Mandi Goodsett's interest in professional development was sparked when she was an iSchool student volunteering with the Special Libraries Association (SLA). She has since become an active member of the American Library Association, serving as president of the ALA New Members Round Table and as a member of the ALA Steering Committee on Organizational Effectiveness. Goodsett was recently selected by the ALA as the 2022 Lois Ann Gregory-Wood Fellow. She will receive a stipend of $2,500 to offset the cost of attending the ALA 2022 Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. and the 2023 LibLearnX experience in New Orleans.
Where do you work and what is your role?
I am the performing arts and humanities librarian/open educational resource and copyright advisor at Cleveland State University in Northeast Ohio.
What do you like best about your job?
I love working with students and faculty! There's nothing like the feeling of knowing that I helped someone learn something new or pursue important research.
What do you see as the most important impact of your work?
I'm so fortunate to have frequent opportunities in my work to teach members of my campus community information literacy skills. One of my personal passions is media literacy; I believe librarians can play an important role in helping to improve the ability of students to detect misinformation, a skill that our world needs now more than ever.
How did the iSchool at Illinois help you get to where you are today?
I learned so much in my courses at the iSchool, but I think one of the greatest benefits was the connections I made with my classmates. It's so great running into classmates from my cohort at conferences all these years later! I also had the opportunity as a student to explore what it means to participate as a member of the professional library community. While at UIUC, I was a volunteer in our student SLA chapter, and the positive experience sparked my love of participating in professional development.
What advice would you like to share with iSchool students?
I previously mentioned the value of connections in library school—take advantage of the opportunity to make those connections! Get to know your classmates and your professors so you can build lifelong professional relationships. I also recommend getting some experience working in a library or archive before graduating, if you can. Not only will that make you more employable, it will help you decide what area of librarianship suits you best.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I love to cook, volunteer with climate activism organizations, visit my family in Wisconsin, play board games with friends and family, and, of course, read.