Initiative to Recruit a Diverse Workforce Call for Applications—Deadline May 13, 2015

by Mark A. Puente | 202-296-2296 | | on April 1, 2015

ARL (Association of Research Libraries) is accepting applications for the Initiative to Recruit a Diverse Workforce (IRDW), a program designed to recruit master of library and information science (MLIS) students from traditionally underrepresented ethnic and racial minority groups into careers in research libraries and archives.

The IRDW includes a stipend in support of MLIS education of up to $10,000 over two years, leadership and career development training, a site visit to the Michigan State University Libraries, financial support for skills development, and a formal mentorship program.

The IRDW is funded by ARL member libraries. This program reflects the commitment of ARL members to create a diverse research library workforce that will better meet the challenges of changing demographics in higher education and the emphasis of global perspectives in the academy.

Program Goal and Objectives

The ARL Initiative to Recruit a Diverse Workforce seeks to:

Attract MLIS students from underrepresented groups to careers in research libraries and archives

Strengthen participants’ leadership and job searching skills via a Leadership Symposium held during the American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting

Develop a network of peers and mentors who will guide and nurture the career development of the participants

Candidates from all academic disciplines are encouraged to apply.

Applicant Criteria

Successful applicants will meet the following criteria:

Identify as an underrepresented racial or ethnic minority, based on the categories outlined by the US Census Bureau or Statistics Canada
Be a citizen or permanent resident of the US, Canada, or Puerto Rico
Be accepted into an ALA-accredited MLIS program
Have a strong interest in pursuing a career in a research library or archive

To Apply:

All applicants are required to submit the following materials by 11:59 p.m. eastern daylight time on Wednesday, May 13, 2015:

Online application form
A 400-word (maximum) essay describing what attracts you to a career in a research library
Two letters of reference
Official undergraduate and graduate school transcripts including your last academic semester completed
Copy of an official letter of acceptance from an ALA-accredited library/information science program

For more information about the program, visit the Initiative to Recruit a Diverse Workforce (IRDW) website.

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 124 research libraries in the US and Canada. ARL’s mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, facilitating the emergence of new roles for research libraries, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is on the web at

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