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MLA Technical Reports Series

Careers in Music Librarianship III: Reality and Reinvention

Edited by Susannah Cleveland and Joe C. Clark
TR33 ISBN 978-0-89579-787-2 (2014) xi + 217 pp. $60.00
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Music librarianship—a profession that brings joy and satisfaction to many—is subject to constant change that requires, in turn, continual adaptation from its practitioners so that they become comfortable with new technologies and formats, changing standards, and fresh approaches. Relevant and solid training and education are crucial to success in this field, but they alone are insufficient to guarantee placement or promotion. Recent economic shifts have created additional instability, leaving graduates from programs in librarianship sometimes unemployed and with little feedback about the quality of their experience and education while their employed counterparts likewise have little knowledge of their skills’ relevance to the current job market. Knowledge of training, education, and current employer expectations for music librarians can help ease such concerns and pave the way for a successful career or career change.

As with the two previous editions of Careers in Music Librarianship, this volume provides career resources and guidance for current and future librarians, as well as insights for mentors and educators working with these populations. With this volume, the contributors provide a selection of readings that can help people in and considering this profession to make realistic, informed, and strategic decisions about how to succeed in it. As the profession changes, so must the professionals within it, and everyone involved with music librarianship will  benefit from the guidance offered in this exciting, new book.

Foreword    Paul Elliot
Preface   Susannah Cleveland
1. Music Library Environments and Positions Types   Misti Shaw
2. Training and Education in Music Librarianship John Wagstaff
3. How to Make Friends, Influence People, and Maybe Even Get a Job in a Music Library: Perspectives from Recent Graduates and New Professionals   Lindy Smith
4 . Breaking into the Field in a Tough Job Market      Joe C. Clark
5. Success Is a Science: Tips for Applying and Interviewing for Music Library Jobs   Susannah Cleveland
6. Faculty Status and Music Librarian   Jennifer Ottervik
7. Career Flexibility: Moving between Position and Institution Types   Amy Pawlowski
8. Upwardly Mobile: Music Librarians Leave the Nest   Ned Quist
9. Staying Current: Keeping Skills and Knowledge Relevant in a Dynamic Professional Landscape   Holling Smith-Borne and Mark A. Puente
10. Professional Associations and Societies for Music Librarians   Ruthann Boles McTyre
11. Selected Resources   Lisa Shiota
About the Contributors     


Susannah Cleveland is the Head Librarian at the Music Library and Sound Recordings Archives at Bowling Green State University where she is a frequent member of search committees. She has served as the Music Library Association’s Placement Officer and participated in MLA’s Résumé and Cover Letter Review Service..

Joe C. Clark is currently Head of the Performing Arts Library at Kent State University. His research interests include librarian training and employment trends, collection management/resource sharing, library administration/management, and American vernacular music. He holds an MA in Ethnomusicology from Arizona State University, an MA in Information Resources and Library Science from the University of Arizona, and a BA in Music from the University of Utah.