ALIA WordPress Blog GLAMR Interview – Alex Dupriez

In November, Kate Davis, ALIA Students and New Graduates Social Media Coordinator (WordPress Blog) interviewed Alex Dupriez for the blog’s second GLAMR Professional Profile Interview.

Alex is a new professional in the LIS sector, who currently works as a Library Services Officer at Brisbane’s Griffith University. Alex also sits on the New Generation Advisory Committee with ALIA. Known online as the Swordfighting Librarian, you can connect with Alex via his Twitter: @Alex__Dupriez

I have quite a diverse background. I’ve always been drawn to the library, art, museum, and general GLAMR side of things, but I didn’t realise there was a designated path to get into libraries. I initially wanted to go to university but was unsuccessful in getting in, so I couldn’t learn via that pathway. I was a tradie for a while and happened to also be doing data collection for native frogs at the time, and I found I really enjoyed it! Not long after that, we had the bushfires, so I had to find a new industry. I thought okay, I’ve always been interested in art, I’ve always been good at art, so I’ll go into that.

As I was finishing up my Certificate of Arts, I was signing up to do a Diploma of Visual Arts at a booth, and one of my friends mentioned they were there doing stuff for libraries. I actually remember just before I went into a trade, I was going into the library every day for a year, and I had asked the librarian how to get into library work. They’d said I needed a master’s degree, which wasn’t accessible to me at that point. But on this day, I thought considering how much time I’ve been spending time in libraries over the past few years, that would be ideal. So last minute, I was quite literally signing up to do a Diploma of Arts and asked if I could change. I switched right then, got to the orientation session half an hour late, and here I am now!

I am someone that has multiple disabilities; I am autistic and have ADHD, so I have to be able to work in an environment that will work with that. One of the things I’ve always really liked is categorising things and analysing them, organisation – I’d do that for free forever! But I’m also incredibly sound-sensitive, so working somewhere in retail wasn’t an option. I knew I needed something that I’d be able to sustain my therapy as well and find an environment I was able to thrive in and one that would be able to work well with what I have.

A lot of ways that libraries are built to work, I happen to be built to match really well. I rarely run out of things to do, because if I’ve somehow done all the work for the day, it means I can go into the collection and organise, and I get praised for it! I used to do this for free for years! I’m lucky enough at Griffith too, the way they set up the timetables works well for me. Every hour is a different task and that’s exactly how my brain works with everything – it’s a match made in heaven.

I would say customer service, especially under pressure. If it’s something that is potentially timed or something that I’m not fully familiar with, it’s always been one of my weaker spots. But it is something I’m constantly working on.

In my case, particularly with ADHD, I constantly need to do multiple things at once; if I’m not, I feel like I’m not doing enough. When I’m doing document delivery, scanning, and interlibrary loans, if the item Is about a topic I’m interested in (especially history), I’m sitting there learning things. I didn’t go to university, but I now have access to academic documents that could be furthering my interests, while also doing my job. I’ve got a background in visual arts, so using programs to scan everything is fast and repetitive for me, which I love.

Quite literally I’ve just come out of that neck of the woods, in April. When I was finding my placement, we were advised to start looking 2 months prior, but I recommend doing it as soon as possible. It doesn’t matter if you’re at the beginning of your course because particularly post-covid, placements are much harder to find than before. Some places are also more selective. When I started looking, I thought I’d try my local public library, but at that point, they weren’t taking placements or recruiting, indefinitely. When I was looking, I was flexible enough to be willing to take on anything within a 150km radius. At that point, only 5 places were taking any placements within that radius; most were already booked out 6 months in advance.

The only reason I got a placement is that I went back to my primary school to ask if I could do my placement with them. If there’s a school that you’re familiar with, take that opportunity. Otherwise, look into libraries that aren’t obvious; even if you have experience in other areas, medical libraries are always an option. Legal libraries as well, museums, and art galleries, all have libraries.

When I was job searching, in almost every single interview I did, I was told, you’ve got good experience, background and study, but you are the number 2 candidate. So, I thought I’d see what ALIA had that I could use to try and get myself more involved in the industry, to give myself that edge to get me over the finish line. At the same time, I was also doing a lot of other volunteering stuff. I saw that the New Generation Advisory Committee was looking for new people, so I applied. I thought the worst that could happen is they’d say no, but they wanted me to join on!

From there, I thought I’m going to take this opportunity; everything that I had to jump over in terms of hurdles in trying to find employment, I’m going to try and give all that information that I wish I had known to everyone that I do know now. That’s what I’ve been doing ever since! I enjoy helping people, but now I’ve got a title and backing to do it!

One of the things I like is surprisingly how well-spread out the sector is, with connections to other industries. Almost any other industry you work in can be transferred to libraries or GLAMR in some way, shape or form. Another thing I enjoy is how integral to the community the sector is, especially if you’re someone who enjoys helping people, likes being informed on current events, or enjoys expanding your knowledge. Libraries and GLAMR all connect in that sense. There’s almost always continuous self-development as well as industry development, and always being connected with everything. Then you can have more of a focus on particular aspects; you can be as widespread or as niche, as you want, and there will almost always be a way to pursue that within the GLAMR sector.

