Conference Workshops and Activities

ALA JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center 

ALA 2017 Annual Conference

Career Development Workshops and Other Activities

McCormick Place West - Level 3

2301 S. King Drive • Chicago, Illinois 60616

June 24 - 25, 2017



Note: Conference registration is NOT required to go to the Placement Center, to use Placement services, or to attend any workshop that is held in the Placement Center. All services and sessions are free (unless otherwise noted).  All events and activities are held in the Placement Center (unless otherwise noted).


JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center Hours

Saturday & Sunday
June 24 - 25, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.



Saturday, June 24, 2017
8:30 a.m.

This orientation is intended for people who are not familiar with the ALA JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center. We will walk around the Center and discuss the available services and activities. Both employers and job seekers are welcome to attend. Staff will be available to answer your questions.


Career Counseling

Saturday & Sunday
June 24 - 25, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Recharge your career by meeting with a professional career coach. She can guide you in strategizing for the next phase of your career, solving a problem in your current job situation, defining goals, and/or rejuvenating your career. Each one-on-one session is 20 minutes, and is completely confidential.

If you have never experienced career counseling, or just haven't used this type of service in a long time, this is the perfect opportunity to either introduce yourself to or reacquaint yourself with a service that can be useful throughout your career. Take advantage of the opportunity to talk with a knowledgeable professional about your career concerns. This service is free and available whenever the Placement Center is open.

Sign up now through Sign up Genius

Sign-up now.

You also have the option of going to the Placement Center on-site to sign-up for a time slot. However, appointments go quickly, so consider signing up in advance using the online sign-up form.



Saturday, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Are you a job seeker? Looking to find your librarian niche? Want to move up the librarianship ladder but not sure how? Are you interested in some of ALA’s amazing programs or getting involved in activities? Well, we have an event just for you! Join us to talk with working librarians who are doing great and interesting things with their careers. Find out how to get a job, move into a more specialized area, or become clearer about your career goals. All types of libraries will be represented. Libraries are changing, and you need to be ready! Join us to find out how.  No appointment needed.


On-the-Fly Mentoring

Saturday, 9:00am - 12:00pm
and Sunday, 1:00pm - 4:00pm

Looking for some professional guidance and advice while at the ALA Annual Conference? If so, you should stop by the Placement Center for the ACRL - University Libraries Section's "On-the-Fly" Mentoring to talk with an experienced librarian about any and all aspects of your career. Mentoring sessions are available by appointment and on a first-come, first-served drop-in basis.

Open House/Job Fair  small gold star with a smiling face in the middle

Sunday, June 25, 2017
10:30am - 12:00pm
Location: Placement Center

Employers will be available to talk to conference attendees about their institutions. You do not have to be an active job seeker to attend. Conference attendees can feel free to walk around and talk to employers. No appointment necessary. See the Recruiters at Conference page to see the participating employers. Employers who want to participate should send an email to : using the text 'Open House' as the subject line. There is no cost to participate.


Photography Service

Saturday & Sunday
June 24 - 25, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

An exciting service is now part of the Placement Center. The ALA JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center offers all attendees the opportunity to have a "headshot" photo package created. Any attendee can sign-up for an appointment with ALA's conference photography team to have a professional photo taken and set of digital images created for the attendees' use in job applications, social media and other networking opportunities. Sign-up now.

Photos will be taken in the Center on Saturday and Sunday, 9:00 am - 5:00 pm. Appointments can be made in advance and onsite. For advance appointments, use the online sign-up form.

There is a nominal fee of $20 which can be paid either in advance with a check or money order, or onsite with cash, money order or check only. All advance payments must be received by Friday, June 1, 2017.

To pay in advance, complete the registration form and mail it along with payment made payable to the American Library Association to the following address: ALA/HRDR, c/o  Placement Photo Service, 50 East Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611.

Sign Up now through Sign up Genius

Resume Review Service

Saturday & Sunday
June 24 - 25, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

If you need help getting your resume polished, stop by the Center while you are at conference. Come and discover the best way to show your most recent accomplishments with an updated resume.

The NMRT Resume Review Service Committee offers free resume reviews in the Placement & Career Development Center. In order to best accommodate the demand, resume reviews are conducted by appointment. Appointments will be taken on-site, but we strongly encourage those interested to sign-up for an appointment online in advance as soon as the form is available. Appointments tend to book up quickly.


Career Development Workshops (CDW)

Listed below are the sessions that will be held in the ALA JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center (unless otherwise noted). There is no cost to attend. Registration is not required. Please return to this page often, as more details will be added as we get closer to the conference.


