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news & notes: january 2018

Get to know Miguel Ruiz (MS '13), Latino engagement librarian

Evanston, Illinois, has a growing Latino population—over 10% according to 2015 figures. Building connections with the Latino community served by the Evanston Public Library is what Miguel Ruiz likes best about his job. Read more.

Recent graduates—Stay connected!
Congratulations to our recent graduates! As you start your new career and enter the next phase of your life, remember to stay in touch with us. The iSchool offers many ways to stay connected with former classmates as well as to keep up with School news and trends in the field. Find out how you can stay connected on the New Graduates page.
Alumni receive Up and Comer Awards

Four iSchool alumni have received the Up and Comer Award from ATG Media. Sarah E. (Crissinger) Hare (MS '15), Hailley Fargo (MS '16), Maoria Kirker (MS '11), and Katrina Spencer (MS '16) are among the twenty individuals who were selected for the award, which is intended for early-career librarians and information professionals. Read more.

Alumni Connections Facebook group

If you’re on Facebook and would like to be more involved with the iSchool, please join the iSchool Alumni Connections group. You’ll find information about your fellow alumni, discussion on professional activities, and updates (some serious, many humorous) about the School and University. It’s a great way to reconnect!

Chicago networking opportunity
Job seekers are invited to attend our inaugural Library Career & Networking Fair on March 9, 2018, from 2:30-5:00 p.m. at Loyola University in Chicago. Participating employers will include Loyola University, the University of Illinois at Chicago, the Art Institute, Skokie Public Library, the Newberry Library, and many more. Workshops will be held in late February/early March for those who wish to prepare for the event. Participants must register through Handshake. Don't have a Handshake account? Sign up online. Employers interested in participating should directly contact Michele Plante, employer relations coordinator.
Engage with current students
Offer a facilities tour, include the student in project meetings, introduce the student to colleagues and their roles, host a panel discussion, or simply have the student accompany you through daily tasks like staffing a reference desk—these are a few of the experiences you can offer through our job shadow program. Students in the program will have the opportunity to not only learn about your job but also to gain a better sense of the required competencies. To host a student, sign up online. Ensure that current iSchool students start off on the right foot by helping them polish their resumes. Long-distance resume critique sessions will be held from February 12-16. Fill out this online form to sign up as a volunteer.
student life
Jacobs authors book on transforming libraries for youth

Master's student Brittany Jacobs is the author of the recently published book, Transforming Your Library into a Learning Playground. It explains how librarians can create affordable and effective educational programs for youth by focusing on play and existing programs such as the makerspace, story time, and book clubs. Read more.

McCarthy receives information technology scholarship

MS student Mark McCarthy has received the Stan Yellott Scholarship from the Rocky Mountain Oracle Users Group. The award provides financial support to students interested in pursuing studies related to information technology. McCarthy is certified in information accessibility, design, and policy and has earned several certificates in cybersecurity. Read more.

around the School
The Hidden Life of a Toad receives Gryphon Award

The Hidden Life of a Toad, written and illustrated with photographs by Doug Wechsler, and published by Charlesbridge, is the winner of the 2018 Gryphon Award for Children's Literature. The Gryphon Award, which includes a $1,000 prize, is given annually by the Center for Children's Books (CCB). Read more.

Bulletin announces 2017 Blue Ribbon winners

The staff at The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (BCCB) has announced the 2017 Blue Ribbons, their choices for the best of children's and young adult literature for the year. Blue Ribbons are chosen annually by BCCB reviewers and represent what they believe to be outstanding examples of fiction, nonfiction, and picture books for youth. Read more.

Increased enrollment due to recruitment efforts

The recruitment and admissions team participated in 23 recruitment events last semester, which resulted in over 100 new contacts with prospective students. This year there are plans to attend recruitment events in California, Illinois, Missouri, and Ohio. The School's recruitment efforts led to record enrollment in Fall 2017 and a 50% increase in the number of applications for Summer/Fall 2018. Read more.

faculty news
Hoiem awarded NEH Fellowship

Assistant Professor Elizabeth Massa Hoiem is one of six Illinois faculty members who have been awarded National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships for 2018. It is the third year in the last four that the Urbana campus has garnered more fellowship awards than any other single institution. Read more.

New curriculum will equip students when faced with ethical dilemmas in cybersecurity

To better prepare cybersecurity students to manage the heavy burden of responsibility that comes with access to information and technological skills, Assistant Professor Masooda Bashir is working with University of Illinois researchers to develop an academic curriculum focused specifically on cybersecurity ethics. Read more.

