The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the career path of academic librarians in countless ways, from the library science master’s program to entry into a new job. In this presentation, two entry-level business librarians at the same institution point to the similarities and differences of their respective paths. Special attention will be given to how the pandemic shaped their approach to their current positions. The authors describe expectations framed by the novelty of the profession and how their master’s program prepared them for their roles in regard to collection development.
Throughout the presentation, the authors will reflect on the collection development training that they received during their master’s programs. The authors will also discuss navigating entering this profession during a time of budget constraints. The authors identify business and communications disciplines as ones that rely on large-scale and highly expensive subscriptions. These subscriptions are often requested by faculty and students indicating preference for specific brands. The authors had the opportunity to learn from their colleagues about how to creatively maximize existing resources due to these constraints, emphasizing the importance of learning on the job. These strategies include reviewing enhancements to subscriptions and products, reviewing and updating libguides, and collaborating on cancellation or renewal policies with immediate colleagues and peer institutions.
This piece aims to provide new insights and hopes to inspire further research on what can be done to support entry-level business librarians in making informed collection development decisions.