Celebration vitae: Your CV and you

Megan Welsh, Courtney McDonald, Jennifer E. Knievel


The “curriculum vitae”—the written history of all your accomplishments and accolades, otherwise known as the CV—may be the most critical piece of academic documentation of your career (besides those degrees hanging on your wall that is).

What is so important about the CV? Why do you need one? The CV is a key part of the application process when you search for any academic library position. It functions as a “ticket of entry,” outlining education, experiences, and qualifications that make you an acceptable candidate. Likewise, as you progress in your career, it tracks positions you have held, your scholarly presence in the field and additional degrees you attain. This much longer document becomes your passport to positions with greater responsibility, supervisory or leadership roles, and higher ranks of academia through tenure or promotion processes. While the CV helps us to hit these major career milestones and work toward big goals, it also functions as a record in the shorter term. CVs may be requested as part of annual evaluation processes so that supervisory chains and committees of peers can evaluate accomplishments documented within the past year.

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Copyright Megan Welsh, Courtney McDonald, Jennifer E. Knievel

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