Just about a week ago, my e-portfolio was approved. I’m taking another class this semester– research methods, which is turning out to be pretty interesting– but for all intents and purposes, I’m done. Done with school, done with the MLIS, and ready to be a grown-up-type librarian.
If I am completely honest, I don’t know that the e-portfolio was the most mentally challenging exercise– but I can say without a doubt that it was the best possible way for me to reflect on what I’ve accomplished over the past five semesters. This next bit will be boring for most of you, but stick with me: the compilation of an e-portfolio is one of two culminating experiences that is offered at my school (the other is a thesis, which I think we can agree is a little silly for a terminal masters, particularly in a very practice-based field). I knew from the beginning of the program that I would have to put together evidence that I had fulfilled all of the stated core competencies set forth by the school, along with a statement for each (there are fifteen in all), as well as a “statement of professional philosophy” and concluding statement. I put the whole thing together in about a month and a half; it was really the perfect task leading up to our London trip, as I was trying to set my sleep rhythm in anticipation of travel and had a lot of early-early morning time to work on things. I remember finishing my last few statements on a train between London and Blackpool, submitting everything online from our hotel in Blackpool. We came home, and I had a few small edits to make. I made them, submitted my final drafts…and that was it.
It seemed a bit anticlimactic, really. We were staying with friends last weekend, and I got the email: “Congratulations,” said my “advisor” (in name only, as his advice was limited to three statements…yes, seriously). And that was it. It was over.
So, now what? I’ve been an intern at the same place for nearly two and a half years: longer than I’ve been in school. They aren’t in a position to offer me a full-time job, and the job market for librarians in general is pretty bleak. I’m working all my possible connections, librarian and not, and hoping for the best. If you happen to know any eccentric billionaires who want to hire a personal librarian (my possibly-nonexistent Library Dream Job), hook a girl up! Until then, it’ll be all the resume-customizing and cover letter-writing that I can handle (yes, I’m working on building up my tolerance for both of these brain-numbing tasks).