Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program
March 2014 Grant Announcement

Arizona  |  California  |  Florida  |  Illinois  |  Indiana  |  Maryland  |  Massachusetts  |  Missouri  |  Montana

New Jersey  |  New York  |  North Carolina  |  Oklahoma  |  Pennsylvania  |  Tennessee  |  Virginia


School of Information Resources and Library Science, University of Arizona - Tucson, AZ
Program Category: Master’s Level Programs
Award Amount: $498,736; Matching Amount: $783,598

Contact: Gina Macaluso
Program Manager

The number of Latinos and Native Americans represented in library and information science professions is extremely low. The University of Arizona School of Information Resources and Library Science will address this inequity in its Connected Learning in Digital Heritage Curation project, which focuses on archives and special collections, medical librarianship, and public librarianship. The project will educate 24 culturally competent master’s degree students to serve Latino and Native American communities in the digital world. Students will gain hands-on experience working as graduate assistants with project partners: the University of Arizona Libraries, Center for Creative Photography, Arizona Health Sciences Library, Pima County Public Library, Arizona Historical Society, Arizona State Museum, Labriola National American Indian Data Center, American Indian Film Gallery, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research and the Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records.



University of Southern California Libraries - Los Angeles, CA
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $439,620; Matching Amount: $124,909

Contact: Marje Schuetze-Coburn

The University of Southern California, in partnership with the Autry National Center and California State University Northridge, will use its grant to launch the L.A. as Subject Residency Program to provide continuing education opportunities for recent MLIS graduates and current staff at community-based archives throughout Southern California. Over the course of the grant period, two cohorts of three residents will receive mentoring and hands on-archival education from the primary project partners, and will then complete a series of rotations within community archives, culminating in a capstone project. L.A. as Subject is a research alliance of 230 historical collections dedicated to preserving and improving access to the diverse histories of Southern California.



Florida State University - Tallahassee, FL
Program Category: Collaborative Planning Grant
Award Amount: $49,990; Matching Amount: $11,070

Contact: Dr. Charles McClure
Director and Professor

Broadband adoption and access to the Internet are viewed as key to creating economic development opportunities in rural America. Researchers from the Information Institute at the Florida State University will collaborate with leaders from Opportunity Florida, the Panhandle Library Access Network, and community organizations in rural northwest Florida on a six-month planning project to identify strategies to promote education, instruction, and broadband planning in rural public libraries, and to create opportunities for local economic development. The overall goal of this planning project is to determine how best to educate rural librarians in order to maximize the benefits of broadband adoption in rural northwest Florida by addressing the following questions: What topics are essential? Who should be involved in the education and planning processes? Which venues are most appropriate and effective for the training based on prior Information Institute research?



Public Library Association - Chicago, IL
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $213,682; Matching Amount: $140,687

Contact: Ms. Barbara Macikas
Executive Director, PLA

The Public Library Association (PLA), a division of the American Library Association, in partnership with the International City/County Management Association, developed the PLA Leadership Academy (successfully piloted in Spring 2013), with an asset-based curriculum that educated librarians on how to build relationships with local government and other agencies. In the Navigating Change and Building Community project, PLA will refine and implement the PLA Leadership Academy, measuring the impact on participants and their libraries. The project team also will convene a meeting of leadership training providers to share evaluation results and best practices and further raise awareness and understanding of the PLA leadership model.


Illinois State Library - Springfield, IL
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $500,000; Matching Amount: $284,577

Contact: Gwendolyn Harrison

The Illinois State Library will expand its successful ILEAD USA program to the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, and hold convenings in the existing ILEAD USA states of Colorado, Ohio, Utah, and Illinois in 2015. ILEAD USA is a leadership and technology immersion program that brings diverse teams of library staff together to work cooperatively over the course of nine months to address a community need related to IMLS priorities. The teams use technology tools to craft a project that meets these needs. Their learning is not only at three in-person sessions, but also virtually during two intersessions.



