"As the SIS Diversity GSA I have had the opportunity to attend and conduct poster presentations at the American Library Association (ALA), the Michigan Library Association (MLA), and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA)."
Q: What's your name? What degree are you pursuing?
A: Nichole L. Manlove, MLIS & MA History-2016 (?)
Q: What other degrees do you have and where are they from?
A: B.A. in Advertising from Michigan State University.
Q: Why did you choose Wayne State School of Library and Information Science?
A: They have an accredited program, are rated among the top 25 programs in the U.S. Wayne State is also close to home and they offer online classes.
Q: What is your area of specialization? Why?
A: Archives, Digital Content Management and History. I absolutely love history and everything associated with it. This program allows students to combine their interest in history, archives, librarianship and technology. This way students are able to combine all of their interest into one career field. It seems as if all of these aspects magically fit together.
Q: Where/What class format did you use for most of your classes? Why?
A: I decided to go 50/50. While I enjoy the benefits of working face to face with fellow students and instructors, I also wanted to keep abreast of technology. Engaging in online classes helps students such as myself become more comfortable with using advanced technology.
Q: Are you active in any student/professional organizations?
A: Yes. FLID-Future Librarians for Inclusivity and Diversity, of which I am President. Also, SAA-Society of American Archivists, of which I am Secretary/Treasurer.
Q: How has your involvement in student/professional organizations impacted your SLIS and professional experience?
A: It has forced me to step outside of my shell. I have also developed leadership skills that will assist me in the future. I have had several opportunities to meet professionals in my field whom have also provided me with encouragement and great professional advice.
Q: Are you currently doing any library related work? If so, how has the program prepared you for it?
A: Yes I was awarded a Graduate Student Assistantship with the School of Library and Information Science. As the Diversity Graduate Student Assistant (DGSA), I focus my attentions on recruiting students from underrepresented populations. An additional focus is promoting diversity within the LIS profession and discussing and keeping abreast of issues as they relate.
As a student, I specialize in Archives and Digital Content Management so I do not have traditional library experience but I have volunteered for the past four years with the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History-Archives Library (Detroit, MI). I recently completed my internship where I processed a collection of documents belonging to Civil Rights Icon Rosa L. Parks. This Summer I will begin a digitization fellowship with the Detroit Historical Society (Detroit, MI) though I am not sure of the collection I will be working on.
I am also conducting research on Cultural Competence in LIS curricula with Dr. Kafi Kumasi-these skills will certainly benefit me as I delve into my profession.
Q: What is the Diversity Graduate Student Assistantship (DGSA) position?
A: The purpose of this position is to bring awareness of diversity issues within the LIS profession while also encouraging members of underrepresented populations to take an interest in the profession. The DGSA is responsible for building relationships on and off of Wayne's campus, developing and reviewing informational and promotional materials, coordinating and participating in informational meetings, making recommendations on future initiatives and assisting SLIS staff with special projects and events.
Q: What were you most proud of in library school? What are you most proud of now that you are in the profession?
A: I am proud of the fact that I am finally a good student! I have learned to push myself beyond my comfort zone. I have challenged myself in becoming involved with student groups (leadership positions), and by working as the SLIS Diversity GSA, an intern with the Charles H. Wright Museum and a digitization fellow with the Detroit Historical Society. I was even encouraged to assist Dr. Kafi Kumasi with research for an upcoming publication. I never imagined myself being this active as an undergrad…what a difference time and age can make!
Q: Was there a professor who really impacted your journey into librarianship?
A: There were quite a few, it is hard to narrow it down but I can list Dr. Louis Jones, Kimberly Schroeder, Joan Beaudoin, and Dr. Kafi Kumasi as the professors who really encouraged me and made a difference in my experience here at Wayne.
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: Well I have not graduated yet but the most striking thing that comes to mind is the constant fluctuation in knowledge and skills that one has to contend with in this technological era. The field of librarianship is ever changing in order to keep up with technological demands, I was not aware of the brevity of this prior to starting the program. It may prove to be a challenge for me to keep up, but it is welcomed.
Q: Do you feel you were well prepared for a career in the library and information profession?
A: I am still a student, but yes I do feel this program will allow me to be well prepared for any professional opportunities or challenges that arise. The track that I took placed a great deal of focus on allowing students to obtain real world hands-on experience…which is priceless when trying to land a job in the field of LIS.
Q: What professional accomplishments have you achieved so far since graduating from the program?
A: I am still a student so I am a work in progress. However as the SLIS Diversity Graduate Student Assistant I have had the opportunity to attend and conduct poster presentations at the American Library Association (ALA), the Michigan Library Association (MLA), and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA). I have also conducted presentations about SLIS and Diversity with the Atlanta University Center Summer Leadership Institute, Siena Heights University and the St. Claire County Public Library. As the Diversity GSA I have spent a considerable amount of time recruiting and exposing students to issues surrounding diversity in the Library and Information Science field. As I mentioned earlier I also obtained an internship with the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History where I processed a collection of documents belonging to Rosa L. Parks. This summer I will also be working as a Digitization Fellow for the Detroit Historical Society. Aside from professional accomplishments I challenged myself by taking over as the president of FLID (Future Librarians for Inclusivity and Diversity) and by stepping up as the secretary and Treasurer for WSU student chapter of SAA (the Society of American Archivists'). As an added challenge I have applied for the Harold T. Pinkett Minority Student Travel Award to assist with funding to this year's SAA conference in Washington, DC. I have also applied to Wayne's History program in which I am patiently waiting a response. It seems hard to believe but I have challenged myself in ways that never have. This overall has helped me to gain the skills and confidence I need to make myself stand out amongst other future archivists'. I am a stronger and more confident person than I have ever been.
Q: What advice would you give to someone considering [Wayne's] SLIS as their library school?
A: Keep an open mind; always be willing to learn as much as you can. Don't hesitate or be afraid to go the extra mile, it really does go a long way in the end. I would also advise students to manage their time wisely, communicate with their professors and get as much hands on experience as you possibly can. The latter two will make you stand out amongst other students and professionals. Let's not forget the importance of professional networking!!!!!!