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Three Ways to Help Build MLA’s Educational Future

In January, the MLA Board established a task force to revise the “Competencies for Lifelong Learning and Professional Success” policy to keep up with the evolving needs of MLA members and the changing environment in which we work.

We all know our profession is constantly changing. Our education needs are changing, too. To stay at the top and keep excelling in your job, you need new skills and knowledge. MLA’s job is to help you do that by being the top provider of continuing education for health sciences librarians.

An up-to-date professional competencies document is the foundation for a solid curriculum that enables you to achieve your learning objectives. Once the competencies are revised, we’ll work with the Continuing Education Committee to restructure and enhance current MLA education programs (see goal 3) and introduce new forms of delivery that fit how you’re learning today.

In order to shape this vision for MLA’s education offerings, the task force needs to hear from you, the members of MLA. Please help us set standards for professional competency and create vital and responsive professional development by sharing your input.

  • Right now. Comment on this blog post. What are three professional competencies you want to develop or improve now or in the near future? 
  • At the annual meeting. Attend the open forum, “Revitalizing the Professional Competencies for Lifelong Learning,” to be held on May 18, at 2:00 p.m., in the Austin Convention Center, Level Four, Room 18D. If you will be attending MLA this year, please stop by and make your voice heard.
  • In the future. The task force is working on a survey that will be sent to all MLA members.  This survey will ask about your professional goals, lifelong learning priorities, and desired educational opportunities.  We’ll share more information about this survey in the coming months.

Estelle Brodman may have said it best, back in 1979:




“We must educate for the problems of a generation hence, not for the problems of today…librarians must be imbued with the psychological ability to handle change and live with ambiguity. Without this they will be performing tomorrow’s tasks with yesterday’s concepts.” –Estelle Brodman, Allerton Invitational Conference on Education for Health Sciences Librarianship

That’s what MLA is striving for even today.

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