Julia’s job takes a novel twist
Oamaru librarian Julia de Ruiter is one of 13 selected nationwide to take part in an Emerging Leaders programme.
The programme has been created by the Library and Information Association of New Zealand (LIANZA) to develop up and coming leaders in the industry.
De Ruiter, who’s passionate about social media and technology in the library context, applied for the programme following a suggestion from her boss and is thrilled with the selection.
‘‘It’s exciting. It’s a privilege to be a part of the programme. A lot of people want to do it so to be picked means they must see my potential,’’ she said.
‘‘I’m very excited by the challenge to learn new skills and push myself outside my comfort zone.’’
De Ruiter started working at the Oamaru Public Library five years ago. She said working for the library was not her first choice for career, but she has grown to love the position.
‘‘ I didn’t actually ‘ want’ to enter the field as such,’’ she laughs.
‘‘I was going to take a gap year and work before going off to study occupational therapy, applied for the job, got it and just haven’t left.
‘‘I’ve stayed because I really love my job, I have an amazing boss, great colleagues and an awesome support system around me. Plus I love Oamaru.’’
During her time working at the library, de Ruiter has completed a diploma in information and library studies and certificate in literature and services for children and young people.
The Emerging Leaders pro- gramme will help take her career to the next level, she said.
‘‘It will also be a recognisable course within the industry, not a qualification, just a good thing to have on your CV.’’
The programme will require de Ruiter to undertake eight months of study – about 12 hours a week online – looking at ‘‘exclusive’’ topics to do with the developing field of information here and across the world.
She has already the opportunity to attend conferences that have looked at subjects including blogging, kids’ book clubs and creative strategies for encouraging kids to read.
The conference was ‘‘amazing but exhausting’’, she said.
De Ruiter has also begun studying towards a bachelor of arts in communication, library and information studies, which she will complete via correspondence through Open Polytechnic.