The iSchool GSAC’s
January 2021 Newsletter

Volume 10, Issue 1

Greetings from the Graduate Student Advisory Council (GSAC)

It wasn’t easy, but we closed the book on 2020. I hope winter break is giving everyone a chance to reflect on accomplishments from this challenging year and recharge before Spring semester. 

While reading Vivek Murthy’s Together, I’ve been thinking about the importance of social connections. By experimenting with new ways of connecting people with similar interests, I hope GSAC can help make the iSchool experience more enjoyable. If you’re interested in learning more, I hope you’ll join us for our next meeting on Jan. 20th at 8pm (see below).

I’m excited to start a new chapter. Let’s make it a good one!

Lauren Zollinger
President, iSchool Graduate Student Advisory Council

Fall 2020 Virtual Yearbook

Congratulations to all iSchool students who completed the program last semester! To celebrate, GSAC and the ALA Student Chapter compiled this Virtual Yearbook. We wish all of you the very best in your next chapter. View the yearbook here.


The iSchool Graduate Student Advisory Council (GSAC) held elections during our December meeting, and we are pleased to introduce several new officers and representatives.

Olivia Wood, Vice President of Communications
My name is Olivia Wood and I am a second semester student focusing on archival and cultural heritage preservation studies. I currently reside in Mansfield, OH, although I hail from Lima, OH. I earned my BA in History with a minor in Education from Ohio State University in 2017. Currently, I am a member of the KSU ALA Student Chapter and the Ohio Library Council.

I am a full time MLIS student as of late and I intend to focus on cultivating meaningful relationships with my fellow peers. I was introduced to GSAC during my first semester and had the pleasure of meeting some amazing and talented people. While the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted my life in many ways, I’m spending my time focusing on my studies while dedicating myself to bettering the educational experience for every student. When I’m not working on extracurriculars or schoolwork, I enjoy spending time with my dog, Emmy, and my cat, Baz; I also love to read, write, paint, bake, and cook. I try to make time for the little things as often as I can. I hope to serve the GSAC with your best interests in mind and I am thankful for this incredible experience

Kathryn Taylor, Secretary
My name is Kathryn Taylor and I am beginning my third semester in the iSchool, pursuing the K-12 Library/Media Licensure. I went to Magnificat High School in Rocky River, graduated with my BS in Business Administration from The Ohio State University in 2004, and completed my initial teaching coursework at the University of Toledo.

I live in Cleveland with my partner Moe and our Boston Terrier Larry. During the day, I am a Title I Math teacher at Westpark Community Middle School, a charter school managed by Constellation Schools. I also enjoyed living and working in Keystone, Colorado in the hospitality industry, both in lodging and food service. These days have me reminiscing on some favorite childhood experiences including being slimed at Nickelodeon Studios, going to Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama, and being part of a sailing race team for Put-in-Bay Yacht Club. When the world opens back up I look forward to spending spare time with my many relatives, going to comedy shows, and traveling the world.

I am already grateful for the connections made through GSAC and look forward to serving as its secretary.

Jessica Black, UXD Representative
My name is Jessica Black and I am in my third semester of the User Experience Design (UXD) program. I have a particular interest in how user experience principles can be applied to the health care field. I believe there is a need for UX professionals to focus on solving design problems that threaten the safety of patients and health care providers. I am very passionate about my UXD coursework and I am proud to represent the interests of UXD students within GSAC.

I have a B.A. in Mass Communication with a concentration in digital advertising from Louisiana State University. I’m from Slidell, Louisiana, and live for crawfish season. When I have free time, you can find me meditating, journaling, listening to music, or spending time with friends and family.

Calendar of Upcoming Events

GSAC’s January General Meeting
January 20th at 8pm
Current and incoming iSchool students are invited to attend our general meeting to discuss upcoming plans and new ideas. Contact Lauren Zollinger (lzolling@kent.edu) for the Zoom link.

GSAC Meet & Greet
January 21st at 8pm
Grab a beverage and join us to welcome new students and get to know fellow classmates. Contact Natalie Groff (ngroff3@kent.edu) for the Zoom link.

Reinberger Children’s Library Center Mock Caldecott
January 22nd at 4pm 
The Reinberger Center is pleased to host the Seventh Annual Mock Caldecott Night. This free online workshop will offer an opportunity to discuss our collective selection of some of the top 2020 picture books and choose a winner and honor books for the Caldecott Awards. All are welcome to join us on what is sure to be an interesting and fun discussion. Register here.

