According to Webster's Dictionary online, the definition of a mentor is someone who is a trusted counselor or guide. Mentors can provide guidance and influence to an individual who is in need of direction.
Since library school, I had my share of mentors in the law librarianship field. They influenced me into joining professional associations such as AALL and DALL just to name a few. There were times where I would simply have lunch or received some advice. My best moments with my mentors was when they shared their experiences being new to the profession. Their stories made me feel as if I was not the only who was making mistakes, going through struggles or hardships trying to look for a new opportunity after graduation. I can definitely relate to them and they were perfect examples of going through growing pains, but managed to become successful.
I did not participate on committees, you can say as a young librarian I was sitting on my laurels. Because my current job in academic libraries, I was not active in law librarianship. That changed earlier this year when I decided to attend a DALL luncheon and participated in the annual Spring Institute. It was great seeing old faces and my mentors again. After attending those events, I missed working in the legal field. This summer I became Treasurer DALL and I was shocked because someone nominated me for the opening. After much thought, I knew it was time for me to get out of my comfort zone and become more involved in DALL. I am no longer a student, but an information professional that had to walk out on faith to learn this new position.
Becoming DALL Treasurer was a major blessing in disguise because it help me to become active and supportive. I thought about my mentors who made a major difference in my walk in law libraries because they encouraged me to join professional associations.
Note: I was influenced by Constance Ard's article on valuing and mentoring new inforamtion professionals. On Firmer Ground Blog.