As he works toward his PhD in information sciences, William Langston is receiving financial support through the Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois Program (DFI). The program provides competitive need-based financial awards to underrepresented students in the state of Illinois who are interested in becoming full-time tenure-track faculty and staff at colleges and universities in Illinois.
"I applied for the program because I recognize the value in diversifying a strong pool of candidates for faculty positions in higher education," said Langston, whose professional experience includes serving as an academic librarian at three universities. "Operating in an interdisciplinary field such as LIS, you get a chance to work across the table with faculty and staff in STEM, humanities, community outreach, and special initiatives and parts of administration. The need to diversify these interactions and the parties in-between is essential toward developing stronger relations with students and future colleagues."
Langston earned his MS/LIS from the iSchool, MBA and MPA from Keller Graduate School of Management, and BA in corporate communication from Northern Illinois University. His research focuses on workforce development and tech talent. Langston is also interested in urban planning and would relish the opportunity to hold a position at the Obama Foundation in the future.
"While working at a city-wide initiative like the Obama Foundation is a goal, I recognize that my strengths and interests occur in the nontraditional classroom," he said. "I like to engage minds that dare to collaborate and experiment, and I know how my value can translate to the classroom environment."
William Langston shares his research focus and career goals and offers advice to prospective PhD students.