ALA Midwinter Virtual
January 22-26; Registration closes January 15th
Registration for student ALA members is free this year! Register here. Not an ALA member? ALA offers a great membership deal in partnership with most state library associations for only $42, which you can sign up for here.

OhioNET: Fundamentals of Cataloging
Jan 26th, Feb 2nd, Feb 9th
This introductory series covers the basic cataloging concepts and processes for copy catalogers and demonstrates how to describe print resources. Register for the series here. Registration is free for current iSchool students. Simply select “Kent State University – iSchool” when registering.

Explore additional events on our website!

Scholarships & Fellowships

SAA Scholarships
Applications due February 28th
The Society of American Archivists is offering a number of student scholarship opportunities. Click here for more information on the scholarships available.

SAA Student Travel Award
Applications due February 28th
Nominations are now being accepted for the 2021 Donald Peterson Student Travel Award! This award supports students and recent graduates from graduate archival programs within North America to attend and participate in SAA’s Annual Meeting. Click here to learn more and/or to apply.

ALA Spectrum Scholarship
Applications due March 1st
The Spectrum Scholarship Program, administered by ODLOS, provides scholarships to American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, Middle Eastern and North African, and/or Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander students to assist them with obtaining a graduate degree and leadership positions within the profession and ALA. Click here for more information.

LRT Professional Development Scholarship 
Applications due by March 1st
The ALA Learning Round Table (LRT) will award up to $1,000 to an individual to participate in continuing education event(s) between September 1, 2021 and August 31, 2022. The award recipient will be required to share their new learning with other Round Table members in some way (newsletter, blog, listserve, etc.).  This opportunity is open to everyone! You don’t have to be an ALA member to apply. Click here for more information.

AALL George A. Strait Minority Scholarship & Fellowship
Applications due by May 1st
The American Association of Law Libraries is offering both scholarship and fellowship opportunities, which will be awarded to members of a minority group who are degree candidates in an accredited library or law school, and who intend to have a career in law librarianship. Click here for more information.

Find us on Facebook!

Current iSchool students are invited to join the iSchool GSAC’s new Facebook group to discuss experiences, seek and share advice related to the program, and learn about virtual and in-person opportunities for networking and professional development.

Other Ways to Connect:

There are many different ways to connect with the iSchool and your peers at Kent State:

Follow GSAC on our Facebook Group, LinkedInTwitter and website 
Follow the iSchool on Facebook and LinkedIn
Subscribe to the iSchool’s listServ
Follow the iSchool Alumni Network’s Facebook Page and Facebook Group
Follow the ALA Student Chapter on Facebook, Instagram, and their website

New on GSAC’s Blog

Alumni Spotlights
Interested in writing for GSAC’s blog? For more information or to share your ideas for future blog posts, please contact VP of Communications Olivia Wood at owood2@kent.edu

Interested in becoming a member of the Kent State ALA Student Chapter? Membership in the ALA Student Chapter is open to any current iSchool student at Kent State University. Though membership in the American Library Association is encouraged, it is not a requirement for a general member. There are no dues for the student chapter.

To learn more about the student chapter, click here. Please fill out this short survey to request membership.

For more information, contact Chapter President Raychelle Steele at rsteele7@kent.edu

Alumni News

Kent State University President Todd Diacon recently presented the 2020 President’s Award of Distinction to iSchool alumna Maegan Richards of the Salem and East Liverpool Campuses. Click here to read more about this honor.

Student Resources

Joint ALA/OLC Membership

Did you know that as a student, you can join both the American Library Association and the Ohio Library Council for $42? The cost of a student membership is regularly $39 for ALA and $25 for OLC. There are many benefits of membership, including networking opportunities, regular updates on news and events, professional development, and reduced registration at events.

You can join ALA & OLC by clicking here

For more information about the joint membership program, please click here

Questions? Please email OLC Student Representative Brenna Hubschman at bhubschm@kent.edu

NEO-RLS Gold Membership

Currently enrolled iSchool students are eligible for a FREE Gold Membership to the Northeast Ohio Regional Library System. A Gold Membership provides free access to NEO-RLS’s workshops and webinars as well as their archived webinars. NEO-RLS’s Gold Membership provides students with professional development in a wide variety of areas while interacting with library professionals in our region as well as with library professionals in the state and across the nation. 
Sign up by visiting the NEO-RLS website and creating a free account under “Login”
Produced by the iSchool Graduate Student Advisory Council. 
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[January, 2021]