I am way into library conferences. I was lucky in that as a student and in my first library job, I was able to attend conferences without paying out of pocket. In my new job, as a youth librarian in rural California, the budget is not always able to support that conference life I love so.
Luckily, the California State Library was able to support me and some other staff members to head to Fargo, ND for the ARSL conference. I was only 3 months into my new job, and this conference was really important for me. I had mostly worked in urban or wealthy suburban libraries with plenty of staff and resources to support what we wanted to do. The populations and politics were very different. Being at ARSL gave me a view into the state of small and rural libraries across the country, and allowed me to find a new context for my work and position.
The programs were also helpful. After Crystal Schimpf’s “Digital Advocacy for your Library”, I was inspired to film short storytime videos for our Facebook page, and am working on a Teen Advisory Group created Summer Reading promotion video. After Sara White’s presentation on “Reaching the Teachers”, I was able to scale my school outreach plans. Learning about the EDGE Initiative connected me to national benchmarks in technology.
The 2017 conference is going to be in Utah! Here's hoping I can go (and swing by Zion).