image is everything

Some time ago, I went on about how bothersome it is to be taken for a student instead of a librarian. It happens a lot. Yes, I do look youngish, but I’m 27, I have a good 8 years of higher education behind me, and I’ve been working in a proper, non-GA role for quite some time. Most of all, I don’t act like a student. I act professionally and competently.

Students and professors often ask me how long I’ve been in school, or what program I’m working on. That’s not so bad, we usually get a laugh out of it when I explain that I’m not a student at all. What reallyΒ bothers me is when someone questions my ability to provide a proper service, as if they condescend to seek my assistance because they have no other option at the moment, incorrectly assuming that I’m a student. Like yesterday (aha! she gets to the point), when a certain individual stopped by the desk and started asking very impertinent questions about my background (both culturally and educationally) and that of my coworkers. I admit, I was reluctant to provide any sort of research assistance after his interrogation. Then, as I was showing him how to find the journal he sought, he had the gall to say, “Oh, so you’re a librarian. I neverΒ would have thought .”

Why? Why would you notΒ think the person working in a library and helping you conduct research is a librarian? What about me just screams “Not A Librarian“? Should I adopt a certain look to convince you? Dress in a frumpy manner and shush you? Really.

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Author: gricel d.

writer. librarian. cat lady.

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