I recommend while you’re studying if you have to opportunity to do volunteering in any way, do it before your placement. Some places, like the Salvation Army, might need volunteers for archiving or cataloguing; snap those up as much as you can! Once you get your foot in the door, you’re pretty set, but the first step is always the hardest. If you can get yourself that nudge further, sometimes that’s just what you need to get the edge over someone else.

Also, help people out. Do the best you can for yourself but help others out. Libraries are a lot smaller than other industries, and the word does spread quickly. Eventually, everyone knows everyone, so little acts of kindness do end up going a long way, and people do remember that years down the line.

A huge thank you to Alex for sitting down with us for the interview!

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Upcoming ALIA NGAC event: Decoding Selection Criteria

If you enjoyed October’s decoding selection criteria #AusLibChat, you will love this event!

Following on from a vibrant Professional Pathway’s consultation workshop, ALIA NGAC and SNGG have asked a panel of experienced LIS professionals to take a look at some criteria for entry-level library roles and discuss how they would respond.

You might even like to use #AusLibChat on Twitter, to see what others discussed in October, before this session!

Date: Tuesday, 29th November, 7-8 pm, Online.

Don’t miss out, make sure you register here: Decoding Selection Criteria

November Newsletter

Welcome to the November newsletter!

This month catch up on ALIA in person and online events near you.

Professional Pathways!

Professional Pathways Events continued in November with Professional Pathways Consultation Workshops in Adelaide on the 1st November and Darwin on the 5th November.

Join ALIA on Tuesday the 22nd of November at 1pm for the online launch of ALIA Multicultural. The launch will include special guest Joseph Lo Bianco AM, Professor of Language and Literacy Education at the Melbourne Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne.

The meeting will be held via Zoom

ALIA SNGG Social Media Team Update!

This month ALIA SNGG Welcomes new Social Media Coordinators to the #ALIASNGG team.

Welcome:

  •  ALIA SNGG Social Media Coordinator Sheeni Mutheeu to the ALIA SNGG Twitter team.
  • ALIA SNGG Social Media Coordinator Brian Valionis to the ALIA SNGG WordPress Blog team.
  • ALIA SNGG Social Media Coordinator Kate Davis to the ALIA SNGG WordPress team.

Catch up on #ALIASNGG WordPress Blog “GLAMR Professional Interview” of Nell Fraser from the Melbourne Art Library.

Take a look at ALIA NGAC’s Alex Dupriez WordPress Blog ALIA SNGG Professional Profile on November 28th.

Catch up with ALIA SNGG Book Club – The Eyre Affair read-along!

Need to catch up on the ALIA SNGG Book Club – The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde Discussion?

  • Week 1 – Time Travel
  • Week 2 – Intertexuality
  • Week 3 – Relationships
  • Week 4 – Key Moments In Lit
  • Week 5 – Acheron Hades
  • Week 6 – Science

📚 Explore our WordPress blog link for a recap of The Eyre Affair and share your thoughts on the Eyre Affair questions.

Join the November – January read-along.

📚 New Book:

Jamaica Inn by Daphne De Maurie

Visit Adelaide Metro website for timetables and a journey planner.

Join ALIA VIC’s GLAMRous picnic!

ALIA SNGG, join ALIAVic, newcardigan, Aus Archivists and AMAGA Victoria for a #GLAMRous picnic event at Albert Park Lake on the 27th of November.

Location

Coote Picnic Area, Albert Park Lake
1 Aughtie Drive, Albert Park, Victoria 3205

Public Transport Details:
Catch the number 96 (East Brunswick – St Kilda Beach) Tram to stop 129.

Visit the Public Transport Victoria website for timetable and journey planner details.

#ALIAVic #GLAMR #ProfessionalDevelopment #Networking

Dewey Really Need It? ALIA VIC recap

Catch up on the ALIA VIC Why Classify? Part 3 of “Dewey Really Need It” Panel.

Reference:

ALIAVic. (2022, October 30), Why Classify? Part 3 of “Dewey Really Need It” Panel [Video]. YouTube.

In preparation for the New Librarians Symposium 2023, #ALIAWest created an event to help you with your questions on writing Abstracts and Conference Presentations 

If you are interested but can’t attend the event in person, fear not – ALIA West have you covered and will be live streaming the event on the ALIA West Facebook page

Join ALIA Island for their end-of-year dinner on 2nd December.

Register to join ALIA Island Christmas Dinner via the eventbrite link.

Location: Lizzie & Lefroy 349 Elizabeth Street Hobart, TAS, 7000

Date: 2nd December, 2022

Time: 6 pm – 8 pm.
Cost: Free #ALIATas Event.

ALIA NGAC team update!

Welcome Alex Dupriez and Emilia Bell to the ALIA NGAC team.

Miss out on The First Steps – New Careers in Libraries #AusLibChat?

Catch up with the chat on ALIA NGAC’s Wakelet.

View the ALIA NGAC #AusLibChat The First Steps – New Careers in Librarianship questions and share your thoughts with us on the blog.

