Many colleagues that I have had the pleasure of working with, are not qualified in the area of Librarianship. It goes without saying that these workers are fantastic at their job and I hope I could be comparable at some stage of my career, but it poses the question, does experience out weight the education?
I have worked a lot of different types of jobs, which on one hand makes me desirable. I have the skills sets needed to work with the public, but what type of public is that?
I worked as a “Deli Girl” for most of my undergraduate, graduated and waiting-for-my-postgraduate-to-start years. It was in my local supermarket and I really had no idea what I was doing at the start. I had worked in a deli previously but it took a bit of adjusting. I was given the easy tasks at first, then all of a sudden; I could close up on my own and had enough hours to fund a car. I left my steady job a few times (as most of my peers before me) and they took me back. They understood I wanted to grow and learn different skills, and never judged me for it.
I am forever grateful for my deli job, it showed I could have a work life balance to employers in career style roles.
I have a few younger family members and *fabulous* friends who are currently beginning their third level education. What they all seem to think is that the piece of paper will be worth it in the end, and they will get the “dream” job.
If only that is how life works.
I have friends who have graduated and who have gone through college/university without working, in any sector. At the time when I was in my undergrad, I was jealous. Looking at their CVs now… I feel sorry for them.
My generation is going through what seems to be a never-ending-circle of “experienced qualified employees needed” (but we do not want to give you any experience). Some people have to work in a sector that is not reflective of their studies, to LIVE.
They obviously would love to work in the sector they are qualified in, but love doesn’t always pay the bills.
When it comes to the Education VS Experience debate, I am truely on the fence. I am one of the lucky ones that had time to volunteer to gain experience and work in the deli. A graduate in any discipline could come out of university with 1:1, has never worked with the public and has no social skills. Each graduate is different, each person is different.
Employers are going to have to start making changes, they need to at least give people a chance to prove themselves.
Do your best, be nice, and you will get there.