So I realise I’m a bit late to the party here but I have been meaning to get my cpd23 started since the New Professionals Conference in June which seems like a lifetime ago... nearly 6 months later with a successful Summer Reading Challenge behind me and recovery time taken I feel ready to embark upon the journey, being able to give it my full attention.
I knew nothing about cpd23 until I listened to the amazing presentation given by Helen Murphy that fateful day in Manchester and realised that I needed to take my professional development seriously. I have always been quite lax in self improvement without some kind of push or motivation and since graduating from Library School in September 2009 I have half-heartedly looked at my CILIP Update when it has been delivered without really taking much in... quite a confession I know but with the developments in the profession of late I feel that if I don’t get involved now it may get to the point where it’s all too late and all your left with are the “what ifs”.
So basic information, I always knew I wanted a career involving books. My first job was in Ottakar’s, a brilliant chain of bookstores that have since been taken over by the giant that is Waterstones. But this Saturday job cemented a love of books. After a predictable undergrad degree in English I was at the junction where most people are; graduating Uni but having no clue whatsoever with what I wanted to do for the next fifty years. I toyed with publishing or going back to book retail but after some research on trusty t’internet I found the brilliant world of Library School! An application and interview later I was off up north to lovely Sheffield for the best year of education in my life. If I was unsure before about my new career choice this intense year and my fellow library students blew all the cobwebs away. With the long summer of dissertation behind me I went out into the crazy world and tried to find my first professional post... in the middle of a recession!
I suppose the next question is why did I choose the public sector? I have always enjoyed working with the public, which I realised from my days of working in retail and I knew the world of public libraries more than special, academic or health libraries anyway. Better the devil you know I suppose... still in the last eighteen months I have learnt so much more than I thought possible and realised that although I hate the stereotypes of the public libraries; the grey building, low lighting and silence I have also been taken in by some myself. I enjoy the unpredictability of my days, you never know what enquiries you will be involved in and I enjoy having a job where you can be the heart of the community, working in a place where you meet different kinds of people and can see the difference you make to a community.
I’m hoping CPD23 will give me confidence in using social media and give the boost to keep myself updated with current issues in the profession, new technologies and will give me networking opportunities. I am also starting work on my Chartership this year and feel that combining the two will really help keep me focussed on my professional development.
So this is me, feel free to read, comment or criticise (constructively please!)