Steering Shares are an opportunity to find out more about the I&A Steering Committee. This post comes courtesy of committee member Holly Croft, the digital archivist at Georgia College.
1) What was your first experience working with archives?
Archiving is a second career for me, and I quit the first without a clear plan with what I wanted to do next. I started volunteering on an indexing project for a nonprofit where I would attach metadata to digital versions of their collection materials. It was extremely calming in a time where I felt that many things were up in the air, and I would spend hours working on the indexes.
Because it was a volunteer position, I didn’t catch on immediately that the indexing project was part of a larger career field, but I eventually researched it and learned the avenues through which one becomes an archivist. The following fall, I applied to graduate school, and I have never looked back!
2) What do you hope to gain by being on the I&A Steering Committee?
I am so delighted to be a part of the I&A Steering Committee, and I am looking forward to working with the rest of the committee to assist archivists who need support in a variety of ways. As Joanna mentioned in her Steering Share, this is a small community, so it only makes sense that we’re stronger together.
3) What is an archival issue that means a lot to you?
Recently, this committee has taken a look at labor practices particularly surrounding temporary positions and the precarity they create for those who end up taking them. This is, unfortunately, an ongoing concern.
I also am increasingly uneasy with additional labor dumped on archivists, particularly under the guise of “other duties as assigned” and “doing less with more.” This is a topic that hits labor markets well beyond archives, but I’ll bet the majority of archivists have a story about these phrases biting them in some way at their jobs.
These are only two of a myriad of topics affecting archivists today, and I am looking forward to being able to assist where possible.
4) What can we find you doing outside of the archival profession?
I have become the crazy cat lady people warn you about becoming in library school! Two months ago, I had two cats. I took in a stray that looked a little rotund at the beginning of October, and mid-October, I suddenly had six cats.
Just kidding – I could tell there were kittens coming when I took in the third. So, I’m spending a lot of time socializing these little ones and getting them ready for their forever homes.
Additionally, I love cooking and preserving food, gardening, and reading.