|Grimsby Central Library|
Lampeter, the place is relevant to my career development, honestly, and not just a plug for a university where I had a great time and learnt alot. At the end of 3 years, and armed with a humanities degree, I was told by the careers service that the best option was teaching. As both my parents were teachers there was no way I was going in that direction.
Aberystwyth for a number of good and bad reasons. Lampeter was not an easy place to get out of and Aber was just up the road for looking around. I had got my archive place there and they didn't make you go for an interview. I liked the variety of the set modules and the historical/rare book optional course. I suppose what clinched it, apart from being back by the sea, was the full bursary I received.
University of Northampton. I was the Assistant Systems librarian it was a steep learning curve as I was faced with the Talis library management system, cd-rom networks (the future of electronic resources!!) and then the start of web pages. I was only there just over a year but thanks to their excellent training programme I obtained my Library Association chartership. The IT stuff I learnt has been a benefit for the rest of my career although I have never gone back into direct systems support.
Gonville & Caius College Library. This job asked for someone preferably with a science degree. I did not have one but it did not put me off. I was asked why I applied at the interview without a science degree and replied that it was listed as desirable not essential. So look carefully at the criteria in job specs and if it is not essential then go for the job. I was asked at the interview about resources for astronomy but could apply my reference interview technique to any subject and it worked, I had the job. Working in a smaller library gave me the opportunity to do a bit of everything and this is when I started cataloguing and classifying. It was not my main role but it was something to add to the cv.
Faculty of Classics, Cambridge. Not only has this completed a circle round to my first interest in ancient history but I have also just finished a diploma in archive studies fulfilling my early career dream.
I will now finish my ramble by saying that I never really had a career plan (if I had it might all have been different). After Northampton I decided that I enjoyed working in the academic sector and I have been lucky enough to continue in that sector althoughCILIP and play an active role on a number of committees, which have helped me in my work.
If all else fails, I can always fall back on a second career as a cartographer!