Message from the Director

David EichmannDavid Eichmann, Associate Professor

As you heft this expanded 50th Anniversary issue of the SLIS Newsletter, I hope you fully explore the breadth of experience and history connected to the School to be found within. We have collected experiences and reflections from the current faculty, folks from the past I’m sure many of you will recognize, and from alums representing each decade of the School’s graduates. SLIS has a long and respected history of serving the state and the nation, and the articles in this issue have reminded me just how substantial the School’s impact has been, and the promise that the future holds.

I’m also pleased to announce that we have a new student support fund at the University of Iowa Foundation in honor of Carl Orgren, long-time director of the School. More information regarding the new fund will be forthcoming. For now, mark October 18, 2017 on your calendar as the date for our SLIS 50th Anniversary Celebration in conjunction with the Iowa Library Association meeting in Coralville and our official kick-off for the Orgren Fund.

Prospects for the School have never been stronger. Our teacher librarian distance program continues to attract committed, engaged students, as does our joint degree and certificate with the UI Center for the Book. Our Public Digital Humanities certificate is showing every sign of becoming equally popular. The School is also welcoming one of its largest incoming class ever, with 50+ students starting in the fall. These exciting opportunities do not come without changes, however. I’m sad to report that Prof. Jim Elmborg has accepted the directorship of the University of Alabama School of Library and Information Studies effective this summer. We wish Jim well! I’m pleased to report that we were successful in recruiting two new faculty this Spring – Chaoqun Ni joins us from the faculty of Simmons College’s SLIS and Margaret Zimmerman joins us from the University of South Carolina, where she just completed her doctorate in LIS. Please join me in welcoming them to the School!

Finally, I am also happy to report that the American Library Association’s Committee on Accreditation in June 2016 granted continued accreditation to the School for a full seven years (with no interim reporting requirements!). My complements to the staff and faculty for all of their work on making this such a successful exercise.