Transforming Libraries: New Roles and Impact
A Professional Development and Leadership Program for Library and Information Science (LIS) Professionals
June 3 – 26, 2024
The 2024 Mortenson Center Associates Program will offer individuals working in a library and/or information services setting outside the United States an opportunity to explore critical issues and trends in the library field and engage with librarians implementing cutting-edge programs and services.
Transforming Libraries: New Roles and Impact – A Professional Development and Leadership Program for Library and Information Science (LIS) Professionals will engage participants in learning about novel and inventive practices and services in areas such as:
- User-centered Services
- Sustainable Development
- Emerging Trends and Technologies
- Leadership, Communication and Managing Change
- Library Assessment and Impact
- Digital and Print Collections and Repositories
- Multiple literacies
- International Professional Networking
Accepting Applications for the 2024 Mortenson Associates Program
For more information and to apply, please download the and see below for more information.
NOTE: Please attach all the applications materials in a single email, including the application form in or or format.
*Deadline for Applications Extended to December 15, 2023
- Information Session | 17 October 2023; 7:00am CT (Chicago) [To find your local time for this information session, visit www.worldtimebuddy.com]
Watch the recording to learn about the 2024 program and meet past Associates.
2024 Program Highlights
Download the here
- Seminars and Workshops which provide an overview of current trends in the field. Library experts will be invited to share their perspectives, offer expertise, and foster conversations on the themes of communication and leadership. in order to transform libraries, which are evidence-based, sustainable and user-centered.
- Tours of a variety of libraries, including academic, public, and school libraries. We may also visit the American Library Association headquarters in Chicago, Illinois and other sites of interest.
- Networking with dynamic group of international colleagues during and post-program.
- Participants will develop individual action plans, appropriate to their professional and institutional needs, and will receive post-program implementation review.
- Each participant will receive a Certificate of Program Participation upon completion.
- Scheduling to allow participants to attend the Annual Meeting of the American Library Association (ALA), if they wish.
- The 2024 ALA Annual Conference will be in San Diego, June 27-July 2, 2024. Arrangements and registration for the conference must be made separately and are not included in program costs.
Program activities will begin on 3 June 2024. The last day of program activities will be 26 June 2024.
15 December 2023: Application Deadline
All application materials must be submitted by 15 December 2023, including a fully completed application and 3 supplementary documents.
11 January 2024: Notification of Application Status
All applicants will be notified of application status by 11 January 2024 (end of business CST). Applicants accepted to the Mortenson Center Associates Program must send a non-refundable $USD 200.00 deposit by 15 February 2024 in order to hold their place in the program. Payment instructions will be provided upon acceptance or after 11 January 2024.
15 February 2024: Deposit Payment Due
$USD 200.00 Deposit Due (all deposit payments are non-refundable)
1 April 2024: Remaining Balance Payment Due
Remaining Balance Due
- Application (typed and signed) must be submitted in English along with the 3 supporting documents in order to be considered.
- Applicants must secure adequate funding to support a stay at the Mortenson Center in order to be accepted into the program.
- This program is delivered in English only. Participants should be fluent in conversational English and possess a reading knowledge of English.
Applications are open for the 2024 Mortenson Associates Program. We invite your applications and encourage interested participants to submit questions to email@example.com.
Download Application Form HERE:
The cost for the 2024 Mortenson Associates Program is $4,000 USD.
Program costs are paid prior to the program’s start date and include:
- Housing (student-style accommodations while on campus and hotel accommodations while on out-of-town excursions)
- Partial meals
- Local transportation
- Programming costs
- Speaker fees
- Medical insurance
- Other materials and logistics
The program cost does not include visa application, airfare and/or ground transportation costs to and from Champaign-Urbana. These arrangements must be funded and arranged by individual participants.
Applicants accepted by the Mortenson Center must send a $200 USD deposit in order to hold their place in the program. This non-refundable deposit will be deducted from your program fees.
- 15 February 2024 – $200 USD – Deposit Due (all deposit payments are non-refundable)
- 1 April 2024 – Remaining Balance Due
Payment instructions will be provided to participants upon notification of acceptance, on or after 11 January 2024.
Mortenson Center Associates Program Funding: Description and Application Guidelines
Funding for Program Participation
The Mortenson Center for International Library Programs is delighted to offer professional development funding to support 3 individuals who would otherwise be unable to participate in the Associates’ Program due to financial constraints. The three grants ($3,800 each) cover the $4,000 program fee minus the deposit ($200). The grant recipient will be responsible for paying all other associated costs (e.g., airfare, visa fees, meals and other personal costs). Applications for funding are welcomed from library and information science (LIS) professionals who are residents of under-represented countries and/or from low-and middle-income countries and/or members of historically underrepresented and marginalized communities from countries outside of the United States.
To determine your eligibility, please review the specific requirements outlined below and complete the form. All sections of the application form should be completed and submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org by the deadline of 8 December 2023.
- Admission to the 2024 Mortenson Center Associates Program.
- Demonstrated financial need.
