Two and a quarter years ago, I embarked on a new chapter. After taking a look at my life and myself and sorting out where I wanted this life to go, I started in on the MSLIS program at Drexel University. Forty-five credits, 21 reports, 10 research papers, 3 annotated bibliographies, 7 exams, 9 assorted projects, and what must be at least 450 discussion board posts later, I have finished everything required and requested of me. And while there have been many times through the course of the program where I couldn’t help but ask myself, “WHY AM I LEARNING THIS?,” I am quite happy with my choice and the direction things are going now.
When I was thinking about what to do with my life after struggling for years to make it in music and finding myself stressed out and depressed and disliking the office assistant work I had fallen into, I thought about what sorts of things I like to do, outside of playing the cello. As simple as it sounds, I came to library science out of a desire to create order and efficiency. I like systems and I like things to be logical. And to me, that seemed like a good place to start. And then I chose to concentrate in archival studies because I like old things. It makes me laugh, now that I actually know about archival studies, but that was my thinking at the time.
People complain a lot about library school, and I can totally understand why, but it really can be what you make of it. My papers and projects generally focused on topics I took an interest in and wanted to explore more – music librarianship, copyright issues, LGBT history and activism, among others – and that kept potentially-tedious projects from becoming a chore. And now it’s over and I’m quite happy with the work I’m doing on the PACSCL/CLIR project. I think I may have actually found a good niche for myself in archives work. With any luck, a permanent position in the field will be found in the not-too-distant future. For now, I will just sit still and try not to start another project just yet.