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news & notes: february 2019

iSchool at Illinois MS/LIS program granted continued ALA accreditation status

The Committee on Accreditation (COA) of the American Library Association (ALA) has granted continued accreditation status through 2025 to the iSchool's MS in Library and Information Science program. The decision was based on the "totality of the accomplishment and the environment for learning" of the program. Read more.

Get to Know: Paolo P. Gujilde (MS ’09), collections & scholarly communications librarian

As the current president of the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), Paolo P. Gujilde aims to streamline the organization's workflow and processes, increase membership, and provide more opportunities for members to be involved. He credits the continued support from APALA members for making a very busy year a wonderful one as well. Read more.

iSchool alumni selected for PLA Leadership Academy

Midori Clark (MS '17), director of community relations, development & strategic initiatives for the Pueblo (CO) City-County Library District; Amita Lonial (MS '09), assistant director of the Tacoma (WA) Public Library; and Nataliya Papushina (MS '15), branch supervisor for the Indian Trails Public Library District in Wheeling (IL), are among the twenty-eight public librarians selected to participate in the Spring 2019 PLA Leadership Academy, which will be held March 25-29 in Chicago. Read more.

Save the date: Alumni events in Arizona

Tucson Alumni Luncheon hosted by Diana Stroud and Jill Gengler.
Join us at FEAST, on Friday, March 1, from 11:30 a.m-1:00 p.m., at 3719 E. Speedway in Tucson to hear about the With Illinois Campaign, share your stories, hear about the latest developments at the iSchool and make some great, local connections! RSVP to

Alumni brunch hosted at the home of Dr. Michèle Cloonan and Dr. Sid Berger.
Sid and Michèle are both Illinois iSchool alumni who have recently moved to Scottsdale. Michèle is retired as the Dean of the Library School at Simmons and recent author of the “Monumental Challenge of Preservation: The Past in a Volatile World.” Sid has taught courses on rare books, book history, and special collections. Many of you may have had Sid as a faculty member. They know almost all there is to know about paper, printing, and conservation. 

Join Michèle, Sid, Diana Stroud, and Jill Gengler to connect with other Arizona-area alumni, hear updates about the iSchool, and enjoy a delightful brunch on Saturday, March 2, from 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. RSVP to to receive details on the location.

Field trip and reception in St. Louis

Explore St. Louis with the iSchool! Come along for a field trip to the St. Louis Botanical Garden, followed by a student and alumni reception at the Schlafly Taproom on Friday, February 15. St. Louis alumni are encouraged to join us. Champaign-Urbana area students and alumni are welcome to register for the bus to and from St. Louis for a $25 nonrefundable fee.

iSchool Networking & Career Fair

The second annual iSchool Networking & Career Fair will be held at Loyola University’s Cudahy Library on March 8 from 2:00-4:30 p.m. Whether your organization is hiring now or in the future, it is a great opportunity to build your brand with students and encourage them to apply. Along with the top LIS talent in the nation, we have data scientists, business intelligence consultants, IT specialists, and UX researchers. A networking reception will be held after the fair from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Participants must register through Handshake.

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!

Advancement experience humbling, empowering for master’s student

As the graduate assistant for the iSchool's Office of Advancement, Joanna Pike has learned technical skills, such as finding her way around the University's complex alumni database, but perhaps more importantly, she has gained a new perspective on the importance of giving.

"This position has been incredibly humbling for me," Pike said. "This place, this wonderful School, doesn't just magically function."

She credits the Annual Fund for supporting events that enrich the student experience and provide necessary technology within the School, and she is thankful for her assistantship. 

Pike has enjoyed getting to know iSchool alumni through her work in advancement. She has been touched by their willingness to give back.

Learn more about the campaign and the iSchool’s priorities.

student life
Internship Spotlight: Federal Reserve Board

MS/LIS student Brianna Collins completed her internship in the research library at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. In addition to gaining practical and technical skills, she learned how to perform in a highly professional environment that deals with highly confidential material. Read more

Gabb defends dissertation

Doctoral candidate Henry A. Gabb successfully defended his dissertation, "An Informatics Approach to Prioritizing Risk Assessment for Chemicals and Chemical Combinations Based on Near-Field Exposure from Consumer Products," on January 14. Read more.


around the School
iSchool offers first Midwinter Getaway for school and youth services librarians

School and youth services librarians will not have to wait until the next Summer Getaway for professional development. The iSchool's Midwinter Getaway, which will be held February 16-17 on the Urbana campus, is open to all information professionals serving youth and builds on the success of the annual Summer Getaway. Read more.

Baby Monkey, Private Eye receives Gryphon Award

Baby Monkey, Private Eye written by Brian Selznick and David Serlin and illustrated by Brian Selznick (Scholastic Press, 2018), is the winner of the 2019 Gryphon Award for Children’s Literature. The Gryphon Award, which includes a $1,000 prize, is given annually by the iSchool's Center for Children's Books. Read more.