- Ability to pay all other associated costs (airfare, visa fees, meals and other personal costs.
- Commitment to learning, applying and sharing their new knowledge and skills to enhance their institutions, the LIS field, and/or professional practice.
- Demonstrated and/or potential leadership and innovation in their workplace and/or the LIS field in their local context.
- Professional readiness, work ethic and promise based on 2 reference letters (one from supervisor, library director or mentor- with Program application, and a second one for the grant application).
- Confirmation of a completed 2024 Mortenson Center Associates Program application.
- Confirmation of ability to pay all other associated costs with attending the Associates Program (e.g., airfare, visa fees, meals and other personal costs).
- Letter of reference speaking to the applicant’s professional readiness, work ethic and promise, and the relevance of the Associates Program to their career development.
- Statement of purpose (max. 500 words) addressing criteria 2 and 5 above.
All materials must be submitted to the Mortenson Center by 8 December 2023. Selection decisions are final. Selected scholarship recipients will be notified by 11 January 2024.
Download Application Form HERE:
Grant for professionals working in the Arab World
Application deadline for the 2024 Naseej Academy Grant: 30 November 2023
The Naseej Academy Grant to Attend the Mortenson Center Associates Program was developed to support the region’s knowledge community by sponsoring a professional working in the field of libraries, information centers and archival institutions in the Arab World, to attend the Mortenson Center Associates Program.
The Mortenson Center has engaged in this grant program from its inception in 2017. Read more about the Grant and past recipients by clicking here.
Where can I access the 2024 Mortenson Center Associates program application form?
Application forms for the 2024 Mortenson Center program can be downloaded here
Am I eligible to apply?
The Mortenson Center Associates Program is a program for individuals working in a library and/or information services setting outside the United States.
What visa category should I be applying for if I want to attend the Mortenson Center Associates program?
B1/B2 visa is the recommended visa to apply for.
Do I have to ask my direct supervisor to write my letter of recommendation?
It is recommended that you talk to your supervisor regarding your application as they need to support your attendance and feedback to colleagues after returning from the Mortenson Center Associates Program. However, recommendation letters can also come from a library director or a mentor.
I have a colleague who is my mentor in the organization, can I ask them to write my letter of recommendation?
Yes, recommendation letters from a range of people who are interested in your professional journey is great.
How long does the Mortenson Center Associates program take?
The 2024 Mortenson Center Associates program lasts for 3.5 weeks. The 2024 Associates Program will take place 3 June – 26 June.
Is the ALA (American Library Association) conference attendance included in the Associates program?
No, the conference attendance is optional. However, Associates are welcome to attend if they wish, our program is organized to allow delegates time to attend the ALA conference.
What does the Associates program include?
In the 3.5 weeks, the program offers an opportunity for librarians and information specialists to learn first-hand the workings of U.S. libraries. You will be learning as a cohort of international library and information innovative leaders. The program includes:
- Seminars and Workshops which provide an overview of current trends in the field. Library experts will be invited to share their perspectives, offer expertise, and foster conversations on the themes of communication and leadership.
- Tours of a variety of libraries, including academic, public, and school libraries. We may also visit the American Library Association headquarters in Chicago, Illinois, and other sites of interest.
- Networking with a dynamic group of international colleagues during and post-program.
- Participants will develop individual action plans appropriate to their professional and institutional needs and will receive post-program implementation review.
Are meals provided as part of the program?
A few meals are provided in the program, so participants are required to set aside approximately $1,000 for meals and other personal expenses during the duration of the program.
What is the cost of the program and when is payment due?
The total cost for the program is $4,000 USD. This fee covers: Accommodations, Transportation for field visits, Programming costs, Speaker fees, Medical Insurance and Other materials and logistics. Applicants are encouraged to set aside an additional $3,000 to cater for airfare, visa application and out of pocket expenses mentioned above. The deadlines for fee payment are as follows:
15 February 2024– Deposit-$200 non-refundable fee, Placeholder fee. Upon request, a deposit may be rolled over to the next year
1 April 2024– $3,800- Remaining balance due
Early preparation of funds recommended
Payment Methods: Wire transfer (https://www.flywire.com/pay/Mortenson) or Credit card payment (transaction fees are paid by applicant)
Are there funding opportunities provided for the Mortenson Center Associates program attendance?
The Mortenson Center will provide 3 scholarships of $3,800 each to cover program fees to support participation in the 2024 Associates Program. Please see tab above on Funding opportunity. Other funding opportunities include the Naseej Academy Grant which was developed to support participants from the Arabian Gulf Region.
Is accommodation provided as part of the program?
The program provides on-campus student residential housing. These are shared suites with common areas (single room accommodation may also be available). There is easy access to local shops, restaurants, libraries and other campus buildings by walking or bus.
If I’m not selected this year, may I reapply?
You are welcome to reapply for the program but please contact us if you are not able to attend after being accepted.
Can I contact the Center if I need help about the Associates program?
Yes you may contact the center for any further inquiries or questions about the program at: Mortenson@illinois.edu.
Curious about what it’s like to be an Associate? Explore below!