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Arjun Sabharwal

Arjun Sabharwal

"Even if you do not land in your dream job, maintain some presence in the community so you can prepare yourself for a surprise opening. Start going to conferences, write articles for newsletters, and become active in a local organization. That is your investment! That's what happened to me as well."

Q: What's your name? What degree did you receive? When did you graduate?
A: Arjun Sabharwal, M.L.I.S. & Grad. Cert. in Archival Administration (2003).

Q: What other degrees do you have and where are they from?
A: MA - University of Michigan (1996), California State University, Northridge (MA: 1994, BA: 1991).

Q: Why did you choose Wayne State School of Library and Information Science?
A: I was teaching at the Music Department, so it was convenient; but I was happy that the archival program was also very good.

Q: What is your area of concentration? Why?
A: Archiving, digital curation, and digital humanities - I am interested in working with primary sources.

Q: Where/What class format did you use for most of your classes? Why?
A: Archival methods I/II, photo archiving, oral history, metadata.

Q: Are you active in any student/professional organizations?
A: Michigan Chapter of ASIST (trying to revitalize it).

Q: How has your involvement in student/professional organizations impacted your SLIS and professional experience?
A: It helped me to be prepared for the opportunities that might come along.

Q: Are you currently doing any library related work? If so, how has the program prepared you for it?
A: Yes, I work as Digital Initiatives Librarian at the University of Toledo; and the program was truly helpful. I can engage in archiving as well as digital projects.

Q: What were you most proud of in library school? What are you most proud of now that you are in the profession?
A: Being an archivist while also working with digital humanities material.

Q: Was there a professor who really impacted your journey into librarianship?
A: Many: Dr. Philip Mason, Dr. Ronald Powell, Dr. Joseph Mika, Kim Schroeder, Dr. Anghelescu, Dr. Ankem, Laura Mancini, and Dr. Holley.

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: As a former professor, I had always felt that librarians can be integral to the academic community, and can do more by engaging directly with professors. Digital Humanities (DH) is one excellent example.

Q: Do you feel you were well prepared for a career in the library and information profession?
A: Yes, but if there was no course in DH, the program surely has opened doors to me.

Q: What professional accomplishments have you achieved since graduating from the program?
A: Yes, I have started to publish, and became curator to one of the nation's earlier digital history projects - Toledo's Attic, and now I am writing a book for Chandos Publishing.

Q: What advice would you give to someone considering [Wayne's] SLIS as their library school?
A: Even if you do not land in your dream job, maintain some presence in the community so you can prepare yourself for a surprise opening. Start going to conferences, write articles for newsletters, and become active in a local organization. That is your investment! That's what happened to me as well.