Academics and Research / Magazine Feature

Library science program receives $917,000 grant

DU’s Library and Information Science (LIS) Program in the Morgridge College of Education has received a $917,891 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program to support 10 students earning master’s degrees in librarianship. All of the students will specialize in early childhood literacy.

The project will prepare librarians qualified to work with very young children in achieving early literacy.

“The community need addressed by this project is the demand for more public librarians to help very young children acquire early literacy skills,” says Mary Stansbury, director of the LIS Program. “The primary goal is to increase the number of librarians with specialized degrees who can serve the early literacy needs of very young children, caregivers, families, educators and community coalitions in Colorado.”

As a part of their training, the LIS students will gain practical experience through placement in public libraries and preschools. They also will be required to take coursework in various aspects of child psychology and to demonstrate Spanish-language proficiency. Project staff also will develop guidelines and training materials to help public libraries and preschools establish early childhood literacy programs.

DU is among 33 institutions who received grants. Since its inception in 2002, the program has provided $20.4 million to fund education and training of 3,220 master’s students, 186 doctoral students, 1,256 pre-professionals and 26,206 continuing education students.

DU’s LIS Program will partner with the Arapahoe Library District, the Colorado State Library, Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy, Douglas County Libraries, Clayton Early Learning Institute, Denver Preschool Program, Family Educational Network of Weld County and DU’s Child Family & School Psychology Program and Fisher Early Learning Center.

This is the second grant DU has received a grant from the program. In 2008, nearly $1 million was awarded to recruit and educate 10 new law librarians.

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