ACRL Funds 2012 Spectrum Scholar Charlotte King

Charlotte KingAs part of our commitment to furthering diversity in librarianship, ACRL is supporting Charlotte King as its 2012-2013 Spectrum Scholar. King will attend the San Jose State University School of Library and Information Science.

Prior to entering library school, King had a career dedicated to under served communities. She worked at the Illinois Humanities Council, where she organized a wide range of humanities and arts-based public programs, and is currently employed at the Parkinson’s Association of San Diego, where she is developing an initiative to provide wide access to free health education courses. King solidified her interest in academic libraries through a summer internship at the University of California – San Diego.

“My wish is to work not just for patrons,” she said.  “But alongside them in creating library spaces that are collaborative, engaging, contextual and active.”

King’s academic interests include open access, digital and information literacy instruction, cultural heritage archives and collection development. She hopes to work closely with first generation students of color to help them succeed in a college environment.

“I hope to provide culturally competent scholarship and advocate for all patrons through a diverse perspective within academia,” King noted.

Since 1999, ACRL has provided more than $80,000 to the Spectrum Scholar Program. In addition, ACRL assists scholars through mentoring and conference assistance. The ACRL Dr. E.J. Josey Spectrum Mentor Committee supports Spectrum Scholars with an interest in academic libraries by pairing them with a trained mentor from an academic library. The committee has paired more than 70 Spectrum Scholars with mentors since 2003 and is working to pair interested current scholars and scholars from the incoming Spectrum class. ACRL also provides four scholarship awards that support travel for the attendance of Spectrum Scholars at ACRL Conferences.

“Increasing diversity in the academic and research library field is a major strategic priority of our association,” said ACRL President Steven J. Bell of Temple University. “The Spectrum Scholarship Program provides wonderful learning and mentoring opportunities for future librarians and ACRL is proud to continue our support of this important initiative.”

Established in 1997, the Spectrum Scholarship Program is ALA’s national effort to increase diversity in the profession by recruiting and providing scholarships that allow students from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds to become librarians. Spectrum Scholars improve service at the local level because they reflect the communities served by libraries in today’s changing world. Spectrum has provided nearly 800 scholarships to qualified applicants enrolled in an ALA-accredited graduate program in library and information studies or an AASL-recognized School Library program. To learn more about the Spectrum Scholarship Program, visit www.ala.org/spectrum.

To get involved or to make a donation to the Spectrum Scholarship Program, contact ALA Office for Diversity and Spectrum Assistant Director Gwendolyn Prellwitz at gprellwitz@ala.org.