Program: Panelists needed for International Program

2.23.16 –  Speakers Needed for ALA IRRT Program
Sarah P’s comments: If anyone is planning on attending ALA’s annual conference in June (Orlando, FL), has international experience and would like to be a panelist please let me know!  This was a program they began last year and proved very popular so they would like to repeat it this year.  So far, Ray Pun and I are going to be sharing however the more the better…
IRRT Connections sponsors a now-annual session called “leaning international: lessons from the field.”
The event description from last year, which may well be reusable this year,  said,” For MLS students through seasoned information professionals interested in working internationally, this annual program hosted by IRRT’s International Connections Committee features American librarians discussing their own unique international experiences.  Discussions are split between prepared topics and audience Q&A time.  These interactive sessions have included such diverse topics as leveraging networks to find work abroad, pre-departure language and etiquette training, adapting to regional librarianship as well as cultural standards, the practicalities of life overseas, and more! This annual program hosted by IRRT’s International Connections Committee features American librarians speaking about their own unique international experiences. 

Past speakers include: Rebecca L. Miller, Senior Research Officer at Afghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit; Catherine Shreve, Librarian for Public Policy & Political Science, Perkins Library, Duke University; Elly Shodell, Oral Historian Director of Local History Center, Port Washington Public Library, Ray Pun, ALA Emerging Leader 2014, Reference and Research Services Librarian, New York University Shanghai Library, Jim Agee, University Librarian, American University of Phnom Penh in Cambodia.

If interested please contact me via this blog and/or contact:


Ms. Jennifer T. Nardine, Assistant Professor
Learning Liaison Librarian for Performing Arts, Foreign Languages, English, and Religion & Culture
University Libraries, Virginia Tech, 560 Drillfield Dr, Blacksburg, VA  24061



2 thoughts on “Program: Panelists needed for International Program

  1. Hi, Sarah!

    I wanted to “e-introduce” myself: I’m Sam Crawford — artist, musician, librarian, mover, shaker, etc. I have been following your blog for months, and have since mentioned it to people many times, as I truly credit your proactive efforts and outreach here with enabling me to officially begin my career.

    This past fall, I was working as an interim K-12 Instructional Librarian for the University School of Nashville — a ‘maternity leave’ fill-in position that was truly a perfect fit, but (alas) temporary, leaving me to continue searching for “the next big thing,” job-wise, even in the midst of such a wonderful opportunity. In early September, my supervisor introduced me to “The Traveling Librarian,” knowing that my adventurous spirit was bound to come into play along my career path, at some point. My mind suddenly cracked wide open with inspiration and possibility; for most of my life, I had dreamed of living and working overseas, but until that moment, I was unsure of how that would ultimately happen — particularly in our profession (LIS), where overseas opportunities seem plentiful but the channels through which to discover, investigate, and pursue them are relatively few.

    It wasn’t long before a posting appeared for an opening on the island of Saipan, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), seeking applications for an Academic Librarian position at Northern Marianas College (NMC). I was intrigued; Saipan was barely a flicker in my mind’s eye, at that point (with vague recollections of WWII history), yet something about this opportunity was calling me, beckoning me. I applied that same week, interviewed (via phone) in early October, and had accepted the offer by early November.

    I’ve been on Saipan now for almost 2 months, digging into the new job, full force, and I am thrilled beyond measure to be here. Thank you, thank you, thank you for what you do, Sarah. Your commitment to maintaining this unique unique and extremely helpful resource is remarkable; I’m inspired by your work both online and off.

    All that said, I have high hopes of attending this year’s ALA meeting in Orlando, but I’ve been told I will be need to “pitch” my reasons for going and essentially “sell” the idea to my supervisors in order to secure professional development funding. I am thinking that the chance to serve on this panel for IRRT would be a tremendous opportunity to share and discuss alternative views of information work, connect with some like-minded professionals, and expand NMC’s professional network as well as my own. I’d be delighted to be considered for this, and discuss the possibilities with you further, if it’s not too late…

    At your convenience, feel free to reach out / respond directly via email (, and we can go from there. Happy to connect with you, regardless of what may happen with this year’s ALA; I have a feeling we will meet one way or another in the not-too-distant future!


    Sam Crawford, M.M., M.L.I.S.
    Academic Librarian
    Northern Marianas College
    P. O. Box 501250
    Saipan, MP 96950


    • Dear Sam,

      So, there I am last night watching International House Hunters and having a “What’s it All about Alfie” moment (yes, I know that dates me) when my phone dinged and there was your message. Thank you for reminding me that I do have a purpose post-overseas career. As you are already discovering, life will never be the same again…

      I will contact you via e-mail about ALA. Cheers & best of luck, Sarah P.

      Liked by 1 person

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