Author Archives: Kara Malenfant

ACRL Announces Recipients of Sponsored Scholarships to OpenCon

OpenCon 2017The ACRL Research and the Scholarly Environment Committee (ReSEC) is pleased to announce the selection of Tatiana Bryant and Cynthia Orozco as sponsored scholarship recipients to attend OpenCon 2017 in Berlin, Germany, November 11-13. Cynthia Orozco is Librarian for Equitable Services at East Los Angeles College, Calif., and Tatiana Bryant is Digital Projects and Engagement Librarian at the University of Oregon.

“We are thrilled to award Tatiana and Cynthia these scholarships,” remarked ReSEC chair Patricia Hswe, program officer for Scholarly Communications at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. “Cynthia’s campus outreach about Open Education Resources in a community college setting and Tatiana’s research focus on the participation of minority scholars in open access publishing align strongly with the mission and purpose behind OpenCon. ReSEC will be fortunate to have them as committee members, starting in 2018.”

OpenCon 2017 is designed to serve as a powerful catalyst for projects led by the next generation of scholars and researchers to advance Open Access, Open Education and Open Data. In addition to attending OpenCon, Tatiana and Cynthia will be appointed for 2-year terms on ACRL ReSEC to build on what they’ve gained by contributing to ACRL’s scholarly communication initiative.

ALA Policy Corps Launches

Policy Corp logoAmerican Library Association (ALA) President Jim Neal recently launches and invites library advocates to apply for participation in the inaugural ALA Policy Corps initiative.

The presidential initiative is grounded in the ALA’s four strategic directions and the National Policy Agenda for Libraries that emerged out of the Policy Revolution! initiative. Its goals include developing policy experts available to ALA and the ALA Washington Office, creating longevity in expertise and engagement in early to mid-career library and information professionals, and positively impacting national public policy in areas key to ALA’s strategic goals.

ACRL worked with other ALA units including the Office for Information Technology Policy, American Association of School Librarians, Public Library Association, and United for Libraries in developing this program. This support includes a $10,000 contribution from the ACRL Board of Directors. The Board is confident that the Policy Corp will develop national policy advocates necessary to advancing the profession and ACRL will continue to serve as an active partner in the initiative.

The Corps will launch with an initial cohort of 10-12 participants with diverse representation from across library types and geographies. Participants will cultivate their passion and deep expertise for a public policy issue; create or enhance the skill set needed to impact legislation and policy; mentor others on a given policy issue of interest; participate in a cohort to share challenges and successes; and ultimately impact national, state and local policymaking.

The characteristics of successful applicants include:

  • ALA membership;
  • At least five years of library experience;
  • Past advocacy experience at the local, state, national and/or international level;
  • Desire to develop one’s policy advocacy skills and apply them over a period of years
  • Solid speaking and writing skills;
  • Awareness of and ability to express the impact of legislation and policy on their community, type of library and/or patrons;
  • Commitment to keeping current on policy-related library issues and to building and supporting a strong, national network of advocates over time;
  • Ability to make and sustain a five-year commitment; and
  • Support from a library or educational institution.

Preference will be given to applicants with prior engagement in ALA such as service on boards, committees or other entities and/or participation in professional development or scholarship programs.

The application process for the 2018 ALA Policy Corps is now open. Applications, available on the ALA Policy Corps web page, will be accepted through Friday, November 3, 2017.


Seeking Feedback on Draft of Revised Standards for Libraries in Higher Education

slheAn ACRL task force seeks comments on a draft of potential changes to the the Standards for Libraries in Higher Education (SLHE) before completing final revisions and submitting the standards for approval. Like all ACRL standards and guidelines, these are subject to a regular cyclical review. Please review the draft document and provide feedback either by attending an upcoming online open forum or by submitting your comments through an online feedback form by Tuesday, September 12.

Join the free online open forum Seeking Feedback on Draft of Revised Standards for Libraries in Higher Education on Wednesday, September 6, from 1:00 — 2:00 p.m. Central time (11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Pacific | 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Mountain | 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. Eastern. Convert additional time zones online.)

How to Register
Submit your free registration online by September 5, 2017. Login details will be sent via email the morning of September 6. The webcast will be recorded and made available shortly after the live event.

Tech Check
The online open forum takes place in a WebEx meeting room. Make certain you have an updated version of Java. Make sure you have the most recent WebEx software by checking the system requirements. This especially applies to users accessing the meeting through a mobile device. We recommend a USB headset. Please allow a few minutes to get in and test your audio, etc. before the start time.

The SLHE, adopted in 2011, are designed to guide academic libraries in advancing and sustaining their role as partners in educating students, achieving their institutions’ missions, and positioning libraries as leaders in assessment and continuous improvement on their campuses. Libraries in higher education are increasingly required to demonstrate their value and document their contributions to overall institutional effectiveness and be prepared to address changes in higher education. The SLHE is a framework for library planning and assessment that can be used for a variety of circumstances including annual planning, program review, and accreditation self-study.

Contact the task force chair Andrea Falcone at or (303) 352-3953.

Continuing the Fight For an Open Internet for All

In comments filed Monday, July 17, 2017, at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), ALA questioned the need to review current net neutrality rules and urged regulators to maintain the strong, enforceable rules already in place. These comments, filed with the American Association of Law Libraries and the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies, made clear that libraries and our communities depend on fair access to broadband networks for basic services like connecting people to unbiased research, job searches, e-government services, health information and economic opportunity. ACRL, which has long advocated for the open internet, contributed to drafting of these comments and provided examples from academic library contexts. Net neutrality remains a priority issue for ACRL.

The Association of Research Libraries also submitted comments to the FCC, joining with eight higher education associations. Both sets of comments hearken back to important net neutrality principles previously issued by these library and higher education groups and urge policymakers to endorse them.

ACRL OpenCon 2017 Scholarship Opportunity: Shape the Future of Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data!

OpenCon 2017Join the next generation of advocates and scholars to shape the future of Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data!

Are you a librarian who’s passionate about opening up access to educational and scholarly resources? Keen on being part of a community that’s dedicated to and engaged in OA advocacy? Then OpenCon 2017 is the conference and community for you. Now in its fourth year, you must apply and be selected to attend OpenCon in person. (Anyone can attend remotely; find out more about satellite venues and other opportunities for participating in the community virtually.)

ACRL is providing scholarship funding for two librarians to attend OpenCon 2017 in Berlin, Germany, November 11-13. To be eligible for selection, just follow the OpenCon application process and instructions. If you are a librarian and have already applied, then great! If you are chosen to participate in OpenCon and are an ACRL member, you will be considered for an ACRL-sponsored scholarship. Your information will be conveyed to a group of ACRL member leaders for review and selection.

Besides the benefit of attending OpenCon, each recipient of the ACRL-sponsored scholarships will also be appointed for a 2-year term on ACRL’s Research and the Scholarly Environment Committee! Thus, if selected, you’ll have a chance to build on what you gained from OpenCon and contribute to scholarly communication initiatives that ACRL works on.

The application deadline is August 1, 2017. Apply soon and have a chance to attend OpenCon on an ACRL scholarship!

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