Freshly Minted: Janine McGregor
November 10, 2022
Master of Information (MI) Candidate, School of Information Management, Dalhousie University / Non-Academic Chair, School of Information Management Student Association (SIMSA)
Which information studies program are you attending?
I am at Dalhousie University working on a Master of Information at the School of Information Management.
What are your current classes like? Which is your favourite so far, and why?
I’m currently taking three classes; culture of privacy, reading and reading practices, and information resources management. My favorite is definitely reading and reading practices. It’s been really interesting learning about how readers’ advisory works and practicing my skills.
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 I was surprised to find out how many different roles librarians can play within a library system. This is especially true for rural librarians. I interned in a rural library as well as an urban library and saw how different the roles of the librarians were in each.
What was it that initially drove you to librarianship?
I had always dreamed of opening a bookstore coffeeshop and running community programming through it. At 27 I still hadn’t realized that dream when I came across librarianship as a possible career on a career’s website through the Government of Alberta. I did a bit more research and set up an informational interview with a family friend who works as a librarian. That conversation really inspired me and made me think that I could fulfill my dream in a different way through running programming and working with books at a library.
If you could work anywhere, and do anything with information, what would your dream job look like?
As I’ve been working through the degree over the past year, I’ve had two separate goals in mind.
The first one is to be a public librarian with a focus on newcomer services. I’ve lived in many places and been a newcomer and realize the importance of libraries as a space to provide information and build community. I also feel as though newcomer services are becoming more and more important as immigration increases.
The second role I have thought about is working for an organization such as Libraries Without Borders, helping to bring information to vulnerable communities.
If someone were considering going to information studies, what would you advise them about?
If someone were considering information studies, I would make sure they were aware of all the different paths the degree can take them in. A Master of Information is a great degree for opening up many different doors for you whether it be librarianship, archives, knowledge management or data management.
What do you think is the most important aspect of being an information professional today?
I think the most important aspect of being an information professional today is knowing your users and making sure you are serving their needs. Librarianship in particular is dynamic and changing as the world changes and users’ needs are changing as well. It’s important to talk to your community and work with them to create resources and programming that will benefit them.