"The fact that Wayne gives out-of-state online students the same tuition as in-state students made my decision easier."
Q: What's your name? What degree did you receive? When did you graduate?
A: My name is Marsha West. I graduated with an MLIS in December 2012.
Q: What other degrees do you have and where are they from?
A: I earned my Juris Doctorate (J.D.) from Hamline University School of Law
and a B.S. in Environmental Science from College of Santa Fe.
Q: Why did you choose Wayne State School of Library and Information Science?
A: At the time, Minnesota did not have an accredited Library and Information Science degree program. I started to look around and liked the fact that Wayne had a solid M.L.I.S. program and I could complete my degree completely online. The fact that Wayne gives out-of-state online students the same tuition as in-state students made my decision easier.
Q: What is your area of concentration? Why?
A: My concentration was on law libraries because I knew I wanted to go back to school to become a law librarian.
Q: Where/What class format did you use for most of your classes? Why?
A: I took all my classes online because I live in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Q: Are you active in any student/professional organizations?
A: I am a member of the Minnesota Library Association (MLA) and the Minnesota Association of Law Libraries (MALLS).
Q: How has your involvement in student/professional organizations impacted your SLIS and professional experience?
A: I have met tons of nice librarians and love to go to conferences. I find conferences about new and immerging technologies to be the most helpful. Being a member of MALLS, I am on their ListServ and I instantly find out if a new law library job gets posted. In that way, I've always got an inside track.
Q: Are you currently doing any library related work? If so, how did the program prepared you for it?
A: I am currently a law library intern at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota. Since I work the reference desk, I found LIS 6120 Access to Information with Dr. Anghelescu and LIS 8120 Legal Research with Professor Hanna to be the most helpful so far.
Q: What were you most proud of in library school? What are most proud of now that you are in the profession?
A: Wayne seems to emphasize technology and innovation. I am proud to be part of a profession that stays on the cutting of implementing technology so that information can be delivered to people in new ways so they can make better decisions.
Q: Was there a professor who really impacted your journey into librarianship?
A: Professor Hildur Hanna who teaches LIS 8120 Legal Research is outstanding. I graduated from law school in 2000 when the Internet was just starting to make a splash. So many things have changed in the legal research field since 2000. She really showed the class new ways to solve legal research problems.
Q: Since graduating from this program, what do you feel is the most important or surprising thing you've learned about the library and information science profession?
A: People still have some pretty surprising stereotypes about librarians in general. I feel like I have to constantly educate them about what it is we do.
Q: Do you feel you were well prepared for a career in the library and information profession?
A: Yes, Wayne's core classes try to give information professionals an overview of library topics they will encounter no matter what specialized field they decide upon.
Q: What professional accomplishments have you achieved since graduating from the program?
A: I landed an internship at the Warren E. Burger Library at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota. I am thrilled to be working with such a great staff of librarians. I also love my interactions with the students, professors, and other patrons who come in and use the library. I also get to brush up on my legal research skills by updating the assignments for Legal Research and Writing.
Q: What advice would you give to someone considering SLIS as their library school?
A: Wayne is a great option for the working professional. I was able to work full-time and finish my degree in two years. However, you have to realize that it is a commitment and you get what you put into it.