Welcome to August. This is a rather significant month for us, because this is the final month in the ILN pilot program. We’re proud to have reached this point, and our discussion topic for August is reflection.
The importance of reflection on our professional practice can’t be understated. It is through reflection that we consolidate our learning and we evaluate our activities. Training courses should always include time for reflection on what was learned and, importantly, what remains to be learnt. The ILN is a form of professional development, which means that taking time to reflect can help each of us better understand what we’ve learnt along the way and identify what we want to do next.
This month we’re asking our pilot program participants to reflect on their experiences of being part of the ILN over the last six months. Since February each of you has, hopefully, gotten to know a librarian in another country. How was this experience for you? Think about and discuss the following questions:
- What did you learn about the library profession in your partner’s country?
- What did you learn about your partner’s workplace?
- What professional issues do you have in common with your partner?
- What professional issues are different for your partner?
- What was new or different for you about participating in the ILN?
- What are the things you’ve wondered about throughout the program but have never asked?
ILN partnerships are supported for six months. As stated in our FAQ, at the end of six months your formal partnership automatically dissolves. Putting an end date on things helps us embrace change and make room in our professional lives for new relationships to emerge. However, just because the formal part of your partnership ends doesn’t mean your connection has to. You may wish to stay in touch with your partner outside of the formal program, and if so, please tell your partner and talk about how that might work.
Finally, think about if you would like to continue on with the ILN? We’d like to invite all our pilot participants to enrol in the first full round of the ILN, by completing the application form. Please note that if you do wish to re-enrol in the ILN you are required to complete a new form – your preferences may have changed based on your experience in the pilot program. We know that not all our pilot ILN partnerships worked, but we’d encourage all participants, regardless of your initial experience, to try again with a new partner. If you can’t commit the time now, keep in touch with us, and perhaps we can entice you back at a later date.
As always we welcome responses below and on Facebook and Twitter (#InterLibNet), both from our participants and our blog followers. So tell us, what have you gotten from the ILN over the last six months?