping that the new Connect platform will make it much easier to share these, thereby enabling more people to participate in and benefit from them.

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