Careers in law_libraries

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  •   Introduction – I’m going to tell you a bit about me, and what I do. I’m going to talk about job titles, and where you can get more education, and then I’ll tell you what opportunities exist here in Winnipeg. At the end I’ll be happy to take any questions. Law librarian at Pitblado LLP Graduate of the LIT program 2003 First job after graduating – career resource centre at UW Been at Pitblado since 2006
  • When I started, firm had been without a librarian for two months Had no legal experience Started with what I knew best, which was how to run a library A law library (and probably any special library) has a unique collection development pattern I mostly purchase bound texts, annual compilations, and looseleaf updates, as well as specialized databases. Depending on the publisher, the looseleafs are published on a fairly random basis. If there are a lot of changes in the law that year, I can get 3 or 4 updates on a product when I’m only expecting one or two. Obviously this makes it really difficult to stay within budget. On the other hand, I’m not going to be penalized for going over budget. It’s my job to monitor expenses, and let the administrators know if we’re going to go over. The textbook library work I do is reference, cataloguing, acquisitions, collection development and circulation I also spend a lot of time marketing – this can be in the form of talking with my clients and finding out what areas of law are of interest to them, so I can keep them on top of new developments, to hand-delivering requests, so people see me. If you stay in the library, you can easily get forgotten. A solo opportunity is not for an introvert who just wants to “do the job”. I constantly reinvent my job – from mainly looking after the physical library to adding business development and competitive intelligence using the latest social media tools like Twitter, LinkedIn and blogs.
  • I want to talk a little about my job title. My firm calls me a librarian. I think only library people get caught up in the different terms. I agonized over it, but I AM performing the job of a librarian – I manage the library. And dealing with an audience of lawyers, it helps to use a term they’re comfortable with. I certainly don’t represent that I have a master’s degree. When I get together with law library people, what’s more interesting is who has an LLB or JD.
  • If you’d like to get legal research experience, there are two programs that I’m familiar with: The iSchool Institute (of the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Information) offers a Legal Research on the web program at various times of the year http://www.institute.ischool.utoronto.ca/coursedescription.asp?courseid=5 I took this after I had been at my firm for about 6 months. By that time I had figured out what my strengths and weaknesses were and used that to tailor the program
  • Mohawk College offers a distance course called Law Libraries and Legal Research http://www.mohawkcollege.ca/Discover/CE/disted/librec/csedesc.html the second hand information I’ve received about this course is that it’s very basic, and covers federal and Ontario law. Frankly I wouldn’t take either of these programs unless you were going to be hired by a law library – there are so many changes in the law and resources, that unless you’re ready to use the information you’re not going to retain what you’ve learned
  • Professional Associations: Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL-ACBD: http://www.callacbd.ca/
  • There aren’t a huge number of opportunities in Winnipeg but they do exist and they seem to come and go in spurts Private law firms: 7 firms in Winnipeg have law librarians. Our education ranges from library technicians to librarians to one with a masters in museum studies. Only one of us had previously worked in a law library, so all of our firms had to deal with the subject specialist learning curve Department of Justice: both the federal and provincial departments of Justice have library staff. Justice Canada has two library technicians, and the Manitoba Attorney General’s office has a librarian. University of Manitoba law library: There are several library assistant positions at the law school library. Courthouse: The Law Society of Manitoba manages the Great Library, which is at the courts. There are three staff there. The Legislature: the legislative library (both at the legislature and at 200 Vaughan) hire library technicians.
  • Careers in law_libraries

    1. 1. <ul><li>Why you should fall to your knees and worship a librarian </li></ul>
    2. 2. My job
    3. 3. Job title <ul><li>Librarian? </li></ul><ul><li>Or Library technician? </li></ul>
    4. 4. More education? <ul><li>University of Toronto iSchool Institute </li></ul><ul><li>Legal Research on the Web </li></ul>
    5. 5. More education? <ul><li>Mohawk College Distance Education </li></ul><ul><li>LIBRLT405 Law Libraries and Legal Research </li></ul>
    6. 6. More education? <ul><li>CALL-ACBD – Canadian Association of Law Libraries </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.callacbd.ca </li></ul>
    7. 7. Opportunities
    8. 8. Questions?

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