In a time where our world is changing so fast and information is overwhelmingly abundant, children and young adult librarians can help young people learn to navigate, understand, and take positive action in the world around them. The UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) Children and Young Adult Library services program has a long and distinguished history of preparing graduates to serve and advocate for these unique library patrons, and we continue to build on this strong tradition. The most recent U.S. News and World Report graduate program review ranked SILS at #3 in the nation overall and #3 in the Services for Children and Youth specialty area.  

In your future career, would you like to:

  • Work with children and young adults
  • Reach out to diverse communities
  • Share your love of books
  • Keep up with the latest technology
  • Develop leadership, organizational, and decision-making skills
  • Use your dramatic and artistic talents
  • Bring positive change to individuals, families, schools, and neighborhoods
    (List courtesy of the American Library Association)

SILS can help you channel your dedication and ambition into a meaningful career. Guided by a comprehensive knowledge and applied understanding of theory, practice, and emerging trends in librarianship, you can become a leader in the field of children and young adult library services and play an influential role in the shaping of 21st century libraries.

Specialization in Children and Youth Services course grid

    At SILS, you will find:
    • Intellectually rigorous coursework, emphasizing children and young adult literature, reference services, collection development, library management, technology integration, and leadership.
    • Instruction in emerging technologies used in today's libraries.
    • Exceptional faculty, including Dr. Brian Sturm and Dr. Sandra Hughes-Hassell.
    • A dedicated community of peers.
    • Practicum opportunities serving children and young adults in urban and rural public library settings.
    • Personalized mentorship by professionals in the field of children and youth services and by SILS faculty.

    Special Opportunities and Initiatives at SILS

    State and National Organizations

    ALSC - Association for Library Services for Children

    International Children’s Digital Library - Multicultural digital library of outstanding children’s books

    LearnNC - Resources for K-12 teachers and media specialists from UNC School of Education

    NCLA Youth Services - North Carolina Library Association—Youth Services

    NC WISEOWL - Website that has, as its centerpiece, several subscription databases of reference sources for K-12 students.

    National Storytelling Network

    North Carolina Storytelling Guild

    We Need Diverse Books

    YALSA - Young Adult Library Services Association

    Contact Information

    Dr. Brian Sturm
    The School of Information & Library Science
    The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    CB#3360, 100 Manning Hall
    Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3360
    (919) 962-2460
    fax (919) 962-8071
    sturm@ils.unc.edu