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ILS Alumna in a Creative Libraries Fellow Position - NCSU Libraries

2015-11-20
Josephine McRobbie

Josephine McRobbie (MLS/MA Ethnomusicology’2013) was recently in Bloomington to help recruit current students for post-master degree positions with the North Carolina State University Libraries in Raleigh, North Carolina. She is currently Libraries Fellow there – and, is greatly enjoying her work. In an email interview, we asked her for an update. Below are her responses.

main job duties
You may know NCSU Libraries from the recently-opened James B. Hunt Jr. Library, AKA “The Library of the Future”, which is home to a book robot, music production studios, a video game lab, a makerspace, visualization studios, and a whole lot of amazing furniture. The NCSU Libraries Fellows program offers new librarians a two-year appointment during which we gain expertise in a home department and contribute to an area of strategic importance to our institution. I hold an MA in Folklore and Ethnomusicology, also from Indiana University, and I am able to use that as a subject specialist for a number of areas at NCSU including Music, Anthropology, Sociology, History, and Film Studies. For the other “half” of my job, I conduct user studies and testing, public application development, and ethnographic research that looks to improve the experience of in-building users. As a fully-integrated member of the library faculty, I also serve on nomination committees, make good use of my yearly conference stipend, and am a member of a number of internal committees. It’s a challenging but immensely rewarding job, and I’m so glad that I landed here!

a favorite duty
We have five high-definition Christie MicroTiles video walls of different sizes and shapes in Hunt Library. One is the Commons Wall, where we program a monthly film screening and discussion series with local film archive A/V Geeks. The archive shows historic educational films and we enlist scholars from around the university and beyond to discuss the topics. A personal favorite was when the writer Jason Torchinsky from Jalopnik and A/V Geeks screened and discussed films about the great and not-so-great cars of the 70s and 80s.

Josephine McRobbie 2

current project
As a member of our Diversity Committee, I have been working with my colleagues to increase and sustain diversity and inclusiveness in our high-tech spaces. We have a wonderful Makerspace workshop collaboration with the campus’s Women in Science and Engineering Village and helping those students learn the basics of soft circuits and 3D printing has been a total joy.

tips for students
I suggest that students going on the job market think hard about what kind of environment they would thrive in, and consider how to craft a message that shows how they would contribute. I was encouraged when applying for jobs to think about how seemingly-unrelated activities and jobs could add to my portfolio, rather than minimizing them. Now that I’m on the other side of recruiting new librarians, I love when candidates describe how their life experiences, however odd or far from libraries that may be, because oftentimes they show unique perspectives or skills that we could put to work.

We’re recruiting for next year’s cohort of Fellows now!

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At Indiana University Bloomington, employers are invited to contact our SoIC Career Services Office to arrange on-campus interviews, information sessions, or other types of visits. Jodie Sackley, Assistant Director, is a key liaison for Information and Library Science positions.

Students interested in the dual Master of Library Science/MA Folklore and Ethnomusicology are welcome to contact the ILS Admissions Office with any questions – [email: ilsmain@indiana.edu].

Media Contact

Ken Bikoff
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Phone: (812) 856-6908
kbikoff@indiana.edu