Libraries in a bind...Libraries are finding it difficult to replace aging staff

Arnie passed along some interesting news, This One from the land O' Disney. Marion County's new public library has a handful of librarian jobs to fill but only a few applicants interested in the job. With the phone not exactly ringing off the hook or the mailbox full of resumes, Assistant Library Director Patsy Marsee hopes the number of applicants will pick up after the holidays. Even then, the number is not expected to be huge.

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Liars, this is BS

These people have two jobs posted on floridalibraryjobs.com a childrens' librarian II and an information services librarian. The jobs were posted 11/2.


This is more of the nonsense they feed you in library school about the shortage of librarians. I don't think there is a shortage of librarians but a shortage of people who are willing to work for 32K after six years of college, a graduate degree, and three years of experience. I am growing more and more cynical about librarianship and my ability to make a living wage. Who can raise a family on crap wages like that. So perhaps they should stop whining about how hard it is to find librarians and pay us what we are worth. Marion County HR is willing to pay an engineering project manager III $56K, an engineering project manager II $45K - neither of these positions requires a graduate degree!


Some people enjoy public librarianship, I know I do, but few people can afford it. Those that want to live in poverty and serve others from my family have all taken holy orders.


Its not hard to find applicants if you will pay them what they are worth. The ALA has been no help on this front.

By Serena Enger. Lib not providing overall plan.

By Serena Enger senger at bpl.orgModel Businesses and Business ModelsThe Real Sheet BPLPSA newsletterBoston Public Library Professional Staff AssociationVolume 33, Number 4http://bostonpubliclibprofessionalstaffassociation .library-blogs.net/September-October 2004The Library in its ongoing reorganization effortsis not providing an overall plan for allemployees and the unions to review and discuss.Instead we are all experiencing major change ina sudden, off-hand, and incremental manner.As a major public library, as a union, and asindividual librarians, we are witnessing thedeprofessionalization of the librarianship...more...By Serena Enger senger at bpl.orgModel Businesses and Business ModelsThe Real Sheet BPLPSA newsletterBoston Public Library Professional Staff AssociationVolume 33, Number 4 September-October 2004Article may be available by email from the text processing files,senger at bpl.orghttp://bostonpubliclibprofessionalstaffassociation .library-blogs.net/

Re:Liars, this is BS

Great points. It is demeaning to get paid around $36,000 for a master's degree and twelve years of experience. Also, I work in a public school library so I do the jobs of ALL the public library staff (catalog, reference desk, circulation desk, manage, etc.) plus teach plus troubleshoot. Yet, my pay is the same as a classroom teachers (not to put them down - they work their tails off - hey, I used to do that!). But, my job entails WAY more than theirs. Anyway, I am thinking about leaving education for a public library or academic position. I would lose my summers and possibly make less, but at least I will have a specific list of jobs (rather than a laundry list of everything) and less bull to deal with - long, long story.

Remember the "Eat Me" Stories on LISNews?

I wonder if these might have something to do with the library being unable to find staff: LISNews

LisNews

LisNews

LisNews

Re:Liars, this is BS

Preach it! Library Journal has some things recently to say about salaries and such, too. If they have jobs open, that is nice. They are not paying enough for me to move to Hurricaine Country. Sorry, but LJ says the going average salary is roughly $38,000 for somebody just out of their master's program and entering into their first job. I might need a job, but I am not desperate. Indeed, I doubt I am so desperate as to leave my snow that I have known for the years of my life walking this earth for the new thing that is the ecology of Florida. The low pay they are offering does not bridge the gap for me at all...

Re:Liars, this is BS

but LJ says going average salary is roughly $38,000 for somebody just out of their master's program and entering into their first job.

Hah! [spitting out coffee] I'm not quite at that salary, have an MLS and have 9 years experience, 6 as a professional. Also, I believe those salaries lump together ALL graduates--so children's librarians get lumped in with sys admins and IT folks.

Re:Liars, this is BS

Bravo!
I have 12 years experience and now make a whooping $36,000 (post paycut) after moving to a new librarian-intense area with my spouse. From my experience, I wouldn't depend on those academic or special library jobs to pay more; some do, but many more don't. Unfortunately.

Ranges from bad to worse

We need to keep in mind when making salary comparisons that the cost of living varies wildly. For instance, my wife and I had salaries in the upper 30's when we left New York in 1998. When I started at Brooklyn Public in 1993 I was making about 26K. I now make about the same working halftime in the DC area. Using a salary comparison tool I found that the 32K in Ocala translates to about 42K here in Silver Spring, MD. My wife and I share a single job, but we own a house due mainly to the fact that we bought just before housing prices shot through the roof. We could buy here with two full-time salaries, but we wouldn't exactly be rolling in it. The 32K in Florida is pretty low, but I would wager that whatever Librarian II equivalents are making in New York these days is a lot lower. It seems like librarian salaries don't exactly qualify as "good" anywhere. Many of us hope to move up from "abysmal" to "crappy," and maybe even "bad" if we're lucky. That's a pretty sad state of affairs. I don't buy the "librarian shortage" hype for a second. I imagine I wouldn't have trouble finding a job in another part of the country, but I'm a children's librarian with a lot of experience. I would not want to be coming out of library school now; it's probably as bad as when I finished in 1991.

Re:Liars, this is BS

"Also, I believe those salaries lump together ALL graduates--so children's librarians get lumped in with sys admins and IT folks."

and? A Master's is a Master's isn't it?

Re:Liars, this is BS

Not sure I follow. But it's been a long day.

Re:Liars, this is BS

The implication seems to be that a children's librarian and a systems librarian should make different salaries even though they have the same education.

ditto on the long day, how pathetic are we to be online commenting?

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