I think that I covered my route (so far/attempted) into the library & information world in my blog for Thing 1. I still feel very much like someone on the outside of the sweetie shop looking in, career-wise, but hopefully things are starting to change (very slowly).
At the end of a year spent applying for both graduate traineeships & entry-level positions, I think that I have finally come to the realisation that I am just too old for a traineeship! Thank you to all the kind employers/recruiters who have said that I didn't need to be a recent graduate, but maybe this has just been prolonging the delusion. Attending the only interview I was offered for a graduate traineeship (this was for one of 6 positions so there were a large number of candidates attending on the day) made me feel extremely old & I think that I should have taken the hint then that this was not going to be the route for me. From all that I have now read & heard at first hand about them, I think that they seem a great route for someone straight out of their degree or within a few years of graduation. My chosen route now is to get myself into an entry-level position & grow old gracefully!
Throughout my whole career-change planning, it has always been my strong intent to obtain a postgrad qualification. In fact, the desire to go back to doing academic work had been strong for the past few years when I had considered doing a masters in my original subject English whilst still working in the theatre. I couldn't quite overcome the feeling that dedicating time & finances to a purely academic qualification was indulgent so when I started to formulate ideas about moving into library & info work, the thought of a LIS M.A. or MSC seemed more practical & worthwhile. The financial implications of becoming a student again mean that I am definitely considering the distance learning options & am attracted by both Aberystwyth's & Aberdeen's courses. The option of twice-yearly start dates for them both is also appealing in its flexibility. I am also keen to cover a wide range of subject areas within the course in order to keep my options open.
I can't really comment on this from a personal perspective although I suspect that in the back of my mind I have a 'grand master plan' of getting a library job (first things first), completing a distance-learning masters, achieving a position at a professional level & then working towards chartership. I know that there are differing levels of opinion on the worth of chartership, & everyone's experiences are different. Having found considerable value so far in participating in cpd23, I can see how useful chartering could be as a form of structured CPD further down the line in one's career.