by Paul Henriques, Washington DC Chapter, Government Information Divison
Information professionals by nature work in a dynamic field full of change. This fact is nothing new. However, I don’t believe anything might have prepared me for being laid off twice from two different organizations in one year. While some might look at this negatively, I am viewing this as an opportunity.
I recognized the previous organizations I worked for provided little opportunity for professional development due to financial constraints. I would have appreciated greater support to attend SLA conferences or study towards certificates. Along with the usual job applications and networking amongst peers by submitting referral applications to organizations, I am spending my time productively, for example, learning new databases where I can and perfecting my foreign language skills.
A break in ones career must be treated as a chance to increase your value for your next employer. Along with educating myself further, I made a conscious decision to obtain citizenship in the European Union, which was an option open to me through my heritage. While some may say that times are tough in Europe, economic problems are present in almost every corner of the world. Enabling myself to work in 27 other countries is an ability that can only help my career going forward. I am also not limiting myself to specific regions in the United States, however, living in Washington, D.C. affords a lot of opportunities for employment.