Join ALIA NGAC and SNGG on November 29, 7pm, for Decoding Selection Criteria. This event will include a panel discussion addressing responses to common selection criteria for library roles.

Register to join ALIA NGAC Decoding Selection Criteria Event.

When: 29 November, 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM (AEDT)

Cost: FREE

Location: ZOOM

Counts as 1.00 CDP Hour

Keep an eye on the Monthly Newsletter or visit the ALIA Events page for professional development events near you!

October 2022 Newsletter

Welcome to the October Newsletter!

ALIA Distinguished Certified Professional!

Congratulation to ALIA’s latest Distinguished Certified Professionals.

📜 Emily Wison (AALIA) DCP (South Australia)

📜 Ellen Coates (AALIA) DCP #ALIAVIC (Victoria)

📜 James Baker (AALIA) DCP #ALIAVIC and #ALIAGraphic (Victoria)

📜 Jeremy de Korte (AALIA) DCP Schools/Public Library (Victoria) 

 📜 Erin Mollenhauer (AALIA) DCP Heritage Collections (New South Wales)

Professional Pathways Continue!

There are more Professional Pathways events for the month.

Join:

📌Online: Professional Pathways Consultation Workshop on 13th October, via Zoom, 4:00pm – 6:00pm (AEDT)
📌Adelaide: Professional Pathways Consultation on 3rd November, State Library of South Australia, 1:00pm – 5:00pm (ACDT) RSVP by 1st November 2022
📌Darwin: Professional Pathways Consultation on 7th November, Libraries and Archives NT, 1:00pm – 4:30pm (ACST) RSVP by 5th November 2022

📌Online: Professional Pathways: Rare Books and Special Collections RSVP by 25th October 2022

📌Online: Professional Pathways: Health Libraries online info session RSVP by 27th October 2022

Past Professional Pathways Events:

📌Canberra 7th October
📌Melbourne 4th October Consultation Workshop
📌Ballarat 5th October Consultation Workshop

📌Visit the ALIA Professional Pathways Events page for more information on Professional Pathways near you.

Catch up on the ALIASNGG and ALIANGAC Professional Pathways: Student and New Graduates Information Session Event with Trish Hepworth from the 6th of October.

📌Watch or re-watch the Students and New Graduates Professional Pathways Information Session to catch up on the discussion on the draft LIS Framework.

INCITE In Conversation

Register to join INCITE in Conversation Building trust with AFTRS (Australian Film Television & Radio School) students at the Jerzy Toeplitz Library in Sydney.

When: 20th October, 1:00pm -1:30pm (AEDT)

📌Registration closes in 2 days!

📌More info at the link: https://www.alia.org.au/EventDetail?EventKey=CONVER005

Learn about Abstracts and Presentations with ALIAWest!

In preparation for the New Librarians Symposium 2023, #ALIAWest has created an event to help you with your questions on writing Abstracts and Conference Presentations 📝📑

If you are interested but can’t attend the event in person, fear not – ALIA West have you covered and will be live streaming the event on the ALIA West Facebook page

📌When: Saturday, 5th November 2022

📌Time: 1:30pm – 4:30pm (AWST) 

📌Location: Great Southern Room – State Library of Western Australia 25 Francis Street Perth, WA 6000

Cost: FREE

Register to join the event at the ALIA West Eventbrite 👈 link

SAVE THE DATE for ALIA West Great Quiz!

ALIASAEvent!

On the 13th October ALIA SA had their Disaster Preparedness and our Cultural Heritage Collections Event at the Hetzel Lecture Theatre, State Library SA.

A half-day symposium on the role of cultural heritage collections and a workshop on disaster preparedness and collection digitization.

Queensland Library Achiever of the year.

The 2022 Queensland Library Achiever of the year happened this month.

What is Queensland Library Achiever Award?

  • An annual merit award for individuals working in the library and information centre in Queensland.
  • Aiming to promote innovation and excellence in the library and information profession
  • Started in 1995 and maintained by #ALIAQLD

Visit ALIA QLD WordPress for more event details!

Catch up on #ALIASNGGBookClub

Are you interested in joining the #ALIASNGGBookClub Facebook Group discussion?

Catch up on Week 4, 5 and 6 Discussion questions and share your thoughts on The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde with the ALIASNGG Book Club.

📌Week Four – The Eyre Affair Discussion: Key Moments In Lit

📌Week 5 – The Eyre Affair Disscusion: Acheron Hades

📌Week 6 – The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde Discussion: Science

Catch up with ALIANGAC #AusLibChat!

ALIA NGAC’s Selection Criteria #AusLibChat was on 4th October. Explore the ALIA NGAC Wakelet for posts from the chat.

Keep an eye on the Monthly Newsletter or visit the ALIA Events page for professional development events near you!

The Professional Pathways Consultation Stage 1 Survey is now open!

Did you recently attend a Professional Pathways Consultation?

GLAMR students and new graduates, give your feedback on the ALIA Professional Pathways initiative by taking the Professional Pathways Consultation survey.

View the Professional Pathways Consultation Paper before responding to the survey to help you answer the questions.

Learn more about the Draft Framework for consultation
at the Profession Pathways website.

#ProfessionalPathways