Department of Information and Library Science, Indiana University - Bloomington, IN
Program Category: Doctoral Programs
Award Amount: $500,000; Matching Amount: $127,618

Contact: Dr. Cassidy Sugimoto
Assistant Professor

Indiana University will support twelve students, including four doctoral students, four Master’s students, and four undergraduates, in the area of scholarly communication and the role of libraries. Because of current issues of open access, electronic publishing, and other digital initiatives, librarians have a great chance of influencing the evolution of scholarly communication. The project will recruit a diverse group of students and provide them with training and experience in scholarly communication. It will create opportunities for the development of new practices and tools; enhance core Masters of Library Science (MLS) curricula; spur the creation of scholarly literature by students; develop students’ leadership skills; and facilitate cooperation among librarians, library and information science faculty, and students.



College of Information Studies, University of Maryland - College Park, MD
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $284,176; Matching Amount: $96,011

Contact: Dr. Ann Weeks
Professor of the Practice

The University of Maryland’s College of Information Studies will use its grant to implement the Lilead Fellows Program, continuing educative initiatives designed specifically to address the professional development needs of district-level school library supervisors. An initial group of 25 Lilead Fellows from school districts across the country will engage in an 18-month program of learning and sharing through a summer institute; networking sessions at national professional conferences; and the Lilead Network, an online community for library supervisors. This project was developed in response to the findings of an IMLS research study that collected baseline data about the roles, responsibilities, demographics, educational backgrounds, and challenges of individuals responsible for managing library services in large and medium-sized school districts across the country.



Graduate School of Library and Information Science, Simmons College - Boston, MA
Program Category: Collaborative Planning Grant
Award Amount: $98,958; Matching Amount: $30,952

Contact: Dr. Eileen Abels

Simmons College will use its grant to host a national forum convening a diverse group of stakeholders to establish a framework for re-visioning library and information science (LIS) education and to begin action planning within that framework. Major questions to be addressed during the forum focus on current and future roles of LIS graduates and the knowledge, skills, and abilities associated with these roles. This forum will result in a white paper that will be used as a catalyst in the transformation of LIS curriculum to better meet the current and future needs of library patrons.



School of Information Science & Learning Technologies, University of Missouri - Columbia, MO
Program Category: Master’s Level Programs
Award Amount: $347,488; Matching Amount: $65,663

Contact: Dr. Denice Adkins
Associate Professor

From 2014-2017, the University of Missouri School of Information Science & Learning Technologies (SISLT) Public Library Leadership Fellows Program will educate a total of 24 students to become Missouri public library leaders. Each year, eight MLS students with an aptitude for public library leadership will be selected to participate in 12 credit hours of coursework, including three classes and one three-hour practicum. The classes - Community Leadership, Leadership for Diversity in Public Libraries, and Public Library Administration and Management - will be team-taught by SISLT faculty and public library managers. Course content will be openly accessible on the Internet. Classes will focus on issues such as working with library boards, legal and financial elements of public libraries, diversity, human resources, and community relations. The practicum will place students in a partner library (Daniel Boone Regional Library, Springfield Public Library, St. Charles City County Library, St. Louis County Library, Mid-Continent Public Library, or Kansas City Public Library) where they will shadow and work with experienced public library administrators and mentors.



Montana State University - Bozeman, MT
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $358,576; Matching Amount: $104,220

Contact: Ms. Mary Anne Hansen
TCLI Coordinator

Montana State University will use its grant to support the Tribal College Librarian Institute, an annual weeklong professional development program for tribal college librarians and archivists. Because of their geographic isolation and relatively low budgets, tribal college librarians often cannot meet regularly with their peers or attend professional conferences.Attendance and participation in TCLI helps fill this void for approximately sixty librarians each year. Since 1991, TCLI has provided continuing education programming across all areas of librarianship that is tailored to the unique needs of tribal college librarians, helping them to develop the information and digital literacy of their communities, as well as other critical skills their users will need to be successful in the 21st century.


New Jersey

School of Communication and Information, Rutgers University - New Brunswick, NJ
Program Category: Research in Early Careers Development
Award Amount: $49,558; Matching Amount: $22,044

Contact: Dr. Ingrid Erickson

Rutgers will use this planning grant to investigate co-working in public libraries, a new form of work organization for workers without offices, freelancers, and entrepreneurs. The project director will work with Plastarc, Inc. architect Melissa Marsh to conduct a pilot study and develop a full research proposal. The project features qualitative research that includes observations, interviews, a survey, and the creation of spatial heat maps to create visual representations of types and amounts of activity that will be used to paint a picture of how library spaces in New York and Seattle are used as public co-working sites. The project also features the use of librarian feedback to determine future directions in supporting work practices that occur in these spaces.


