SILS Students Receive Baker & Taylor Scholarships for Summer Seminars to London and Prague

April 23, 2014

Summer will be an adventure in Europe for two graduate students from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Information and Library Science (SILS).  Meredith Hale and Julie Stivers have been selected as winners of the 2014 Baker & Taylor Scholarships for summer seminars in Europe. The awards cover program registration fees, hotel, the fee for academic credit and an $850 stipend.

Julie StiversStivers will travel to London to participate in a seminar titled “British Libraries and Librarianship: Past, Present and Future.”  In addition to attending the seminar in Bloomsbury during her two weeks abroad, she will have the opportunity to visit the university libraries at Oxford and Cambridge. There will also be tours of the British Library, the National Archives, the Imperial War Museum, Wellcome Library and the University College London. Experts in the field of librarianship in Great Britain are scheduled to make presentations, and the weekend will be free for students to tour Europe on their own.

“I will both actively seek out experiences and then commit to using my gained knowledge with my future students, working towards the worthy goals of fostering information literacy, global awareness and a love of literature,” said Stivers.

Hale will be traveling to Prague, the heart of the Czech Republic. This seminar is titled “Libraries and Librarianship in the Czech Republic” and will also take place over the course of two weeks. This seminar is organized in conjunction with Charles University, the oldest university in central Europe.

In addition to attending presentations, participants of the Prague program will enjoy a walking tour of the Old Town, Charles Bridge and Wenceslas Square; a bus tour of historic Prague, including Mala Strana, Nove Mesto, Prague Castle, St. Vitus Cathedral and the Jewish Quarter; visits to the Klementinum (National Library), the town of Kromeriz to see a castle library, the Parliament Library, and Strahov Monastery and its libraries. Finally, there will be free time allotted for participants to explore the Czech Republic independently.

Meredith Hale“The Prague summer seminar has the potential to greatly affect my educational and professional career by giving me the opportunity to study art firsthand and observe how the Czech language and culture alters library organization and management,” said Hale.

"I'm so excited to be going to Prague with the SILS community and am very grateful to Baker & Taylor for their support of the program," she added.
"Studying in Prague will give me the chance to use my Czech language skills firsthand, observe how language and culture affect librarianship, and learn more about Eastern European art and architecture. I'm especially looking forward to seeing Alphonse Mucha's Slav Epic paintings in person for the first time, yet I'm certain that this will be just one of many highlights."

The opportunities provided by the programs in London and Prague are made possible to Hale and Stivers through scholarships provided by Baker & Taylor. Baker & Taylor is a leading worldwide distributor of books, video, music and games.

All participants in the London and Prague programs have the opportunity to receive three hours of graduate credit from SILS. Both programs will take place May 18th through May 31st, 2014.

SILS offers the summer seminars in London and Prague to all who would like to learn more about libraries in these cities, but especially are focused on practicing library professionals and students from any LIS school. The seminars provide attendees a chance to explore the cultural heritage of two of Europe's most vibrant, historic and culturally rich cities.  Graduate students attending an LIS school can take these seminars for credit.

For more information about the summer seminars to London and Prague, go to: