Thanks to those who responded to this month’s Topic of the Month about the New Graduates Group. They were each different, but at the same time there were commonalities between them. Be assured that the ideas generated will be seriously considered by the Committee to help us continue to/improve how we meet the needs and support New Graduates and students in the profession. It was good to hear though that we are already doing a pretty good job.
These were the questions I posed at the start of the month:
What do you like/dislike about the New Graduates Group and our events? Are we an important network for you?
What would you like to see us do, or do more of, that we may not do currently?
If you are a LIS student, or attended NGG events as a student, have we/how could we meet your needs?
Do you think we should continue to be a separate ALIA group? Or should we merge with state groups (i.e there would be New Grad. representatives on these committees)?
I don’t want to analyse things too much, or make any grand statements, because I am only one person on the Committee. Mostly I can only speak from the Victorian side of things. But I will attempt a “reply” of sorts.
It was interesting that most of the responses came from Victoria. I do know of course that the group is very active here, but that hard work and events are happening in other states. Mention was made of the need for more activity in Adelaide and Brisbane. Bonnie Dixon is the Co-ordinator in Queensland and Melaina Tate is in Adelaide. Their details can be found here, http://www.alia.org.au/vital.link/contact , and I know they would be happy to make contact and hear more of your ideas. Recently, Andrew Finegan and a few others also made a trip to Sydney to try and get things rolling up in the Harbour-city again. If any Sydneysiders are interesting in getting involved, let him know.
The need for better communication channels was also mentioned, as was the issue of living outside a capital city. We have recently set up a blog, New Grads News Online (http://alianewgrad.blogspot.com/) and have a Facebook page as well (http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/ALIA-New-Graduates-Group/311608470523?ref=ts), and would love it if you followed us. Keeping people in the loop on what we’re doing is something we will continue to work on, but also appreciate people using word-of-mouth too. Remember, this is your group. We are very aware of the need to make our regional members feel more inclusive by organising events in these areas. It is something that needs more discussion, so thanks for raising it.
In terms of start-times for events, and venues, I think this was very Melbourne-centred. 6pm starts are thought to be a good time, because it allows people enough time to travel from work, and we hope it catches more people than if events started earlier or later. I will admit that we run a lot of our workshops at RMIT University Library in Swanston Street, because two of the team members work there (yes, I am one) and we have a lot of a support from the organisation to do so. However, a lot of people also admit it is a very central venue. Others have been considered in the past though and we will put this on our agenda again.
Thank you for the event suggestions. These were:
Web 2.0 tools What you need to know
How to stay relevant in the Google age
Mentoring/being MentoredSkills sharing
Hearing from successful professionals
What does your library need to succeed?
More work- ready events
Mentoring is something that keeps coming to our attention. We hear you! Career events are always popular. And the others are worthy too. Keep sending them through.
It was great to hear though that you really like social-events too. Sometimes it’s just great to catch up with professional colleagues for the sake of it. ‘Library Folk in the Pub’ is certainly popular in Sydney and proving the same in Melbourne. They won’t be going away anytime soon. We like that the group is important to you, that it has expanded your networks, and you want us to maintain our own identity. But we recognise the need and the benefits of collaborating with other ALIA groups, making more professional contacts, and encouraging more students to join us by making ourselves known to LIS institutions.
We can do all this, or at least try, but we also need your contribution and participation as members. Again, it is your group. We can only support you if you support us. To contact your New Grads State representative or the National Committee members, see http://www.alia.org.au/vital.link/contact
See you on the e-list or catch you at the next event. Onto the next Topic of the Month! Happy August.
ALIA New Graduates Group Victorian Committee member
ALIA New Graduates Group Website Co-ordinator