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It’s been six years since I’ve last thought about getting my library qualification or getting accredited by CILIP. The time before this, I was eager to start my BSc in Information Studies via distance learning at Aberystwyth University. Call me crazy but I never could spell Aberystwyth clearly without making some spelling error or relying on the computer spell checker but yet, here I was studying for my degree. Looking back, I’ve always put off obtaining my degree for one reasons or another, most notably- because its refuse at the end of the day- I can’t obtain life as a result.
Money was always an issue with me; I never earned sufficient funds from my job as library assistance with City College Birmingham and I had to take care of my twin brothers whilst in college. I’ve neglected my studies and so fell behind. I often wondered what happened to the smart, private school educated, book loving, bed covered up with books girl.
My money woes began as I was considered an international student at the time and as stated earlier funds were tight all around. The little I earned went to pay towards my college tuition and was peanuts in regard to the university term tuitions. So I dropped out after college and felt really bad when others, most notably, my friends were all heading to university – they all knew what career they wanted and here I was a failure to my mum not being the overachiever type she had always funded me to be.
Instead, I chose to serve my God and father Jehovah, to not think of material things and put serving him ahead of my life rather than for material pursuits that can easily slip through my palms like the grains of sand.
Every so often whilst watching others achieved their goals I often felt a twinge of jealousy or envy knowing that I’ll always be an underachiever bottom dweller like Oscar in Shark Tale to those around me with their nominal letters and high paying jobs. People will always looked down or overlook you in the job sector for those having gone on to university instead of the life experiences you’ve accumulated over the years. Or am I the one looking down on myself, where is my confidence, where is that girl that use to spew out her heart rather than cower in fear. So without funds, I’ve always tried to find courses that could fit around work and my budget. My work previous employer tried to assist me hence why I was able to enrol on the BSc Information Studies via distance learning at Aberystwyth.
I was excited to say the least. The week spent with so many individuals of the same mind set with students from the UK, Caribbean and as far as Singapore where all here to learn from the great minds at Abba. Disappointment soon followed as my money belt got tighter and tighter and the survival between eating and study came to a draw. Now I’ve change employment, I’m once again confronted with the possibility of further studies are staying put. I’ve checked around and the fees for higher education are again outside the remit of my financial circumstance and I’m unwilling to place myself in debt. CILIP website offers an alternative to gaining a footing in ones profession by being CILIP Certified on a more budget friendly cost. I’ve decided to go along this route and get certified and resign myself to this position which will make me feel less of an underachiever and more happier and relaxed in my role amongst the higher achievers and those looking down on me for not aspiring to my full potential. This wasn’t an easy option as CILIP website seems to be a tad bit confusing when looking for para-professional career options apart from vocational and university courses. The way the outline written made it seem initially as if Certification were for those who already hold a degree in this field and wish to have the stamp or mark of approval from CILIP to say yes, they are qualified librarians and belonging to an organisation. Yes, my views and outlook are different from others who see higher education and a prestigious job/ career in this world as the pinnacle of success. I, on the other hand don’t see this as success. Success to me is from a spiritual point of view, having a relationship with my heavenly father and completing the work I’ve been assigned of preaching the good news about God’s Kingdom and the benefits mankind will enjoy under Christ rulership in perfect conditions. Working is a means to an end but spiritual food and participating in the global preaching work is my life goal, the benefits far outweigh those of the current material benefits one can gain in this world.
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