Happy New Year everyone!
I’m really excited for 2016. This year will build on the achievements and improvements made last year in carving my own path. And I have a number of projects in the works, professionally and personally. There is so much to look forward to this year. I can’t wait to get started.
So, what’s happening?
On the job front, I will be continuing my (part time) role at Queensland University of Technology (QUT), being the project officer responsible for facilitating and guiding the development of a revised suite of online learning resources (for academic and research skills). I work with a fabulous project team of nine other library staff from a variety of roles. Bringing the mix of skills and knowledge together, as well as fostering ways to collaborate and learn from each other throughout the project, are already success factors.
At least in these early months of the year, I will be assisting with a research project looking into the feasibility of partnerships between the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) and public libraries to better support students in regional areas. I enjoy opportunities related to improving services and learning outcomes, so this for me, is an interesting project to be involved in.
Earlier this month, I was super stoked to be nominated and accept the Chair position for ALIA’s New Generation Advisory Committee. I am fortunate this has come at a time when I feel able to lead and contribute to the profession in this way. The committee has an exciting year ahead, starting with the #auslibchat pilot from next month. Mark it in your calendars!
On the personal side, I’m engaged! After nearly seven years together, my fiancé proposed on a holiday in Tasmania last October, on a farm property outside Sheffield. We did the 6km walk around Dove Lake at the base of Cradle Mountain that day (3 1/2 months post-hip replacement! Woot!) before arriving at our little cabin with a cute back deck overlooking a paddock. I thought I was in for a relaxing Sunday afternoon session of wine, cheese and crackers when part-way through a conversation, he went down on bended knee! Our nearest and dearest couldn’t be happier.
I’ve already slipped into ‘project manager’ mode, ensuring we meet booking deadlines, etc.
We will be married on the Sunshine Coast at the end of July. Yes, a winter wedding!
“Write your own story” is my personal theme for 2016. This year is about dusting off the emotional debris of 2015 and paving my own path with what I want to achieve and do. This theme empowers me to be myself – to own my professional knowledge and skills, demonstrate them in my work and believe in my own abilities. “Writing my own story” also means to go the way I want for my career and develop expertise in areas of interest. This theme sits on my desk at home, reminding me every day to go out and be me.
What can we expect at ‘Flight Path’ in 2016?
I’ve been thinking a lot about ‘Flight Path’ over the last few months, and I’ve come out with a renewed sense of direction. I realised I don’t share what I know and what I’m working on often enough. Nor do I share my reflections on learning and issues I see coming out of the news and publications. The Online Learning Resources Review project at QUT is the second major, professional project I’ve worked on and led. (The Queensland public sector’s Recordkeeping Policy Framework Review being the first.) So I’m thinking there are lessons to be potentially shared in this space related to establishing and managing a project and keeping the project on track to deliver on desired outcomes.
Also last year, I found myself lending new information professionals general advice and guidance and this is something I hope to continue into 2016. One of my professional goals is to open ‘Flight Path’ to invite guest posts, ideally from newcomers to the profession looking for a friendly space to contribute to professional conversation. This space will be called ‘The Guest Room’, with me being the welcoming host and guide. This project is on the back burner for now, as other projects currently fill my plate (particularly the wedding planning!), but I hope to progress this, or something along these lines at a later stage of the year.
Lots to do and accomplish this year on the professional side. Keeping a balance and reserving space for my creative and personal projects will be challenging as always. But I feel I’m getting much better at not beating myself up and keeping the focus on the big picture.
Bring on 2016.