AASL, ACRL, PLA announce cooperative recruitment effort

Contact: Barb Macikas


For Immediate Release

December 19, 2002

AASL, ACRL, PLA announce cooperative recruitment effort

The American Association of School Librarians (AASL), the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) and the Public Library Association (PLA) have joined forces with associations across America in support of National Job Shadow Day. AASL, ACRL and PLA are divisions of the American Library Association (ALA).

Job Shadow Day (
www.jobshadow.org), now in its sixth year, will kick off nationally January 31, 2003. The kick-off begins a yearlong initiative that gives students across America the chance to "shadow" a workplace mentor as he or she goes through a day on the job. The national event provides a slightly more serious way to celebrate Groundhog Day, which falls this year on Sunday, February 2.

"Inviting young people 'behind the scenes' is the best way to open their eyes to all of the wonderful aspects of being a librarian - the hunt for information, helping students find the perfect source, working with important historical documents or partnering with the local skate park on a programs for teens," said PLA President Jo Ann Pinder. "I am excited to be working with my colleagues in schools and on college and university campuses to promote this dynamic career."

Young people nationwide will get an up-close look at how skills learned in school are put to use in the workplace. School, academic and public librarians will receive information and support from the three divisions to participate in the program as part of recruitment efforts association-wide. Learn about successful Job Shadow Days hosted by librarians and gain useful tips online at

The divisions will develop materials and promotions to be available on their Web pages and at library conferences, beginning with the 2003 ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia, to assist librarians in their efforts and hope to feature job shadow success stories in division print and Web publications later in the year.

Also at the 2003 Midwinter Meeting, ALA's Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment (HRDR) is sponsoring the Career Fairs Training Workshop on Friday, January 24, 2003, from 2-4 p.m. at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, room 201C. The purpose of this workshop is to train ALA members on how to actively participate in career fairs in order to promote careers in libraries and will provide information about national Job Shadow Day.

Based on 1990 Census data, almost 58 percent of professional librarians will reach the retirement age (65) between 2005 and 2019.

It is anticipated that more than 1 million students and 100,000 businesses will participate in Job Shadowing 2003. Please check
www.ala.org and
www.pla.org for updates, or call the PLA office at 1-800-545-2433, ext. 5PLA.