Freshly Minted: Lydia Thorne
June 5, 2015
MLIS Student, Faculty of Information and Media Studies, Western University
Which information studies program are you attending?
I am in my third term of my MLIS degree at Western University (formerly the University of Western Ontario).
What are your current classes like? Which is your favorite so far, and why?
If I had to choose my favourite course to date, however, I would actually have to go with a mandatory course- Perspectives on Library and Information Science with Dr. D’Alton. The course was challenging (in the best way possible!) in that it allowed me to explore issues that are central to librarianship as a profession today. The perspectives, opinions, and beliefs outlined in this class have lead me to pursue my current research interests in scholarly communication, accessibility, and professional practice. They have also helped shape my own ideologies and beliefs, as a future information professional.
Is there one aspect of the profession that surprises you that you were not expecting when you started the program? What is it?
I think that I would have to say the diversity within the profession. Before entering the program, I had a pretty narrow idea of what being a “librarian” actually entailed- something that is definitely changing as I complete my MLIS!
What was it that initially drove you to librarianship?
Originally, I entered graduate school with the hopes of becoming a professor. However, during my MA, as a teaching assistant for a 200 level English Literature course, I realized that I was enjoying teaching my students how to research more than I liked teaching them the actual course subject matter. Becoming a librarian seemed like the next logical step.
If you could work anywhere, and do anything with information, what would your dream job look like?
My current dream job is to work in an academic library as a reference and instruction/ information literacy librarian.
If someone were considering going to library school, what would you advise them about?
Try to get as much practical experience as possible!
Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions- librarians are truly helpful people.
Finally, be open to where the degree leads you. Make sure to take classes that match your personal interests, even if they are outside your chosen concentration. You just never know where those interests might take you.
What do you think is the most important aspect of being an information professional today?
I think that the most important aspect of being an information professional today is flexibility or the ability and willingness to adapt to change. Libraries currently occupy an important role in the information sharing industry and I believe that they have significant part to play in the future. However, it is important to remember that information is currency, no matter what medium is used to access that information. So, more than anything, I think that we, as current and future information professionals, need to be open to change in order to market ourselves accordingly.