Carla Arbagey

Electronic Resources Librarian
When did you start in your current position?:
Jun 01, 2012
Years in LAUC: 

How did you become interested in librarianship?

My mom is a retired librarian, so I grew up around the profession.  She was a public library cataloger, and often let me come to work with her for an afternoon when I was younger.  I remember being fascinated by all of the stickers she got to put on the books (genre stickers), so I had fond memories of library work from an early age.  Later on, working in the UCR library as a student, I decided to pursue an MLIS and make a career of it.

Describe the first time you worked in a library.

I had two summer jobs at the Escondido Public Library (which my mom, then senior cataloger, helped me secure).  First I was a "departmental specialist," which meant I floated between departments and did odd jobs such as working the children's reference desk or helping with sensitive documents in the literacy program (i.e., shredding!).  I also worked as a circulation assistant.

What is your current or recent role in LAUC, either locally or systemwide?: 

Currently I am the statewide vice-chair/chair elect, and the LAUC-R past president.

What do you like best about being a UC librarian?

I like our buying power.  Since I'm in collections and acquisitions, I love it that we can get great deals on superb electronic resources due to our consortium's buying power.  

Describe a recent or current project on which you are working.

I'm working on a project to discover whether enhanced MARC records for e-books really make for easier patron discovery.  I recently found a set of about 100 e-books in our catalog that had only brief records, so I cataloged them all with full, highly descriptive records. For those that speak MARC, I added contents (505) and summaries (520).  I'm going to compare usage statistics for these books from before and after full cataloging to see if there is a difference in usage. 

Describe your recent professional work outside of work, such as association work, writing, research, or anything else.

What would you like the next big thing in libraries to be?

I'd like to see libraries begin to use artificial intelligence and machine learning to help our patrons, especially researchers dealing with big data problems.  There's a great chapter on the possibilities of AI in libraries in the New Media Consortium's Library Horizon Report for 2017, see

Complete this statement: "One surprising fact about me is...”

I actually like public speaking.  I am usually the first to volunteer to present in front of a group and I like the spotlight.

Can you recommend a book or movie or tell us your favorite book or movie and why?

How about a TV series instead?  My absolute favorite is the Brit Com, Are You Being Served.  It's about a classic department store and its employees, who are always getting into mischief between their class differences, worker rights, and the battle of the sexes.  It's one of those shows you can just watch over and over and still love it.  

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