Certification Success: How I Got a Promotion

By Kirbie Despain

When I started working at my local library in 2017, I only worked 18 hours a week. I knew even then, working that small amount of time, that I wanted a career working in libraries. I was determined to learn as much as I could. Since then, I’ve worked my way up from 18 to 40 hours weekly. My goal was someday to become a Lead over the Children’s Department. I knew that managing a department would require more knowledge than I had learned from co-workers and my lead librarian. That is when I decided to earn a Library Support Staff Certification (LSSC). Another staff member was starting the CLSS program, and I remembered that I had started but never fully finished. I started the process in 2018, but life happened, and I couldn’t complete the program then. 

Kimberly Redd, who manages the LSSC program at the ALA-APA, was such a huge help. She helped me determine that it was still possible for me to finish the program. I had until December 2022 to complete it. I started in February of this year and completed my classes in June. This whole experience has been great for me. While completing the LSSC program, I worked 33 hours weekly as an Adult Library Assistant II. Our Children’s Department Lead knew she would retire in July. This potential opportunity motivated me to finish my certification program. I wanted to be fully prepared and qualified when I applied to be the Lead in the Children’s department. I felt the certification would give me a better chance of being selected for the position.

I am proud to say that August 10, 2022, was my first day as the Youth Service Lead. I am profoundly grateful for what I was taught in my classes because it helped me to get where I am today! 

Kirbie Despain (Library Support Staff Certification received August 2022) serves as Youth Services Lead Librarian at the Fremont County Library System – Riverton Branch, Riverton, WY.