I have two pieces of good news to share.
I am now a Chartered Librarian. Regular readers will remember that I took a leap on Leap Day and sent in my portfolio. I have now received the eagerly anticipated email reassuring me that the Qualifications Board have accepted my submission for Chartership.
I enjoyed working towards Chartership. It inspired me to visit libraries, to attend events, to write articles and to engage with my profession more. A lot of my favourite experiences from the last year or so of librarianship have been connected with this process. Looking back there are a lot of things that I could easily have missed if I hadn't had this goal to help motivate me.
Take a look at the entries on this blog. I might have visited the London Library or the Wellcome Library but I might have never got round to it. Would I have made it out to Cambridge to visit the British Antarctic Survey Library? It seems unlikely that I would have even known the trip was happening. Would I have finished CPD23 nearly on time? Would I have made it to the COFHE conference? I could give you lots of other examples.
Without wanting to go into full acceptance speech mode I would like to thank my mentor Emma Woods for all of her help and guidance. I passed, I've learnt a lot from the experience and I've enjoyed it. I think those three points prove that she's a great mentor.
I've also been lucky enough to have a very supportive manager who was prepared to send me to conferences and other events, give me time to go to meetings and so on. Thank you to her and the rest of the library team here at the college.
The last two years have been hugely significant for me in terms of professional development. Chartership was a goal but it's not the goal. It is a step on the journey. One of the great things about it is that it has reinforced or created a whole range of good habits which I now need to build on. Habits like blogging regularly, looking out for events, visiting interesting libraries, keeping up with my professional reading, keeping up with the latest ideas, reaching out to other library folk etc.
Thinking about how much I've learnt during my time at the college and how great the team here are actually highlights the less happy element of my second bit of good news. This coming Friday is my last day here. I'm starting a new job after the half term break.
A New Job
On June 8th I will start a new role at Kingston College. (I am staying in the FE sector so I won't have to change my blog description.)
Of course career progression is one of the things that motivates people to engage with professional development activities like Chartership. I am sure that being able to say that I had recently applied for Chartership helped to tick at least one or two boxes. So my personal experience is that CILIP qualifications do help your career.
I plan to make the most of the opportunities that this new post will offer me. I know that I will be building on everything that I've gained from my time at Richmond College, including all the things that I've gained from working towards my new qualification.
My journey 'beyond the shelves we know' is taking a new turning. I don't know exactly what experiences will form part of this new path but I am looking forward to finding out.