Engineering Librarianship — Outdated Career Path?

I’ve been thinking alot lately about which way I will go for a career in this new field I’ve entered. Until recently, I’ve been gung-ho on engineering librarianship. Why wouldn’t I be? I’ve been an engineer for so long, and becoming an engineering librarian seems like a natural fit. It still does, to some extent, but I’ve been thinking more long term about it now. Libraries have changed immensely over the last decade and will continue to change into the future. I’m beginning to feel that the traditional career path of librarian in a traditional library setting is disappearing and will one day not be here. Why am I feeling this way, you ask? Well, I’ve been told by people in hiring manager positions that jobs aren’t being filled as people retire, they’re being eliminated. This is not a good sign. Plus, the traditional librarian role is being transformed. Libraries want people who are well-versed in the technology aspect of librarianship now. E-Science and Digital Humanities are becoming big things now. So, my sense is that for a more stable long term career, I should focus my attention towards what is becoming big now and away from what is going away. I’m thankful to have the opportunity to learn the data curation field. This is what I’m feeling right now. I will reserve judgement at this time, but I’m leaning towards data curation as a long term career instead of engineering librarianship.

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