← Return to spotlight listing

Robert Sisson

Robert Sisson

"I think the WSU MLIS program is excellent and I'm very glad I went to Wayne State. I think the program is great preparation for working in the real world."

Q: What is your job title?
A: My title is librarian.

Q: Who do you work for?
A: I work for the Free Library of Philadelphia. For about three years I worked at the Northeast Regional Library in northeast Philadelphia. For the last year I have been working in the Government Publications Department in the Parkway Central location in downtown Philadelphia.

Q: How did you get the job?
A: I interviewed with the Free Library of Philadelphia at the ALA Convention in Washington D.C. in 2007.

Q: What does your typical day look like?
A: We get a variety of questions! We have a lot of publications the public doesn't see or know how to access, so I like helping them locate the information they need. I bring in an occasional speaker but right now I'm working on a Community Resources Fair of government and non-profit exhibitors. It's a tough economy out there and this event is designed to help people get the information they need to deal with issues like heating bills, debt, foreclosure, emergency housing, food and other difficult issues.

Q: What is your favorite part of your job?
A: I like all parts! I get to answer reference questions, arrange speakers and events, order books, and I don't mind doing weeding.

Q: What are you most proud of in terms of accomplishments related to your career?
A: I liked doing the job fairs! They were kind of crazy, but a lot of fun! They are a great way to help the community and show the variety of programs and services libraries offer.

Q: How do specific LIS classes or your specialization/certificate relate to your job? Is there anything in particular that you're reminded of regularly?
A: The database and reference classes with Dr. Anghelescu were excellent! I think the WSU MLIS program is excellent and I'm very glad I went to Wayne State. I think the program is great preparation for working in the real world. I'm also reminded of Patrice Merritt's Intro class where I had to make my very first presentation!

Q: What extracurricular groups did you participate in while you were a WSU MLIS student? Did you join any student groups, or do any volunteer work or internships?
A: I was very lucky to work part-time at the Purdy Kresge and Shiffman Libraries, which were excellent experiences. The work experience was very relevant and useful - and the supervisors were great!

Q: Who were your mentors or had an effect on you as an MLIS student?
A: Dr. Anghelescu, Monique Andrews, Rhonda McGinnis, Michelle Burns and Ellen Marks! They are all wonderful! And there are more, the faculty and staff are the best.

Q: Lastly, what's your favorite website related to the LIS field?
A: ALA, Library Journal, Public Libraries, they have print and online versions.

Library Journal named Robert one of their Movers and Shakers in the Library World in 2011.