9:00 - 10:00 a.m.
CDW: Getting Unstuck: Moving Ahead in Your Career When It Feels Like You Are Falling Behind

Were you looking for security and stability in your library career, but now you are experiencing stagnation? Have you had periods of success and achievement as a library innovator, but currently are being passed over for raises, promotions, and the cool projects?  Join us to learn how to anticipate and move past career plateaus. Topics include self-limiting belief systems, using out-of-date data, and the importance of keeping your network of work-related contacts and your skills fresh.

Presenter: Pat Wagner 


10:30 - 11:30 a.m.
CDW:  Renew, Re-Energize, Refresh Your Career

Here are the top three reasons many people say they're in their current jobs - "I needed more hours, so I took it." "It wasn't what I wanted, but it was a foot in the door." "I needed more money." Sound familiar? Well, as they say, this isn't a dress rehearsal, so it's time you made the right career decisions - for the right reasons. Imagine being happy to go to work in the morning, seeing a bright future ahead of you and taking pride in the contribution you're making. It can happen! Maybe you just need to... Renew Yourself!

Presenter: Catherine Hakala-Ausperk, MLS, CPLA, CDF 


1:00 - 2:00 p.m.
CDW: Manage Your Stress and Start Living a Healthier Life Today

Join us for this interactive session where we will discuss signs of stress and how it impacts your body and mental health.  Walk away with stress reduction techniques that you will be able to use immediately.  Leave feeling refreshed and prepared to meet challenges in healthier, more productive ways. 

Presenter: Eric Dutt, Counselor, Joliet Junior College (IL)


2:30 - 3:30 p.m.
CDW: Tips, Tricks, and Strategies for a Successful Job Hunt

Whether you are looking for that first librarian position, looking to move up the career ladder, anticipating a geographic move, or looking for something else entirely, this interactive workshop will provide you with strategies and tools to navigate and organize your search, analyze job listings, and write effective, compelling cover letters and resumes. We will also discuss the importance of creating, and maintaining, a professional online presence, and of networking and getting involved in professional development opportunities -- all of which will help get you noticed, in a good way, and propel you one step closer to the interview.

Presenter: Susanne Markgren, Digital Services Librarian, Purchase College, State University of New York



9:30 - 10:30 a.m.
CDW: HR Confidential: Insider Tips from an HR Director

An informal discussion/Q&A session where you can gain an insider's perspective on the recruitment process from three experienced HR Directors. Get tips on how to make your application stand out. Find out how to be your own best advocate for professional development and career advancement. Explore negotiation strategies to ensure you get the most out of your offer package. All questions are welcome!

About the Presenters:  

Kathryn Kjaer is the Head of the Library Human Resources at the University of California, Irvine Libraries (CA)

Dan Hoppe is the Director of Human Resources for the American Library Association. Dan has over 18 years of experience working in human resources. He has worked in a variety of settings including start-ups, a Fortune 150 Company and county government.


1:00 - 2:00 p.m.
CDW: Unemployed and Faking Normal

Elizabeth White, Author of Fifty-five, Unemployed, and Faking Normal, will discuss the hidden financial plight of many baby boomers and the pressure to act like everything's OK when everything is not OK. White was interviewed recently on PBS NewsHour and her story/articles have appeared in Next Avenue, Forbes, The Huffington Post, Christian Science Monitor, and The Washington Post.

Presenter: Elizabeth White is an entrepreneur, author, aging solutions advocate, and seasoned non-profit executive with domestic and international expertise in economic development and gender empowerment.


2:30 - 3:30 p.m.
CDW: Self-Care Practices for a Healthy Mind, Body and Soul

Self-care is not a one-time thought or event. The concept needs to be part of a long-term strategy that is embedded in your life-style. Join us for this interactive presentation where we will explore a holistic approach to wellness that encompasses mind, body and spirit.  Walk away with tangible ideas that you can put in to practice immediately.

Presenter: Rodney Bullock, Counselor, Joliet Junior College, IL


4:00 - 5:00 p.m.
CDW: The Key to Getting Interviews: Great Cover Letters and Resumes

You can’t show the hiring manager what a perfect fit you are for that job you really want if you can’t get an interview.  Effective cover letters and resumes can be the key to getting your foot in the door.  Come to this session to get tips from someone who reviews cover letters and resumes on a daily basis, a human resource director.  Bring your resume and be prepared to leave with ideas for polishing your resume and cover letters so that you can start getting those interviews.

Presenter: Dan Hoppe, Director of Human Resources for the American Library Association



For more information on the ALA JobLIST Placement & Career Development Center activities, send an email to:


This page is maintained by the ALA Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment (HRDR).


Last revised May 2017