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In February of last year, I got the chance to spend a week aboard the USS John C. Stennis, and to my great joy I found the ship’s library in my wanderings of the corridors. This opened my eyes to the surprisingly high number of libraries that exist on ships around the world. Apparently even the Titanic had two different libraries on board. This has made me think about some of the opportunities that would be available to someone who has a Masters of Library Science degree. After all, cruise ships need librarians too… I could work on my tan AND help to educate the masses. There are similar libraries everywhere. This is twenty different kinds of motivating to continue my education. Travel the world without leaving your favorite books behind. Hell, even the Semester At Sea program has opportunities for librarians to serve on their ships.

The MLS degree is still far more relevant than a lot of people think. This article from the American Library Association discusses the outlook for the degree, in contrast to a Forbes article which listed it as one of the worst choices for grad school programs. It may not be the best job line from a purely financial perspective, but, like teaching, librarianship is something people do because they love to do it, not because they want to get rich.

I’m looking at my school options for an MLS degree. I’d like to go back to school this fall, and there are two different programs that I’m considering, both of which are 100% online. I know that it’s something that I’ve talked about for a while now, so it’s time for my words to become my actions. Who knows, maybe I’ll find myself running one of those mobile libraries in the not-so-distant future.


  1. I was pleasantly surprised by the library on the cruise ship I went on a few years back. I guess I just assumed that, because it was a cruise ship, they wouldn’t really care about something like a library. But they had an excellent assortment, the librarian was really knowledgeable, it was all around a wonderful place to hang out. I would love to be a librarian on a cruise ship, although I suspect I’d need one of those MLS degrees you were talking about 😀

    • Yeah, to officially be a librarian, you would. However, there are all manner of jobs available within most of the library systems around the country that don’t require a degree. There’s something inherently magical about libraries that just calls out to certain people. Some just take different paths to get there.

  2. Reblogged this on Platte Public Library.

  3. Great article!

    I worked as a legal secretary for approximately 27 years, and have found myself in the middle of cutbacks and layoffs. However, I have considered returning to school to study Library Science.

    I have been told by Librarians in my area that libraries are also cutting back on personnel, but I won’t be discouraged because I have to start over somewhere.


    • It’s not the greatest career to be in if you’re looking to be a big earner, but if you’re wanting to be an asset to the community and to help people, then there is nothing better. I wish you the best of luck!

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