New York

New York State Library - Albany, NY
Program Category: Collaborative Planning Grant
Award Amount: $48,577; Matching Amount: $16,885

Contact: Mrs. Karen Balsen

The New York State Library will use its planning grant to develop a new program to improve the quality of early literacy services and programs delivered by over 1,000 public libraries and neighborhood branches across the state. This plan will provide library staff with skills and knowledge in community assessment, creation of library early learning spaces, effective outreach strategies, and the delivery of quality parent/caregiver education for diverse audiences. During the planning phase of the project, activities will focus on the development of partnerships, a comprehensive statewide continuing education plan leveraging new technologies and in-person training, the development of resources to support training needs and service delivery, and plans for evaluation and sustainability of the project’s eventual implementation phase.


South Central Regional Library Council - Ithaca, NY
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $336,665; Matching Amount: $309,422

Contact: Ms. Mary-Carol Lindbloom
Executive Director

Design for Learning: 21st Century Online Teaching and Learning Skills for Library Workers is a three-year continuing education development and implementation partnership project among the South Central Regional Library Council, Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies, and the NY 3Rs Association, Inc. The project will 1) enable librarian-trainer participants to successfully transfer their in-person teaching skills and pedagogy to the online environment, 2) enable librarian-trainers to evaluate and gain experience with various delivery platforms, and 3) teach library workers to learn effectively in the online environment. Project results and all materials, including the modules/units, best practices, and presentations, will be freely available to the library community via the project website, LibGuides, WebJunction, and other relevant sites.


Queens Borough Public Library - Jamaica, NY
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $398,855; Matching Amount: $418,837

Contact: Mr. Fred Gitner

Queens Borough Public Library will use its grant to design and implement the Librarian Digital & Integration Gateway Project, a professional development program for 400 librarians with the purpose of improving libraries’ immigrant services. The curriculum will focus on the digital literacy and integration support needs of foreign-born populations and be organized around four learning modules: Immigrant and Community Needs; Digital Tools & Technological Resources; Immigrant Case Management; and Citizenship and Integration Support. The project will be sustained through product development and dissemination, internal in-service and turnkey training, and external visiting librarian practicums.


School of Information Studies, Syracuse University - Syracuse, NY
Program Category: Research in Early Careers Development
Award Amount: $386,030; Matching Amount: $88,979

Contact: Dr. Bei Yu
Assistant Professor

Syracuse University will use this Early Career award to build the Citation Opinion Retrieval and Analysis (CORA) tool. The tool will help researchers get citation statements about published literature and will help them analyze and classify citations to assist and expedite research. The tool can plug into a full-text bibliographic database and will save librarians and researchers time when trying to find useful comments from large collections of citations. CORA will also contribute a new approach for assessing research impact and help monitor the quality of scientific publications by making it easier to identify citation bias and inaccuracy. The project supports one doctoral student and hourly graduate students to assist with project research and development.


North Carolina

University Library, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - Chapel Hill, NC
Program Category: Master’s Level Programs
Award Amount: $491,908; Matching Amount: $135,019

Contact: Heather Gendron

The Learning from Artists Archives program, a collaboration between the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s University Library, its School of Information and Library Science (SILS), and its art department, will educate and train art information professions in the skills and subject expertise they will need to collect and care for contemporary visual artists archives and related media-based artworks. Six fellows will learn about the legacy needs of North Carolina artists through a program of studio archives preservation outreach days at North Carolina art museums and through internships in art archives and working with artists and specialists in archives, museums, and libraries. Fellows will participate in the design and delivery of outreach and training programs to communities of North Carolina artists.


Department of Library Science and Instructional Technology, East Carolina University - Greenville, NC
Program Category: Master’s Level Programs
Award Amount: $494,324; Matching Amount: $165,045

Contact: Dr. John Harer
Associate Professor

Rural public schools in the economically depressed communities of eastern North Carolina face daunting challenges in recruiting and retaining school librarians. East Carolina University and its partner, the North Carolina School Library Media Association, will recruit and educate 30 MLS school librarians from economically disadvantaged and historically underrepresented backgrounds and place them in school library media centers. The project will use the “grow your own” model, focusing on individuals who want to stay and work in eastern North Carolina by completing their degrees in an all-online degree program.



