Putting info pro work on back burner for a while 

Almost 30 years to the day since I started my first professional library job – at Today newspaper no less – I’m taking a bit of a break. Today will be my last full day of information work for a while.

I shall be sad to leave the Crick Institute in London. I’ve worked with some incredibly gifted people, who have been a joy to work with. I’ve had impact on how the Crick’s library & information services are organised & delivered, & look forward to keeping in touch to find out how plans progress.

The Francis Crick Institute, London
The Francis Crick Institute, London

I’ll miss working in an iconic building & entertaining people on tours. I doubt I’ll ever work anywhere with so much choice when it comes to areas to work in. Definitely one of the joys of having a building designed to encourage collaborative working & fitted out with appropriate furniture.

For those who haven’t heard: I’m stepping aside from information things for 9 months to expand my skills. I’m taking a PGCE (Postgraduate Certificate in Education) in teaching secondary school geography. It’s going to be challenging for all sorts of reasons:

– actually being in charge of a class of teenagers & teaching them geography;

– grappling with masters level academic work – something I last did more than 12 years ago;

– working in a school environment – no more iconic designed work space.

I start on 4 Sept & have 2.5 weeks at St Mary’s University, Twickenham before starting a school placement (won’t know where until 4 Sept) for the autumn term.

I will remain as CILIP President for the rest of 2017. I have a couple of meetings to chair & speaking engagements lined up for the latter part of the year.

Wish me luck & keep an eye out for a training to teach blog.

 

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I’m doing a ‘Lucy Kellaway’ and training to teach

My news: I’m doing a ‘Lucy Kellaway’ and training to teach. For those who don’t know Lucy, she’s a well-known UK journalist who writes for the Financial Times. She’s retraining, although on a different scheme to me, to become a maths teacher, and has created something of a storm since she announced her plans in 2016.

I’m starting a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in September this year. I will be diversifying my skill set so I can be a librarian & a qualified secondary school (11-18 year olds) geography teacher.

I thought long & hard about what to call this post. Initial thoughts included the obvious George Bernard Shaw quote ‘He who can, does. He who cannot, teaches.’ (Man and Superman. 230. Education). But decided this was cliched. 

Why choose the Lucy Kellaway reference? Well, most of what Lucy has said about why she is becoming a teacher is similar to my reasoning. We’re just following different routes. 

We are of a similar age – in our 50’s- & both poster children for taking up teaching at a later stage: she’s poster child for Now Teach; while I’m a poster child for RGS-IBG – Royal Geographical Society – as a scholarship recipient. Career changers have lots of transferrable skills and experience to offer. I’m looking forward to the challenge of gaining new skills and utilising my information professional skills in a school setting.

Roll on September and the start of my course.