Now that Graduation is almost here, many of us are in the midst of searching for jobs. Members of the ALA Student Chapter have been talking to our fellow students and some current librarians and archivists to get some tips about how to make the process easier. We’ve collected their advice on our website, at:
Probing Free Speech and National Security, in Dramatic Fashion February 8, 2008
In June 1971, the New York Times began publishing sections of the classified Pentagon Papers, which detailed the events surrounding the United States’ entry into the Vietnam War. When a court-ordered injunction prevented the Times from continuing to publish them, the Washington Post picked up where they left off. Top Secret tells the story of the Post’s decision to publish and the resulting court battles, which ended with a Supreme Court decision affirming their right under the First Amendment to publish the material.
The company, which specializes in audio theater, staged the production as a live radio play, with the actors mainly standing at a row of microphones, and a table toward the back of the stage where a sound-effects person could be seen rustling papers, pouring water, or “typing.” However, the play was still mesmerizing–I was literally on the edge of my seat through the entire thing. Perhaps it was because much of the dialogue was taken from real transcripts of tape recordings and court proceedings, or perhaps because the themes of the play are still very relevant today, more than 30 years after the events took place.
The audience Thursday night was fortunate to have among its members four men who were key figures in the events depicted in the play: Ben Bradlee, executive editor of the Post at the time; George Wilson and Murray Marder, Post reporters; and Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the Pentagon Papers to the newspapers. After the performance, they joined the director and actors onstage to answer questions from the audience. Particularly interesting were Mr. Ellsberg’s comments about his decision to make the documents public. He said that at the time, he did not realize that the U.S. does not have an “Official Secrets Act” which would make it a crime to leak classified government information. Although he felt the Pentagon Papers contained information the public needed to know, he expected that he would be sent to prison for leaking them. However, though there are narrower laws which cover specific areas such as nuclear information, the U.S., unlike many countries, doesn’t have a broad law of this kind. Mr. Ellsberg warned, however, that a current bill in Congress seeks to change this. He believes that today it is more important than ever for people to be informed about these issues.
A second performance of Top Secret: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers will take place tonight, Jan. 8, at 8:00pm. For more information about the show see: http://claricesmithcenter.umd.edu/2007/c/performances/performance?rowid=5448
Student to Staff: ALA 2008 in Anaheim, CA January 7, 2008
Interested in attending ALA’s annual meeting in Anaheim this summer?
Our student chapter gets to select one member to participate in the 2008 Student to Staff program.
ALA will provide free conference registration, housing and a per diem in
exchange for a total of 20 hours of work (typically four hours per day)
during the conference. Transportation costs are NOT covered.
The student should be available to work on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, June 27-July 1, 2008. Students will receive a short questionnaire to help us match them with appropriate ALA staff. Based on their assignment, students may be expected to perform a range of duties from clerical, to sales, to use of computers.
To qualify, the student must be a personal member of ALA.
I worked with ALA’s Washington office over the summer as part of the Student to Staff program and really enjoyed the experience. My work involved attending the Washington Office legislative update session, helping to guide a tour of Capitol Hill and directing Library Day on the Hill participants to their representatives’ offices.
If you are interested in participating e-mail clisala.exec at gmail.com by Friday January 18th. We may have to come up with some sort of contest to pick our representative; once I know how many of you are interested we’ll go from there.
If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with me.
ALA Scholarships December 6, 2007
The American Library Association (ALA) is currently accepting applications for its scholarships via one convenient online application. Find complete information on ALA’s scholarship opportunities, and the link to the online application, at http://www.ala.org/scholarships. Applicants are encouraged to review the ALA scholarship information pages thoroughly, and identify all scholarships for which they are eligible before beginning their online application. Applications are being accepted for scholarships for the Fall 2008 Semester, the deadline to apply is March 1, 2008. Scholarship winners will be notified in June 2008 and announced at the ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, CA.
ALA is committed to promoting and advancing the librarian profession. To demonstrate this commitment, the ALA and its units provide more than $300,000 annually for study in a master’s degree in library and information studies from an ALA accredited program, or for a master’s degree in school library media program that meets the ALA curriculum guidelines for a National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) accredited unit.
See the ALA Office of Accreditation’s website for a list of ALA-Accredited programs:
See the American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) website for the list of Nationally Recognized NCATE-AASL Reviewed & Approved School Library Media Education Programs:
For more information, contact Kimberly Sanders, firstname.lastname@example.org, or 1-800-545-2433, ext. 4279
Career Center Conducting Mock Interview Clinic October 9, 2007
Tuesday, October 16th from 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM
University Career Center (3rd Floor of Hornbake)
University students and alumni are invited to fine tune their interview skills with real employers on Tuesday, October 16th from 11am-2pm at the University Career Center.
Check the Career Center website at www.careercenter.umd.edu for updates and changes.
Graduate Student Union Interest Meeting: Wed., Sept. 12th September 9, 2007
Maryland Teachers and Researchers, a group of graduate students, is working to form a union in order to advocate for better pay and working conditions. The group will be holding an interest meeting on Wednesday, September 12th at 5pm in the Jimenez room of the Stamp Student Union.
The group is demanding higher stipends, reasonable workloads and grievance procedure. More information can be found on the following page: http://www.mtrumd.org/
Thursdays = Free Coffee September 6, 2007
photo from yoppy on flickr
Free Coffee on Thrusdays for Grad Students:
Come by the Graduate Student Suite in 1121 Stamp Student Union for a free cup of coffee every Thursday, 10:00am-5:00pm, while classes are in session. Stop by anytime during the week to check out available resources, check your email, visit the Graduate Student Government offices, and meet the Graduate Student Life staff. Visit www.union.umd.edu/GSL/lounge for more information.