ARSL Leadership Institute Applications Are Now Open!

From ARSL:

We are excited to announce that applications for ARSL’s pilot leadership institute, Outstanding In Their Field, are officially open! We are looking for 30 outstanding people who are currently working in rural and small libraries to join us for this special professional development opportunity.

Applications will be accepted through February 24th, 2021.

Participants, a.k.a. “Outfielders,” will undertake 18 months of online and in-person interactive sessions.

It’s a BIG commitment, and rewarding! Participants will gain:

  • skills and confidence as leaders
  • a network of colleagues throughout the country
  • experiences at two ARSL conferences

The ARSL Leadership Institute is for accidental library leaders: people who may not have a Masters in Library and Information Science and maybe not even a college degree. They work in a small and/or rural library who are now are ready to grow as leaders. These folks came into the library from various jobs: the cashier at the local Mini-Mart with good customer service skills, the cataloger who worked at the library for 12 years and just became the new library director, or the schoolteacher who ends up running the public library.

They already are informal leaders and are ready for change.

If they don’t find a way to step up as leaders, they may leave libraries. We want to catch them and help them find new ways to be outstanding in the field!

All participant travel, materials, and instructional expenses (worth approximately $8000) are covered by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) . So while there are no monetary costs for participants, they will outlay their time, consistent engagement, and dedication to growing themselves and others as leaders. The Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) seeks applicants representing a wide variety of communities and has a commitment to the representation of groups that have been historically marginalized or excluded due to ethnicity, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, ability, economic background, educational attainment, and age.

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