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Community Data Clinic receives Broadband READY grant

The Community Data Clinic, a mixed methods data studies and interdisciplinary community research lab led by Associate Professor Anita Say Chan, has received a $50,000 grant to address gaps in household access to computing devices, hotspot connectivity, and digital literacy skills in East Central Illinois. The grant is part of the state's Broadband Regional Engagement for Adoption and Digital Equity (READY) program, which is operated through the governor's office and Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. The Community Data Clinic at the University of Illinois is one of only four sites that are partnering with the state on this effort.

Anita Say Chan

Eight iSchool students named 2021-2022 ALA Spectrum Scholars

Eight iSchool master's students have been named 2021-2022 Spectrum Scholars by the American Library Association (ALA) Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services. Since 1997, the Spectrum Scholarship Program has promoted diversity among graduate-level students pursuing degrees in library and information studies through ALA-accredited programs.

Digital exhibit celebrates 75 years of the CCB

In celebration of its 75th anniversary, the Center for Children's Books (CCB) has published a digital exhibit highlighting defining moments from its past.

"The history of the Center for Children's Books provides an excellent window into the history and evaluation of U.S. children's books more broadly—and for a period when both the quality and quantity of youth literature published increased tremendously," said CCB Director and Professor Sara L. Schwebel, who worked with a team of graduate assistants to design and publish the multimedia site.

CCB 75th anniversary timeline

Kilicoglu contributes to more transparent medical research publications

Peer review is a valuable component in the research process, but it also lengthens the time to publish research. The need to rapidly communicate scientific findings has been especially apparent during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to an increase in the number of publications disseminated via preprint servers. With the lack of traditional peer review, the quality of these publications can be questionable. Associate Professor Halil Kilicoglu and the Automated Screening Working Group are working to assess COVID-19 preprints for rigor and transparency in their reporting.

Halil Kilicoglu

Get to know Megan Okesson, MS/LIS student

When she is not working as a library assistant at Clive (IA) Public Library or taking care of her large family (four boys!), Megan Okesson is pursuing her MS/LIS degree through the iSchool's Leep (online) program. After graduation, she would like to work as a public or academic librarian but would also be thrilled to receive a job offer from the Library of Congress.

Megan Okesson

Worthey awarded grant through new NEH-UK joint digital scholarship program

Glen Worthey, associate director for research support services at the HathiTrust Research Center, is among the first recipients of new grant funding to advance digital scholarship in cultural institutions, through a joint initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the United Kingdom's Arts and Humanities Research Council. Worthey is the project director of "AEOLIAN (Artificial intelligence for cultural organizations)," a collaboration with Loughborough University in the U.K. The project will bring together a team of experts to develop and examine new approaches–particularly artificial intelligence and machine learning–for improving access to and use of digital collections that are currently restricted due to privacy concerns or copyright protection. 

Glen Worthey

Informatics student awarded Fulbright grant

Jade Roberts, of Woodridge, Illinois, was awarded the inaugural Fulbright-Aalto University Graduate Award to complete a master's degree at Aalto University in Finland. Roberts earned a bachelor's degree in May from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences with a major in individual plans of study and a minor in informatics. She focused her self-designed major at the intersection of artificial intelligence and linguistics, conducting research on auditory and cognitive neuroscience. At Aalto, Roberts plans to explore the root of biased technology and artificial intelligence algorithms through a master's degree in acoustics and audio technology.

Jade Roberts

Diesner partners on project to study impact of scientific research on society

A team including Associate Professor Jana Diesner has received a $1 million, three-year grant from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (Germany) for their project, "TextTransfer: Assessing Impact Patterns in Research Texts Applying Corpus Driven Methods." The collaborative project is a continuation of the previously funded "Text Transfer" pilot project, in which Diesner and colleagues used a mixed methods approach to build taxonomies and prediction models for secondary practical uses of research findings from final reports of grant-funded work. Their methods included interviews, information extraction, natural language processing, and machine learning.

Assistant Professor Jana Diesner

Dahlen to join iSchool faculty

The iSchool is pleased to announce that Sarah Park Dahlen (MS/LIS '09, PhD '09) will join the faculty as an associate professor in August 2021, pending approval by the University of Illinois Board of Trustees. A nationally recognized scholar in children's literature, Dahlen is currently an associate professor of library and information science at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Sarah Park Dahlen

iSchool alumna at helm of new library in Montana

According to Honore Bray (MS/LIS ’05), being director of the Missoula Public Library is "the best job ever." While this, of course, is debatable, Bray certainly has one of the best locations to do her job—a beautiful new library building in Missoula, Montana. The project took six years from start to finish, with Bray serving as part of the planning process, co-project manager, and liaison between the library’s trustees and the architects and construction team.

Honore Bray