Pathways to Librarianship

Year One in Review


  • Tay Roylance Syracuse University
  • Rachel Ivy Clarke Syracuse University
  • Tim Furgal New York Library Association
  • Desiree Scretching Syracuse University



Barrier Identification, System Overview, inclusivity, innovation, Community


Pathways, a joint project between the New York Library Association (NYLA) and the Syracuse University School of Information Studies (iSchool), is guided by four essential research questions: What are people’s current experiences of pathways into and within the library profession? What are the challenges or barriers people face along their pathways? How, if at all, do those challenges vary among library types and settings? How can we reduce or eliminate these barriers with the goal of increasing diversity and representation in New York’s library workforce? These four questions are multifaceted in their potential answers. In order to attempt addressing the problem holistically, Pathways consists of a three-phase plan in which we have dedicated a year to each phase. We are currently on the first phase: Identify.  In this phase, we are seeking answers to the first three research questions laid out above via journey mapping sessions held throughout the state of New York. A team of research assistants, two from each regional library consortia, will be trained on research ethics and methods, as well as qualitative data collection and analysis. After training, they will be connected to interview participants within their district in order to conduct in-person journey mapping sessions. Participants will be able to self-identify personal barriers they’ve individually faced, and then can extrapolate based on the overall data trends what the most prevalent roadblocks are for our second phase, in which we will be recruiting stakeholders to brainstorm viable solutions we can then pilot in year three.






Works in Progress Posters