Last November, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) convened experts to explore how to strengthen the formal education component of the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian grant program to best support library and information science programs to meet the needs of students and libraries while increasing diversity within the library and archives professions. I’m excited to share that this report which I coauthored, “Positioning Library and Information Science Graduate Programs for 21st Century Practice,” is now available.

Discussion throughout the day centered on recruiting and educating LIS students as well as recruiting, hiring, and retaining LIS professionals, and focused on addressing:

  • Where are the knowledge gaps between formal library and information science education graduates and the needs of hiring managers in libraries and archives?
  • What kinds of curricular changes are necessary in master’s and PhD programs to keep up with the changing needs of practitioners into the future?
  • How can we identify, develop, and refine strategies to recruit, train, and retain diverse professionals?

The report highlights the issues discussed, summarizes the overarching themes, and encourages future grant proposals to address field-wide concerns. We are thrilled to have partnered with IMLS on this important report and look forward to seeing how the higher education community continues to address these field-wide issues.