I had a plan for 2015 that involved getting experience in libraries so that when I graduated next year I would look more appealing to employers. That was the plan, but in fact I have had so many opportunities thrown at me, that at times it was hard to keep up!

Till around May this year, I continued volunteering at Melbourne Museum in the library and doing digitisation projects. I also caught a writing bug and have written so many articles and blogs though-out the year, the best of which I have included in my publications page.

But lets have a look at each month…

In January I planned how I was going to achieve my goals. I figured I should either double the amount of job applications I did or concentrate on finding an internship that suited me…  I ended up doing both. It wasn’t until July that job hunting paid off, but before then I was offered spots in the two internships I applied for. I must admit it took a bit of hunting to find some internships and on reflection I think these opportunities really should be better promoted! Anyway these are the internships I looked at:

  1. Cultural Collections Project Program
  2. Applied Museum of Arts and Science
  3. Museum Victoria Student Projects
  4. Parliamentary Library Internship
Dino Dreaming 2015 Feb 8 002 (600x800)
Me holding a fossil find, Otways VIC.

Last year I found a group called Dinosaur Dreaming and in February I fulfilled a childhood dream and went on my first dig with them. The volunteers who make up Dinosaur Dreaming are knowledgeable and fun-loving enthusiast who enjoy taking 1-3 weeks out of their lives to go a smash rocks in the hope of finding some Cretaceous-era dinosaur fossils. And the Dinosaur Dreaming scientists are pretty cool as well! I feel really blessed to have become part of this group and I plan to stay.

In March I discovered ALIA’s PD Scheme. It was a nice surprise to discover that the professional development activities I do for my own interest can be recoginsed. I also signed up for Tour Guide training at Melbourne Museum. I wanted to overcome my slight fear of public speaking, it was my hope that by talking about collections I enjoyed I will become an animated and engaging speaker. I haven’t been able to work off feeling nervous yet, but I can now speak to an audience without freezing.

Tektite dumbbell, core and button from the HR Uhlherr collection
Tektite dumbbell, core and button from the HR Uhlherr collection, Melbourne, VIC.

During April I attended three events: Renew, Rethink, Revitalise Mini ConferenceVALA Events: Make it a triple and History, Culture & Collections: Talks at Melbourne Museum. It was during this month I noticed people were recoginsing me at events and wanting to have a chat. I also started my first internship for the year at Melbourne Museum, working in the Humanities department researching collectors associated with the Museum.

In May I was offered the position of Blog Editor with Ancient History Encyclopedia (AHE). Through them I have vastly improved my blog writing and editing skills. I have also had the chance to become more involved in the Ancient History community in Melbourne and I hope to do the same while I am in Canberra.

My supervisor and I at Swinburne University, we got dressed up for my last day, Melbourne, VIC.
My supervisor and I at Swinburne University, we got dressed up for my last day, Melbourne, VIC.

Over June and July I completed the second practicum I needed to do for the course I am studying. I spent just over a month with the Information Resources Group at Swinburne University and from them I learned so much about Records and Archives in a university context. It was during the last few days of my practicum that I received a call about a job at Monash Uni.

Last year I had met, at an ALIA Newgrad event, the supervisor of Lending Services at Monash University. Since then I had kept in contact with her and we had caught up at library events. After receiving a job offer from her in July I remember thinking “so this is what it feels like when networking pays off”.

I also did a little something for myself in June and volunteered at Oz Comic Con in Melbourne.

August saw me continue work on my Museum Internship. During which, I had the pleasure of interviewing one of the collectors I had chosen to research and his wife. I also attended 2 ALIA events: KSC Seminar and Interview Questions.

RIMPA Conference 2015, Digital Dreams, Melbourne, VIC.
RIMPA Conference 2015, Digital Dreams, Melbourne, VIC.

In September I volunteered at RIMPA‘s National Conference Digital Dreams (not nightmares). After attending I realised I could be doing much more with my RIMPA membership. I have now signed up for their mentor program and have helped out with some membership advertising. I hear the advert will be ready for showing February next year.

In October I attended a conference called Museums and the Web Asia 2015 (#MWA2015). It opened my eyes to the world of content management, effective ways of using building space and the strategic plans of Museums around the world.

I moved to Canberra in November to complete my internship at the Parliamentary library. It was difficult being away from my little boy for that long but I am glad I took the risk. I now work in the Parliamentary library in Canberra and my family is in the process of moving up from Melbourne.

One of my fellow speakers Jaye and I at NGV, Melbourne, VIC.
One of my fellow speakers for APRC2015 Jaye and I at NGV, Melbourne, VIC.

I came back to Melbourne in December for a family Christmas, to finish up in my role at Monash University and to speak at OCLC ‘s Asian Pacific Regional Conference (#APRC2015). I was so pleased to be asked to speak at APRC2015 and I did so with no stutter in sight!

I am not quite sure what 2016 will have in store for me but I do know I want to exceed expectations in my new position at the Parliamentary library. Become involved in a couple library events in Canberra, learn some coding and see if Canberra’s Archaeological Society will take me on some digs.

Till next year!
DFTBA (Don’t Forget to be Awesome)

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