The North Carolina Central University (NCCU) School of Library and Information Sciences and Princeton University Library (PUL) are coming together to offer a multi-year fellowship program for individuals aspiring for careers in library and information science.
Students who earn a master’s degree in information science or library science at NCCU are now eligible for PUL’s Early Career Fellowship Program. With the fellowship program, Princeton University Library will help to increase minority representation to further assist with developing a more diverse field of top-quality professionals including graduates of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).
“I am very excited about the Early Career Fellowship Program. In partnership with the Princeton University Library, NCCU will offer opportunities for library and information science graduates to earn valuable knowledge during a comprehensive two-year fellowship that will be an excellent career opportunity in academic librarianship,” said Jon Gant, Ph.D., dean of the NCCU School of Library and Information Sciences. “Participants will gain extensive knowledge including the core components of the library experience coupled with technical experience working with teams that manage the digital infrastructure and advanced cataloging systems of one of the nation’s top libraries.”
According to recent U.S. Census data, over 86% of librarians identified as white. Only 7% identified as Black or African American.
The program will offer a total of eight, two-year long positions over the next four years. The first two fellows will begin in summer 2022. Princeton University Library staff members are leading the coordination of the fellowship program.
“This partnership with NCCU is an investment in improving equity and inclusion in the library science profession,” said Jon Stroop, deputy university librarian for the Princeton University Library. “As library practices and technologies are updated to better reflect the wealth of perspectives in our collections and services, recognizing the valuable contributions of HBCUs as organizations of cultural preservation and activism is vital. These cohorts of HBCU graduates will bring relevant and critical perceptions and perspectives to Princeton University Library as we do our part to help them launch their careers.”
Recent graduates will receive industry-ready training to position them for careers in library and information science. Individuals will also be paired with professionals to receive hands-on training and professional mentorship. Fellowships include positions within the operations or cataloging areas of the library.
The initiative provides individuals the opportunity to encode languages to write programs that aid in automation. Fellows will also work in software configuration management and deployment to build and maintain PUL’s infrastructure.
Scholars will also have the opportunity to review copy and derive cataloging of monographic material including collaborative projects within PUL and participation in external committees and working groups related to cataloging and metadata.
These are salaried positions; relocation and professional development expenses are covered.
To be selected for the program, individuals must have earned a master's degree in information science or library science from NCCU in 2020, 2021 or 2022.