Job Hunter Follow Up: Cathy Parham

Cathy Parham

Cathy Parham took the Job Hunter’s survey on January 5, 2013.

Her responses appeared as Stop Wasting Applicants’ Time.

Your Background and Situation
How long has it been since you got your library degree?

Going on 17 years (December 1998)

How many years of library work experience do you have?

16 years

How many years of work experience outside of libraries do you have?

14 months

How old are you?

50 and loving it!

What’s your current work situation?

High school librarian/babysitter

Are you volunteering anywhere?


Your Job Hunt
How long have you been job hunting at this point?

Literally years

What kinds of jobs are you currently applying for?

Almost any library jobs outside education

Approximately how many positions have you applied to?

Not sure, but I can say it’s been well over 50

Approximately how many interviews have you gone on?

About three via Skype

How do you prepare for interviews?

I don’t

Have you traveled for interviews? If so, who paid?


Have you declined any offers?


What do you think is the biggest obstacle in your job hunt? How are you working to overcome it?

Not having a lot of experience outside the education system. Trying to get feedback from colleagues about my resume. However, people don’t/won’t get back with me.

Have there been any major changes in your job hunting strategy? Are you doing anything differently than from when we last heard from you?

Nothing different. I was thinking of hiring a resume writing specialist.

State of the Job Market

What’s the most ridiculous thing you’ve seen on a job announcement?

The salary for what they want you do do.

What was your favorite interview question? What was the worst?

Favorite: Do you have any questions for us? Worst: What is your worse (insert anything here)

Any good horror stories for us?

Went on an interview and the person interviewing applicants just left….didn’t interview me, just left the building.

Has job hunting been a positive or negative experience, for the most part?


Would you change your answer to “what’s the secret to getting hired”?

Not sure. Mainly because I don’t remember what I wrote.

Anything else you want to tell us?

I just wish I could be happy in my job. I LOVE being a librarian, but working with children is not what I’m cut out to do. I would really like to get a chance to work in a librarian in a radio or television or almost any kind of business. I don’t want to end my career being locking in a school. School librarians do (literally) everything from acquisitions to weeding.

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