2011 August Newsletter

Mortenson Associates Program

“Librarians of Tomorrow:  Communication and Leadership” was the 2011 Mortenson Associates program that was held May 30 to June 22.  Twelve librarians from Bulgaria, China, Egypt, Ghana, Italy, Japan, Korea, Nigeria, and Uganda participated in the program.  Special thanks to Debra Bade, Ashley Booth, Greta Bever, Alice Cisna, Michael Dowling, Meg Edwards, Roxanne Frey, Amy George,  Jeanne Hamilton, Jan Ison, Paula Kaufmann, Allen Lanham, Lori Mestre, Heather Murphy, Susan Singleton, Shirley Stelbrink, Carol Torrens, John Unsworth, Sohair Wastawy, and Martin Wolske who provided educational sessions.  Katherine Eriksen and Jamie Luedtke organized and assisted with the training and saw to all the details that made the program a success.  Visits to Eastern Illinois University, Charleston Carnegie Public Library, Arthur Public Library, Illinois State University, Bloomington Public Library, OCLC, Ohio State University, Westerville Public Library, Chicago Public Library, American Library Association, Chicago Tribune, and the News Gazette added a great deal to the program.

Carnegie and MacArthur Africa Grants

Librarians from Ghana and Uganda participated in the Associates program.  Barbara Ford, Sarah Shreeves and Merinda Hensley traveled to the University of Ghana-Legon in July where training sessions were held on institutional repositories, subject librarians, and outreach to users.  Susan Schnuer will travel to Nigeria in October to continue working with the universities there.  These grants will end in 2012 and as a result university libraries with automated systems and improved services for users will be available at universities in Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda.

The next group of Mortenson Center visitors will arrive in spring 2012 as part of a Carnegie grant to improve library support for researchers in South African university libraries.

IMLS China Grant

The Center continues to work with Shuyong Jiang and Karen Wei on the IMLS Grant with Chinese public libraries. A group of 9 Chinese librarians were in Illinois in June for a training program that focused on library education.  Thanks to Laura Barnes, Robert Burger, Alice Cisna, Jenny Emanuel, Marsha Grove, Paula Kaufman, Debra Lissak, Rae-Anne Montague, Scott Walter, and Joyce Wright for sharing their ideas with the group.  The Mortenson Center organized the program for the Champaign-Urbana portion of the visit. The visiting librarians then went to Chicago where they visited the Chicago Public Library, American Library Association, Medical Library Association, and the Association of Library and Information Science Education and to public libraries around the country and the American Library Association conference.

In October another group of U.S. librarians including Barbara Ford, Shuyong Jiang, and Paula Kaufman will travel to China to present educational sessions.  Work continues on the web portal of Chinese materials for U.S. users.

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Contract

The Center is working with the Foundation to support training programs for public librarians in Latvia and Romania.  Librarians from both countries have been to the Mortenson Center for training.  In May Susan visited Latvia to follow-up on project work with public librarians who were at the Center in fall 2010.  In November Mortenson staff will visit Romania and Latvia to continue working with them on projects they started at the Mortenson Center.  In September Susan will participate in the Peer Learning Meeting in Seattle for the Gates Foundation.


Congratulations to graduate assistant Jamie Luedtke who is completing her degree and moving on to new opportunities.  Also to Katherine Eriksen who is leaving the Center to be Assistant Director in the Graduate College Career Services Office here at the University of Illinois.  Coral Daube left the Center in May and Amanda Sadler is now working at the Center until we hire a replacement.

Additional Information

Please contact Barbara J. Ford ( bjford@illinois.edu ) or Susan Schnuer ( schnuer@illinois.edu ) for additional information.