Reminder: Immersion ’16 applications due 12/4

Friday, December 4, 2015 is the deadline to apply to Immersion ’16 (Teacher and Program tracks).  The ACRL Immersion Program provides instruction librarians the opportunity to work intensively for several days on all aspects of information literacy. Whether your institution is just beginning to think about implementing an information literacy component or whether you have a program well under way, the Immersion Program will provide you with the intellectual tools and practical techniques to build or enhance your institution’s instruction program.

“This blew my mind. I fully intend to change how I teach and influence the information literacy program on my campus.” ~  Immersion Program Participant

Immersion ’16 (Teacher and Program tracks) will be held at Champlain College in Burlington, VT, July 24-29, 2016.  Acceptance to Immersion ’16 is competitive to ensure an environment that fosters group interaction and active participation.  Applications are due December 4, 2015.

Teacher Track focuses on individual development for those who are interested in refreshing, enhancing, or extending their individual instruction skills. Curriculum includes classroom techniques, learning theory, leadership, and assessment framed in the context of information literacy. Program Track focuses on developing, integrating, and managing institutional and programmatic information literacy programs.  Change dynamics, systems thinking, institutional outcomes assessment, scalability, and the integration of teaching, learning, and technology will be brought to bear on analyzing the various programmatic challenges presented in case studies developed prior to the program.

Complete details and application materials are available online.  Questions about ACRL Immersion ’16 programs should be directed to Margot Conahan at

Member of the Week: John Sandstrom

John SandstromJohn Sandstrom is Acquisitions Librarian at the New Mexico State University Library in Las Cruces, New Mexico. John has been an ACRL member since 2008 and is your ACRL member of the week for November 23, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Dedicated, over-booked, curious.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device)? As a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Administration, my current reading list is skewed from normal. Right now I’m reading Critical Race Theory: The Key Writings that Formed the Movement, edited by Crenshaw,; Red Pedagogy: Native American Social and Political Thought by Sandy Grande; Social Justice in Education by Barry L. Bull; and Theory of Justice by John Rawls.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Open, informative, transformative.

4. What do you value about ACRL? What I value most about ACRL are the networking opportunities. Being able to join with others in our profession with the same, or at least related, concerns, values, and experiences is a great way to stay up-to-date and grow as an academic librarian.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? As the Acquisitions Librarian for a Tier 1 institution, I know that I contribute to all the research done on my campus by being the gateway between our researchers and the growing universe of information available through online tools and resources.

6. In your own words: As an academic librarian who has experience as both a public librarian and a vendor, I am familiar with the wide variety of experiences available in the field of librarianship. Unfortunately, this isn’t enough. Libraries of all types are finding themselves under attach. Out budgets are being reduced, our usefulness is being questioned, and our place is being questioned, not only in the academy but in society in general. Libraries have a critical role to play in society and academia but to make sure people remember that role; we need to be flexible in how we present ourselves and our services. Developing the skills to achieve this flexibility requires all librarians to move outside our comfort zones and to reach out to our constituents and meet them on their own ground intellectually, theoretically, and practically.

Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at for more information.

Take Action For School Libraries

I am excited to share that Congress finally may be poised to act definitively on ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Education Act) very soon. According to the ALA Washington Office, we could know as early as next week whether watershed language for school libraries included in the Senate’s Every Child Achieves Act (S.1177) makes it into the final “Conference Report” on ESEA that is being hammered out now between House and Senate negotiators from the two chambers’ quite different bills.

While we are hopeful that libraries will have something to be very thankful for this Thanksgiving or just after the holiday, we aren’t done yet! As soon as the ALA Washington Office learns what is actually in the new compromise bill language, they will be posting an alert to the Legislative Action Center with instructions for how you can help (including talking points you can use to call and email Congress). That will be our opportunity to make sure that every Member of the House of Representatives hears from librarians – thumbs up or thumbs down as the case may be – before they vote on the ESEA Conference Report as early as December 2. At that time, we will be calling on each of you to reach out not only to your individual Representative, but also to encourage your friends, family, and coworkers to take action as well.

The more voices that speak up on behalf of school libraries, the better! Please keep your eyes peeled and your ears open for the upcoming alert. Thank you!

Ann Campion Riley
2015-16 ACRL President

Entrepreneurial Colleague Wanted!

As many of you may know, I am retiring from my work as ACRL Content Strategist in early 2016 and we’re currently inviting applications to fill the position. As someone who has held this position for almost 9 years, I can speak to the fun and excitement of the job as well as to the fantastic culture of working at ALA and ACRL in particular!

The Work

The entrepreneurial person who is selected for this position will have great autonomy and will be charged with pushing the envelope on new publishing and distribution models for books. The ACRL Content Strategist has great and knowledgeable thinking partners in ACRL Executive Director Mary Ellen Davis, Choice Editor and Publisher Mark Cummings, and the rest of the fantastic ACRL team.

The person who steps into the position will work with the ACRL New Publications Advisory Board to discover new book-worthy content, authors, and editors in the academic library world who can bring the profession to life and add to our professional literature. The Content Strategist uses their network of contacts to reach those who might have an interest in publishing but didn’t know that ACRL is the only non-profit publisher focused specifically on academic libraries and librarianship. There is still a lot to do to expand our program and to explore new ways of supporting academic librarians in their research and writing. Growth is greatly supported here (both personally and programmatically)!

In addition, if you are that lucky person to be the next ACRL Content Strategist you will get to work with the manager of ACRL’s Professional Development programs to look for new e-learning topics and presenters in current and emerging issues of interest to academic librarians, archivists, and library educators. The position comes with a unique opportunity to create connections between ACRL’s book publishing and e-learning programs.

The Environment

Working at ACRL is a joy. One of the things I value about my position is being both trusted and supported by my team of fabulous colleagues. The ACRL team is a high performing group of people with lots of ideas and energy. We work on a daily basis, in partnership with ACRL members, to make good things happen for academic libraries and librarians. Are you intrigued yet?

If you want to work in a creative, dynamic place that will both push you and support you; if you want to have a job where you can really be creative and experimental; if you want to work with colleagues who are great; and if you want to really make a difference for the profession of academic librarianship, you should look at this job right now! I know you’ll love it as much as I do.

Volunteer for Newly Formed ACRL Libraries Transform Task Force by December 15

At its Fall Board Meeting on October 23, 2015, the ACRL Board of Directors approved the ACRL Libraries Transform Task Force to support the new ALA advocacy campaign. ACRL President Ann Campion Riley invites you to volunteer to serve on this newly created task force. Please see the following charge, tasks and timeline:

Charge: To develop messages and resources that will address the needs of academic and research libraries using the new ALA campaign, Libraries Transform.


  • To develop and suggest to ALA new “Because” statements for the campaign.
  • To develop resources that ALA can use on its campaign website, e.g., suggest individuals for interview, libraries to spotlight.
  • To review the Academic and Research Libraries marketing materials developed for the ALA @ Your Library Campaign and revise/update or recommend removal from the website as needed.


Dates interim reports are due:

  • 2016 ALA Annual Conference (new “Because” statements can be suggested prior to a report).
  • 2017 ALA Midwinter Meeting.
  • If there are new resources developed, they should be available at the ACRL 2017 Conference.

Date final report is due: 2017 ALA Annual Conference.

The deadline to volunteer for the ACRL Libraries Transform Task Force is December 15, 2015. If you wish to be considered for appointment, complete the volunteer form on the ACRL website.

Note: Due to the timeline of this task force, the process is separate from the annual division-level and section appointments. Information on those appointments will be posted in December.

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