Graham Lavender, OCULA President, introduces himself.
The OLA Mentoring Committee is dedicated to developing and implementing sustainable mentoring-related activities and services for OLA members and for library education programs in the province. The committee aims to provide programs and services related to career choices within libraries and librarianship, skills development related to the job application process and career-related guidance and support for new, mid, and late-career librarians and library technicians. Many members may be familiar with the Career Centre that we organize and run at Super Conference. The role of mentors and the impact they can have on our careers is significant.
Testimonial from a participant:
The OLA Mentoring Program allowed me to connect with knowledgeable professionals within the field. The visit which my mentor arranged gave me a fuller understanding of how librarians working in different roles contribute to the services that an academic library offers its patrons. –KL
In order to provide an enhanced mentoring experience for our members, the Committee has been working very hard to relaunch our mentoring program. This year, we were very excited to launch OLA Mentor Match, a matching service available to OLA members all year round. The program strives to link working professionals with students, new graduates and other library staff interested in a career in libraries and related fields. The service was built in collaboration with staff at the Southern Ontario Library Service (SOLS) on the LearnHQ platform they developed for public library professional development.
We anticipate that this online matching tool will not only simplify the process for OLA members who are looking for a mentor and for OLA members who wish to volunteer as mentors, but also result in matches being made more quickly.
Are you an experienced professional with something to offer? New to the profession and seeking guidance? We are making a call out to OCULA members to join OLA Mentor Match. We currently are in need of more mentors in the system. That said, whether you wish to be a mentor or are looking for one, we encourage you to log in now and create your account in OLA Mentor Match. You will receive an email when you have been matched and then the rest will be up to you!
Karen McGrath is past President of OPLA and OLA (2012). She is currently a Leadership Development mentor/coach consultant.
Melanie Parlette-Stewart is a Blended Learning Librarian at the University of Guelph Library. She can be reached at mparlett [at] uoguelph.ca.