Library and Information Services Through Work Integration and Oriented Training

This paper reviews concepts of library and information services that can improve professionals training of librarians. The focus on Students Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) has been shown to be effectives and has become a necessary condition for the Award of Diplomas and Degree Certificates in the specifics disciplines in most institutions in accordance with education police of the Federal Government of Nigeria. The concept of Work Integrated and Oriented Training (WIOT), which is aimed at continuous occupational skill development and training of young professionals in early stages of their career is suggested. Similarly, the concept of Librarian Industrial Work Experience Scheme (LIWES) suggested is aimed at librarians, to bring transformation to industry and higher institutions as it can enhance and strengthen academic and industrial collaboration for the overall benefit of the nation. The paper shows that if and when these ideals are properly implemented, they will go a long way to enhance the achievement of a more qualitative and result oriented and information services for the advancement of Nigeria’s institution.
Keywords: Library and Information Services, work integrated oriented training, Librarian Industrial Works Experience Scheme (LIWES).
The need for library and information services and re-training of personnel is vital for industrial and economic growth of any Nation. Technology and business world are not static but evolving with each passing second with research and product development to achieve leading edge and marked advantage. Thus, it is highly essential that employees are regularly updated in their knowledge and skill in order to achieve improved productivity and efficient and sustained business environment which are desirable indices of most investors. The success of Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) in bridging the gap between the theoretical knowledge impacted in tertiary institutions and the practical experience of the work environment cannot be overemphasized.
SIWES provide opportunity for students to familiarize themselves and be exposed to practical work related to their course of studies, thereby supplementing and strengthening and their theoretical knowledge. The logical extension from SIWES which is primarily for student is the concept of Work Integrated and Oriented Training which is aimed at young graduate professionals in early stages of career.
The concept and vision of WIOT is to encourage continuous occupational skills development and training. It is widely known that when a tree stops growing it start decaying. This is also tree of knowledge and business. Learning must increase hourly. After graduation and securing employment, most young graduate assume that they have arrived especially with fat pay cheques which their parent never dreamt of. Except for job-driven ones, most of them assume that further training was not needed. They assume that training and research were only for those in academic environment. However, the truth is that as a result of market competition and innovations, new technology and new methods of production is always emerging.
Consequently each company is striving not only to stay in business but also to have leading edge over their increasing competitors. They realize the huge potential in young professionals and they invest heavily on them for future dividends.
The objective of this paper is to sensitize information services awareness on the concept and beneficial work integration and oriented training and beneficial practice of SIWES, WIOT and TIWES so as to facilitate synergy and all-round commitment of young librarian profession to work integrated learning that could enhance and improve the Nigeria educational and National development.
                                      The Concept of Library
A Library is a social institution. As such to serve several purposes.
  1. It should help the life-young self-education of one and all.
  2. It should furnish up-to-date facts and information on all subjects to one and all.
  3. It should work for continued social well-being, as the agency in charge of all socialized recorded thought.
  4. It should contribute to productivity-drive by informing top-managements of the latest trends in diverse enterprises by ploughing back into the minds of researchers, designers and technologists every piece of relevant new thought, promptly and pin-pointedly.
  5. It should provide to one and all a harmless and elevating use of leisure.
Thus a library has educational, informational, political, economic, industrial, cultural and antiquarian functions.  
These principles were formulated in 1928 as the five laws of Library Science. It was published in a book in 1931
Here are the Five Laws:
  1. Books are for use.
  2. Every reader his book.
  3. Every books its reader.
  4. Save the time of the reader.
  5. Library is a growing organism.
Concept of Librarianship: Roles and Responsibility.
A librarian is an information professional trained in library and information science, which is the organization and management of information services or materials for those with information needs. Typically, librarians work in public or university library and media centre. Some librarians are independent entrepreneurs working as information specialized capacities. Librarians may be categorized as a public, school, correctional, special, independent or academic librarian.
Traditionally, librarian have been associated with collection of books, journals, newspapers, magazines, audio recordings(both musical and spoken-words), map manuscripts, photographs and other graphic materials, bibliographic databases, web searching and digital resources.
Librarians often provide other information services, including computer provision and training, coordination of public programs, basic literacy education, assistive equipment for people with disabilities, and help with finding and using community resources.
 The Concept of Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES)
The Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) was initiated in 1973 by the Industrial Training Fund (ITF). This was in response to the mandate given to the ITF through Decree 47 of 971, charging it with the responsibility of promoting and encouraging the acquisition of skill in industry and commerce with the view to generating a pool of trained indigenous manpower to meet the needs of the economy..
