Freshly Minted: Gemma Lavoie
August 12, 2021
Maîtrise en sciences de l’information (M.S.I.) Student, École de bibliothéconomie et des sciences de l’information, Université de Montréal
Which information studies program are you attending?
I am studying for my Masters in Information Science from Université de Montréal.
What are your current classes like? Which is your favorite so far, and why?
I just completed my first year, which included mostly introductory courses on library science, archives and records management, user services, etc. I especially enjoy my archives and records management classes and hope to take more in order to receive a professional certification.
Is there one aspect of the profession that surprises you that you were not expecting when you started the program? What is it?
I was surprised by the importance of providing training and raising awareness of various information management related topics. I think it is great that there are so many opportunities for information professionals to share their knowledge and skills with colleagues and clients. Access to information and knowledge is a core value in libraries and it is interesting to see the role it plays in other settings, as well.
What was it that initially drove you to librarianship?
The many different kinds of skills learned and used, the diversity of working environments, being able to collaborate with a team, and the opportunity to help solve people’s problems (however small), all appealed to me. I like the idea of being able to work behind the scenes, ensuring things run smoothly and trying to eliminate little frustrations that can arise for people, while providing them with guidance and connecting them with the right resources.
If you could work anywhere, and do anything with information, what would your dream job look like?
I would love to do something that combines information management with my education and interest in art history, such as working for a museum or other cultural institution. But I would consider working anywhere where I can be creatively challenged and continue to learn to be a dream job.
If someone were considering going to information studies, what would you advise them about?
I would encourage openness to the many opportunities in the field that one might not expect. I have also found that this field attracts people from different educational and work backgrounds, so I would encourage one to leverage their unique skills and experiences.
What do you think is the most important aspect of being an information professional today?
I would say that continued willingness to learn as technology, society, and client needs evolve is key. I also think it is important to maintain an awareness of the human aspect of information science, by centering people’s needs and activities, and using technology in service of them.