Talbott joins iSchool as academic advisor

Katelyn Talbott joined the iSchool on January 14 as an academic advisor. In this role, she primarily advises MS/LIS students, but she also works with MS/IM students during peak advising times. Talbott previously served as an academic advisor for undergraduates in the Division of General Studies at Illinois. The opportunity to work with graduate students attracted her to the advising position at the iSchool. Read more.

faculty news
Stodden elected Member-at-Large for AAAS section

Associate Professor Victoria Stodden has been elected Member-at-Large for the Statistics section of The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). As a Member-at-Large, Stodden will support the section's steering group in its responsibilities, which include nominating and reviewing Fellows as well as proposing and reviewing symposia for the AAAS Annual Meeting. Read more

Underwood authors new book on literary history

Professor Ted Underwood has authored a new book about recent discoveries in literary history and the changes that made those discoveries possible. His book, Distant Horizons: Digital Evidence and Literary Change, will be published by The University of Chicago Press Books in March and is available for pre-order. Read more.

Wilkin wins 2019 Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award

iSchool Affiliate Professor John Price Wilkin, Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Dean of Libraries and University Librarian, has been named the 2019 winner of the Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award. Wilkin will receive a cash award and citation during an ALCTS event at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC. Read more.

Chu named 2019 EMIERT Distinguished Librarian

Affiliate Professor Clara Chu, director of the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs, is the recipient of the 2019 American Library Association Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT) Distinguished Librarian Award. The award recognizes significant accomplishments in library services that are national or international in scope and include improving, spreading, and promoting multicultural librarianship. Read more.


Visit our newsroom page to see all the latest School news.

class notes
 Submit your own class note.

Adriana Cuervo (MS '05) will become the inaugural head of Archival Collections and Services at Rutgers–Newark. In this position, she will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Institute of Jazz Studies—the largest and most comprehensive jazz research facility in the world, located in the John Cotton Dana Library—as well as the newly established Dana Archives, documenting the history of Rutgers–Newark as an anchor institution in its host city. In addition to having oversight of all archival personnel, she will identify opportunities for fund development and gift acquisitions and develop programming that heightens the visibility and use of these collections. 

Nicole Helregel (MS '13, CAS '15) accepted the position of student success librarian at Purchase College (SUNY).

Jesse Lambertson (MS '12) helped form the Special Libraries Association's Diversity, Inclusion, Community, Equity Caucus (DICE) in 2018 and has helped lead the caucus since its formation. DICE provides a forum for promoting diversity and inclusion within SLA and encouraging discussion around related issues, such as intersectionality, privilege, and gender roles.

Allen Merry (MS '92) received the 2018 AFSCME District Council 47 "Union Member of the Year Award" in December in recognition of his advocacy for Free Library of Philadelphia employees in his role as chief steward of Local 2186.

Thomas Padilla (MS '14), currently visiting digital research services librarian at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, will join OCLC Research as practitioner researcher-in-residence. In this six-month position, he will investigate and facilitate OCLC's engagement with the library data science community and will help inform OCLC's research agenda.

William Pooler (MS '15) returned to his home state of Maine as a lecturer in the John Mitchell Center for Science, Technology, and Health at the University Of Southern Maine.

Cameron Riesenberger (MS '16) has been selected to serve on the committee for the 2020 Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature.

Amanda E. Standerfer (MS '99) is now the director of development and promotion for The Urbana Free Library after working in the philanthropic sector since 2013. She also continues her library consulting work through Fast Forward Libraries, specializing in strategic planning, fundraising, and coaching.

Jon Sweitzer-Lamme (MS '17) participated in the 2018 inaugural residency program at the Library of Congress. The program, which ran from June to December 2018, gave five early-career librarians the opportunity to gain meaningful work experience and receive mentoring from seasoned staff at the Library.


Visit our class notes page to see more.

upcoming events

Midwinter Getaway: Professional Learning for Librarians Serving Youth
February 16-17
On campus

Pre-Sale: The Center for Children's Book's 18th Annual Book Sale
February 17, 1:00-4:00 p.m.
Pre-sale tickets will be on sale Monday, January 28 - Monday, February 11
On campus

The Center for Children's Books 18th Annual Book Sale
February 18-20, 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. daily
On campus

Welcome Weekend
February 22-24
On campus

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

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

iSchool Networking & Career Fair in Chicago
March 8, 2:00-4:30 p.m.
Loyola Cudahy Library
1032 W Sheridan Rd., Chicago, IL 60660

iSchool Networking & Career Fair in Chicago: Alumni Mixer
March 8, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
4th Floor, Loyola Information Commons
6501 N Kenmore Ave, Chicago, IL 60660

2019 Gryphon Lecture
March 8, 7:00-8:00 p.m.
"Taking a Teen-Centric Approach to Adolescent Online Safety"
Presented by Pamela Wisniewski, University of Central Florida
On campus

MS/IM Virtual Information Session
April 3, 7:00-8:00 p.m.

MS/LIS Virtual Information Session
April 4, 7:00-8:00 p.m.

iSchool Master's Student Showcase
April 5, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
On campus

iSchool Convocation Ceremony
May 12, 4:30-6:00 p.m.
Foellinger Auditorium
On campus & online