Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Member Profile: Mark Gelsomino

Not every CLA-CASLIS member is from a special library. Our programming can sometimes attract librarians from other sectors, like Mark.


Mark Gelsomino currently works at the Ottawa Public Library (OPL) as a Digital Services Librarian. He took on this position in mid-November 2010, but has worked for OPL in various positions for the past 9 years.

As a Digital Services Librarian, Gelsomino works on various projects that help facilitate and enhance the users’ experience of the library. Gelsomino enjoys the technological aspects of his work; he is excited about getting introduced to new systems and making them work for the OPL. For instance, Gelsomino and his team recently updated the library catalog to allow patrons to leave comments and suggestions.

Gelsomino finds it challenging to work in an environment in which, on the one hand, the public constantly demands an increase in library services, and where, on the other hand, services are always under threat due to budget cuts from the government.

Gelsomino predicts that in the future, electronic services in libraries will increase: Social media will become increasingly integrated in various library services and we will see an increase in eBooks. For librarians it is important to stay up to date with current trends and technologies, and to keep an open mind to using them in the library setting.

Gelsomino has a number of tips for young professionals trying to start their careers in a library. When looking for a job, “don’t feel like you are too good for any job.” Specifically, if you are interested in working for a particular employer, get your foot in the door by taking up any job position. Once you are in the system, opportunities arise and you can apply to internal job postings. Once you hold a position, “find one thing you are passionate about and that you like, and focus on it.” You will be able to make valuable contributions to your work place and show your employer that you are passionate about your work and librarianship in general.

Gelsomino decided to join CLA-CASLIS because it organizes a lot of events. He is excited to be part of a dynamic professional network that allows him to be in touch with and learn from professionals who do not necessarily work in public libraries. He has learned a lot from special librarians about some of their practices, experiences and challenges, and he can now use this knowledge at his own work place. In other words, being part of CLA-CASLIS has exposed Gelsomino to an important network that allows him to learn and exchange ideas.

Profile by Janina Mueller
CLA-CASLIS iSchool Student Liaison, MI Candidate 2011

No comments:

Post a Comment