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Archiver > APG > 2007-01 > 1169059476

Subject: Re: [APG] Whippersnappers
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 2007 13:44:36 EST

In a message dated 1/17/2007 12:22:12 PM Central Standard Time,

I was confronted on more than one occasion by older, more seasoned
genealogists during the time when I was working on my certification
application who told me that I was too young, too inexperienced, not in the
"in crowd" that were accepted by BCG, and that I should forget ever trying
to achieve certification because I wasn't at it long enough to pass.

When trying to respond to a lament regarding lack of attendance at society
meetings by suggesting that some meetings be held as teleconferences because
the timing and location of said meetings worked only for those retired who
had no small children to contend with, I was told quite succinctly that this
was when the meetings were held and those that "really wanted to be there"
would come.

Both of these are dismaying examples.

And in response to Peggy Baldwin who wrote:
I am going to challenge you to think that it might be your newness and not
your youth.
Those of us who have made it in another profession before coming to
genealogy know that you have to pay your dues to establish your credability.
I find myself at ground zero, not unexpectedly, in genealogy, because of my
newness, even though I am in my 50s.

I have been researching for twenty-four years -- how long do I need to be
researching before I am seen as "credible"? How many more hoops will be put
up to jump through before we are seen as "good enough" or "experienced
enough" to be viable? With age may come wisdom, but often it also brings
with it entrenchment and tunnel vision. Those of us who look for mentors
who are more seasoned are met with claims that they are "too busy," or "have
no time."

These and the remainder of your comments are very disheartening. If I may
make two points. First, the BCG judges are the ones who decide if you are
qualified to be certified, not the person telling you that you can't (which you
know at this point).

Second, it is true that there is a shortage of mentors. I know this because
of on and off-list conversations. Professional genealogists ARE extremely
busy. They are trying to handle their client work (much less some occasional work
on their own lines), but also teach and volunteer to handle things for
organizations like the NGS and APG. I don't see any remedy to this. I have been
very fortunate to have had a lot of help from APGers off-list on a variety of
issues, for which I am grateful for. Someone recently told me that there were
something like 325 certified genealogists. I can't recall if they were
speaking of the U.S. only. The point is, that it is a very hard road to go down,
and those, like yourself that succeed, are asked to do a lot. (I'm sure that
someone will jump in with that correct figure.)



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