School of Library and Information Studies, University of Oklahoma - Norman, OK
Program Category: Research in Early Careers Development
Award Amount: $354,367; Matching Amount: $0

Contact: kyungwon Koh

The University of Oklahoma will increase knowledge about how youths create information and how information professionals can help them become successful information creators by promoting their information and digital literacies and other 21st century skills. This Early Career research project builds on existing research and results of previously funded IMLS Learning Labs by investigating how twenty-four middle school students engaged in project-based, guided-inquiry STEM learning to create information in a school library Learning Lab/Makerspace. The project will result in a model of information-creating behavior that can help develop a groundbreaking approach to information literacy instructions and creative programs.



College of Computing and Informatics, Drexel University - Philadelphia, PA
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $498,773; Matching Amount: $200,315

Contact: Dr. Jung-ran Park
Assistant Professor
(215) 899-1669;

Drexel University’s continuing education project will develop a new approach to providing access to resources and opportunities for all levels of cataloging and metadata professionals nationwide. Librarians face a pressing need to engage fully in the challenges associated with digital information such as current developments and emerging trends in metadata standards and digital technologies. The project features the building of a self-sustaining digital repository for people to find and access professional development resources for self-directed lifelong learning; a collaborative virtual platform for professionals to communicate, mentor, and share library projects, applications, and best practices; and the creation of an open-source webinar series with sequential learning modules to enhance professionals’ in-depth knowledge and skills. The project supports one Ph.D. student and two Master’s students.


College of Computing and Informatics, Drexel University - Philadelphia, PA
Program Category: Research in Early Careers Development
Award Amount: $294,536; Matching Amount: $137,282

Contact: Deborah Turner
Assistant Professor

This three-year Early Career research project investigates ways to meet the information needs of people who are underserved, namely the urban poor who face issues unaddressed in the delivery of many digitized library services. This project will help library and informal science professionals and researchers gain understanding of how oral information services may be designed, organized, and managed. The project director will work with community and library staff in urban public libraries to investigate the needs of patrons who are poor, design library services to meet those needs, and evaluate the services with the goal of improving service models. The project supports one doctoral student.


Allegheny County Library Association - Pittsburgh, PA
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $73,955; Matching Amount: $78,760

Contact: Ms. Kristin Rama

The Allegheny County Library Association will partner with ASSET, Inc. to provide professional development in principles of STEM education (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and inquiry-based practices to youth service librarians representing 45 libraries. Participating librarians will learn strategies to incorporate these concepts into the design and implementation of programming in a library setting. In addition to hosting a series of workshops over the grant period, the project will develop an online community of practice and specific training for library directors and trustees on the importance of incorporating STEM principles into library programming. Upon completion of this training, participating librarians will be better equipped to design and implement engaging STEM programming that will help students to supplement in-school STEM learning, which research suggests may lead students to pursue STEM-related careers.



School of Information Sciences, University of Tennessee - Knoxville, TN
Program Category: Master’s Level Programs
Award Amount: $438,991; Matching Amount: $131,584

Contact: Dr. Suzanne Allard
Associate Professor

The University of Tennessee School of Information Sciences, in partnership with the University of New Mexico Libraries, will engage in a capacity-building project to educate six master’s students in the area of scientific data curation with a special emphasis on team science. The project team will develop a variety of coursework and hands-on research experience centered on learning to work with interdisciplinary teams and mentor the students through research experiences that will help them apply what they have learned in the setting of team science. In addition to coursework and research, the students will travel to New Mexico to visit the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the University of New Mexico Libraries, and the DataONE offices.



Rare Book School, University of Virginia - Charlottesville, VA
Program Category: Continuing Education
Award Amount: $279,830; Matching Amount: $141,237

Contact: Dr. Michael Suarez
Director of the Rare Book School

The Rare Book School at the University of Virginia (RBS@UVA) will use its grant to fund a fellowship program that will provide two cohorts of 20 early career librarians, with a special emphasis on recruiting participants currently underrepresented within the profession. Through participation in the Rare Book School and participation n the Rare Books and Manuscripts section of American Library Association, fellows will build the skills, knowledge, and professional networks necessary to bridge the gap between their education and the positions currently available in special collections libraries. The project will also include a replicable, longitudinal study of the program's impact on the professional development and career growth of participating fellows.