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The iSchool at the University of Marylandwould be the ideal place to channel my passion for literacy into learning the skills that will help me serve my community’s information needs in the 21stcentury. I aspire to be a librarian, with the foundation I need to provide equitable and cutting-edgeaccess to information and literacy resources for the community in which I serve.
My ultimate goal is to work as a librarian who can facilitate the information needs and learning resources of a diverse community.
To this end, I am excited to pursue a specialization in Diversity and Inclusion. The courses within the Masterof Library and Information Science program will offer a solid foundation in the skills I need to succeed andwill give me a more refinedsense of the theory involved in inclusive and accessible librarianship. In my undergraduate studies, the classes within my Women and Gender Studies concentrationdeepened my understanding of intersectionality and both the agency that access to information can provide and the power of having one’s identityreflected in the historical record.
My economics studies strengthened my abilities in working with data and details. I look forward to combining those skills with a greater emphasis on research and analysis as an MLIS student and exploring how new technologies are shaping the future of libraries and public information access.As a military spouse, my future opportunities will be shaped by where I live and a continuing need to be flexiblein how I best serve my community.
I’m interested in a role that incorporates the skills I’ve learned in facilitating community education and information access, drawing me most strongly to work in a public library setting.
While living in Okinawa, I acted as an Air Force Key Spouse and as a leadership volunteer for the American Red Cross, both as a Publicity and Marketing Chair and, eventually, the Station Chair. While these roles aren’t directly related to librarianship, they required a deep working knowledge of the family and community resources available on Kadena Air Base and through the Red Cross, and the ability to share that knowledge with a diverse body of people.
As an MLIS student, I would seek to form relationships to further my understanding of the field, participate in availablecareer and volunteeropportunities, and receive professional guidance and expertise. My prior experience as a distance learner has also taught me that distance should be no barrier to collaborating with fellow students or following up with professors. I understand the importance of frequent communication and have formed meaningful mentorship relationships using email and Skype. My hope, as a graduate student, is that I could work closely with my professors and classmates both in classwork and, eventually,research. The many research topics within the field would offer great opportunity for learning and defining my future career, particularly within the areas of Diversity and Social Justice and Community Informatics.
The wide array of course offerings and the emphasis on intellectual and cultural diversity offered at the iSchool make ita top choice for continuing my studies. While my path as a student hasn’t necessarily been traditional, my unique experiences and educational enthusiasm will give me the insight and drive to be a positive member of the iSchool community and, ultimately, achieve my professional goals.
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