Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

May 14, 2012

What do you make?

By Karen Bower

— Oh you’re a librarian? I thought about doing that. What do you make?

What do I MAKE? So you really want to know what I make?

I make sources for your double-digit research paper appear in a matter of minutes, rather than hours.

I make a room full of hyperactive children sit. And laugh and clap and listen. And beg for one more story ... again and again and again!

I make your heart start beating again when, with the click of a button, I resurrect that perfectly-crafted, yet unsaved resume you thought you had lost.

I make bibliophiles out of reluctant readers.

I make sure your intellectual freedom is safe from threats by the narrow-minded.

I make my head ache as I wade through complex organizational systems, so I can ensure your head won’t ache as you search for items in our building.

I make learning fun, and accessible ... regardless of your socioeconomic status.

I make a large group of very different teenagers work together to come up with an idea that will benefit their community, and then guide them as they make that idea come to life.

I make an increasingly smaller budget stretch ... and stretch ... and streeeeetch ... to meet the needs of an increasingly dynamic society.

Contrary to popular belief, I make noise. I make noise at conferences and legislative meetings, where my voice represents thousands of people who love, value, and/or need their public library.

I went to graduate school, to earn a MASTERS degree, to become an information expert (not a professional shusher). I am a living, breathing search-engine. And unlike some unreliable Internet searches, I can process the information overload and point you to the credible sources.

I may not save your life, but I can lead you to the information you need to make the most of it. Whatever that may be.

— Karen Bower is the Outreach Children’s Librarian at the Avon-Washington Township Public Library.