SIWES has come to be recognized as the major avenue of bridging the gaps between the theory acquired by students of tertiary institutions essential to the technological and economic development of Nigeria. Since its introduction by the ITF in 1973, the scheme has gone through series of reforms and restricting. For instance, its management has changed hands from the ITF to the various regulatory agencies. National Universities Commission (NUC), National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) and National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) and back to the ITF. Similarly, the structure and operational framework have been reviewed, streamlined and made more functional at the various levels of its operations. Following the resumption of management of SIWES by the ITF in 1984, the scheme had witnessed rapid expansion. Between 1985 and 1995, the numbers of institutions and student participating in SIWES rose to 141 57.433 respectively.
The concept of Work Integrated and Oriented Training (WIOT)
In order to fully realize the social-economic development of the Nation, the logical extension from SIWES is therefore the concept of Work Integrated Oriented Training (WIOT), which is aimed at continuous occupational skills development and training of young professionals in early stage of their career. In this pursuit, the key players are the public and private sectors the young professionals and the higher institutions of learning. It is a strategy through which the academic and work experience are formally integrated through structured programmers that will be developed, executed and supervised by higher institutions in collaboration with their commercial/industrial partners. There is a need for higher institution to tailor their curriculum to meet industrial, commercial as well as government needs. With the current government policy encouraging higher institutions to source funds from other sources, they will be obliged to form cooperative partnerships with public and private sectors and local communities in order to deliver research outputs that will meet industrial, commercial and societal need. In the case of WIOT, there will necessarily be the need to have a workplace supervisor or mentor.
There a lot of benefits to be derived by all stake holders. For the young professionals, such training could be go a long way to enhance registration with the Library Registration Council of Nigeria (LRCN) for the registration of librarians in Nigeria. It could also bring about the shaping of their professional skill and competent that will result in improved efficiency and productivity. For the employers, it will definitely improve staff efficiency and productivity, and also enhance stability and dedication of the work fore. There will be constant injection of new technology and innovative ideas from both researchers and field practitioners. For the librarians and researchers, it could lead to direct research grants from the employers.
The Concept of Librarian Industrial Works Experience Scheme (LIWES)
Development policies, there is need to ensure that those that are responsible for training the young to enhance the success of educational and national professional librarians are themselves updated. This is where it becomes necessary for librarians to undergo Industrial Work Experience Scheme.
The idea was originally conceived by NUC which organized a workshop and a pioneering scheme at the University of Jos in 2005. The Librarian Industrial Work Experience Scheme (LIWES) was conceived primarily to enable Professional Librarians garner and exchange experiences with professionals in academic and subsequently improve their curriculum delivery in the University system. While at the industries, the Librarians would be expected to engage in hands-on involvement with the industrial processes or in industry based research relevant to the academic discipline of their specialization. Industries are expected to benefit from the experience of the Librarian in conceptual matters which could be utilized to improve their activities. The scheme is expected to engender collaboration between institution of higher learning and industry in problem-solving research and in training manpower needs of such industries some of the objectives as outline in as follows:
  1. To help the life-long self education of one and all.
  2. To promote increased relevance of subject materials taught at Universities to the work situation in related field.
  3. To enable Librarian obtain a clearer picture of industrial if regarding opportunities and challenges.
  4. To reinforce the subject taught in classroom with the practical professional knowledge obtained in academic.
  5. To provide Librarians with insights into work environments and the skills necessary for success of students after graduation
  6. To foster greater understanding between professional librarian and people in academic thereby improving university-industry relations; and
  7. To promote information dissemination and development of collaborative training programmes and research for national development.
There are three important points that could be drawn from the communiqué that was issued at the conclusion of the NUC workshop, which are follows:
  • Eligibility: All cadres of academic staff for participation in SIWES are eligible to participate in TIWES. However, preference should be given to junior academic staffs without previous industrial experience or to more senior ones whose industrial experiences are outdated.
  • Duration: The duration of TIWES should be three months so that it can be carried out during the university long vacation period. This will be without prejudice to the one year sabbatical leave that academic staffs are currently entitled.
  • Funding: For the scheme to be successful, the Government and industries should provide the funding just in the same way SIWES is funding through Industrial Training Fund (ITF).
There will be need to set up a supervisory body whose member are drawn from university and industries. At the end of their attachments, beneficiaries would be required to submit comprehensive reports similar to their SIWES attachments. Student final year projects can spring up from such reports and can be utilized to build collaborative work with the industries.
The objective of Librarians Industrial Work Experience Scheme was primarily to enable library support new research and teaching initiatives through the timely acquisition of needed library and information resources and exchange experiences with professionals in the field and subsequently improve their curriculum delivery in the university system. The scheme will ensure that subject materials taught at universities are relevant and related to current industrial and academic needs of the nation.
In conclusion, the concepts of SIWES, WIOT, and LIWES could go a long way to facilitate synergy and all-round commitment of young professionals to work integrated learning. If and when these ideas are properly implemented, they can have the potential to enhance and improve efficiency and academic input and productivity. It will also enhance and improve teaching, learning and researches techniques and capability of lecturers, librarians that will have opportunities of bridging the gap between theory and practical.   
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