Schneider receives NIH funding for biomedical informatics research

Assistant Professor Jodi Schneider (MS ’08) has received funding from the National Institutes of Health to develop a series of automated informatics tools for reviewing medical literature more quickly and easily. Schneider is co-principal investigator with Neil Smalheiser, associate professor of psychiatry at UIC, and Aaron Cohen, a professor at Oregon Health & Science University. Read more.

Humanists win major grant to explore the future of the historical record

The Humanities Without Walls Consortium has awarded a grant for scholars at Illinois, including Associate Professor Bonnie Mak, to build a curriculum that works across the entire life cycle of sources, from their initial identification, to their preservation and publication, to their use within education, research, and public history. Read more.


Visit our newsroom page to see the latest School news.

class notes
 Submit your own class note.

Betsy Bowers Aldridge (MS '76) is retiring from PACCAR Technical Library after over 23 years of service. Prior to that, she worked as a librarian for the EPA, library director for Oklahoma Baptist University, and tenured assistant professor for East Central Oklahoma State University. She has served the Special Libraries Association as treasurer for the Transportation Division and chair of the Materials & Manufacturing Division. She is looking forward to having more time to focus on raising her 6-year-old grandson and reading just for fun.

Candice Baldwin (MS '78) retired in December as library director at Metropolitan Community College, Longview Campus Library, after working there almost 15 years. Since graduating from the University of Illinois, she has spent 28 years with community colleges, seven years with the federal government (U.S. Army), and five years with public libraries.

Aaron Collie (MS '10) has accepted a digital library manager position for the Federal Reserve Archival System for Economic Research (FRASER) at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. Collie previously served as the head of Digital Scholarship & Curation at Michigan State University.

Irene Hansen (MS '88, CAS '95) recently moved to Fountain Hills, Arizona, to be near her sister and family. She served as a reference librarian for ten years at the Wisconsin Historical Society Library in Madison and hopes to find a reference and information services position in an Arizona library. She is very excited to enjoy warmer winters.

Patt Leonard (MS '93) is now editor of the AzLA Newsletter of the Arizona Library Association.

Gerone Lockhart (MS '16) became the theological librarian at Calvin College & Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

James L. McMillan (MS '95), a senior technical support engineer for Idemia, has been elected to a three-year term on the Board of Directors of the Disciples of Christ Historical Society in Bethany, West Virginia.

Gail Murray (MS '15) was promoted to technical coordinator at the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, where she manages the statewide interlibrary loan platform.

Ruth D. Nelson (MS '14) was selected for the 2018 Illinois Humanities Council Road Scholars program, which invites Illinois writers, historians, folklorists, and musicians, among others, to share their expertise and enthusiasm with people throughout the state. Her selection as a Road Scholar was based on her book, Searching for Marquette, which tells the story of Fr. Jacques Marquette, the seventeeth-century French Jesuit explorer, through monuments and artwork throughout the Midwest.

Susie (Woo) Rivera (MS '17) accepted a reference specialist position focusing on digital library services and 3D printing at Fondulac District Library in East Peoria, Illinois.

Lynne Rudasill (MS '91) has been promoted to professor at the University of Illinois, where she serves as global studies librarian and political science subject specialist in the University Library.

Helenmary Sheridan (MS '15) began a new position as the data services librarian for the Health Sciences Library System at the University of Pittsburgh.

Quinn Stitt (MS '16) has accepted a position as a readers advisory/teen librarian at Berwyn (IL) Public Library, starting in January 2018.

Nicole Wilhelms (MS '08) is the library manager of Southglenn and Castlewood Libraries at Arapahoe Libraries in Centennial, Colorado.


Visit our class notes page to see more.

upcoming events

MS/IM Virtual Information Session
February 6, 7:00-8:00 p.m.

MS/LIS Virtual Information Session
February 8, 7:00-8:00 p.m.

Storytelling Your Career with Kate McDowell
February 9, 12:00 p.m.
In-person and online

2017 Downs Award Reception
Honoring the Kansas City Public Library
February 10, 5:30-7:00 p.m., Ellingwood Rooms A and B
Crowne Plaza Downtown Denver, Colorado

ICE 2018 Conference
February 26-28, Schaumburg, Illinois

MS/IM Virtual Information Session
March 6, 7:00-8:00 p.m.

MS/LIS Virtual Information Session
March 8, 7:00-8:00 p.m.

iSchool Library Networking & Career Fair
March 9, 2:30-5:00 p.m.
Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois

iSchool Master's Student Showcase
April 6, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
In-person and online

iSchool Convocation
May 13, 4:30 p.m.