I’m really pleased to share that I have accepted the position of Digital Curation Coordinator at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Starting in mid-June, I will be responsible for managing UW’s institutional repository and working across the university on data management and digital preservation issues. It is exactly the type of position I dreamed about when I first decided to pursue a career in library technology. I applied for jobs that dealt with many different facets of library work, from digitization to digital scholarship, and I don’t think I could have written a job description that I would enjoy more. Working with data is a fascinating and challenging undertaking.
UW is familiar to me and yet brand new at the same time. My parents live in a Madison suburb and both of my younger siblings attend UW, so me coming back to Madison will be somewhat of a family affair. I’m eager to experience the city as an adult.
When I was a senior in high school applying for college, I applied to UW-Madison as well as a few other state schools. I wasn’t really a high achiever; I was well-liked by my teachers and got mostly A’s with a few B’s but I wasn’t aiming for the honor roll. I journaled through most of my classes. I ended up getting waitlisted by UW, something that wasn’t a surprise necessarily but still gave me pause. My whole attitude changed when I got waitlisted because I recognized that it didn’t matter if I thought I was smart enough to attend UW-Madison. What mattered was proving it through tangible actions.
I went to UW-La Crosse, a state school, and had a fine time. I began exploring librarianship as a career. I applied for admission to the Midwestern library schools, finally narrowing it down to UW and IU. When I chose IU, I remember saying to my dad, “I want to be competitive for a job at UW when I graduate.” Now, strangely, that sentiment has become my reality. UW shaped my attitude about building a career so it feels like I’m coming full circle.
Going from being on the job hunt to suddenly not having to spend hours on application materials is blissful. I feel as though I’ve been given the gift of enjoying my last fleeting months here at IU. I will wrap up my classes and student jobs, travel, and spend time with my partner of seven years, who is moving to Nashville, TN, when I move to Madison. I’m also exploring ways to find a place within the digital curation community. There are lots of big changes coming up but I can truly say I couldn’t be happier.