I’ve been thinking about this all day! The possibility, that is, of designing sites with a clear, strong concept, message(s), and User Experience in mind. I asked one of my coworkers about what this would even be called…(would it be Web Design?) She didn’t know, though, and referred me to someone else who I should run into again, tomorrow.
There are at least two ways things could go, during and just after the end of this year.
One: I take my technical LIS (Library and Information Science) course and realize that I’m underprepared for it, or that I just don’t like the work. In this case — as there are clear warnings that the rest of the technical courses mirror this one, and it is clear that the majority of positions in the rest of the library field deal intensely with public interaction (which stresses me) — there will be a need to rethink whether I want to stay in Library Science.
My go-to option, should this happen and I drop out, would be to directly re-enter the hiring pool, utilizing the knowledge that I have now of creative process. I have both writing and art skills, already; though I could stand to gain more experience in Multimedia.
(Digital Painting, for instance, is something I’m not totally on top of; if I worked in physical media, I would need either photography and/or image-editing skills in order to import my images into digital format from hard copy. I am not highly skilled at either photography or image editing, though I have had to do both. This blog, for instance, has been reason to practice both of these skill sets.)
The second way things could go? I take my LIS course and am engaged by it, I do really well at it, and it looks like working the technical angle of Information Science is something that I’d really enjoy. In this case, I’d try to work through the next three years, come out the other end with an MLIS degree, and then market myself to those needing staff with Information expertise. This will likely also be a place where my experience in the Humanities, Sociology, and Business might be useful (though a more full appreciation of the Social Sciences might be helpful).
I’m actually hoping that I do well in my technical course (the thought of being able to produce web publications and design user-centered interfaces gives me a bit of joy), or that it otherwise becomes really apparent which path I need to take. It would be possible and perhaps a really good idea to go into Publishing if I did not have the option of continuing on in the Library/Info Science degree.
I’m likely more than able to be an Editor, which is what my undergraduate degree aimed me towards; I have Art skills, which could be useful in Illustration; I write easily and relatively fluently in English, and I have excellent English reading comprehension. I also have partial skills in both Spanish and Japanese. Though I’m closer to functionality in Spanish (which I took for five or six years in Middle and High School, though the last year was a joke), I actually really want to learn Japanese, too (which I took for two or three quarters at University). This, or a variant of Chinese (which I’ve never taken, and have been warned not to take); which dialect depends really on intended use. Cantonese would be better to use on U.S. soil; this is not necessarily the case if I’m dealing with a place like Taiwan or Hong Kong or mainland China.
The only thing that gives me pause, here, is that I am not a person who goes out of their way to read fiction books. I’m more of a nonfiction kind of person. I suppose the good part about this is that I already have somewhat of a constellation of interests. (Which could, for example, have me being a Special Librarian for a Publishing house!)
As I was speaking with my coworker today, though, I realized that the question I started this post with — of how to find information which directly targets how to build a useful, content-rich, focused, user-centered web publication — is something which might be answered by my training in LIS.
I suppose that I can always learn those other languages, later! Or — I do think that Spanish is given through my program!!!