In 2013, PSU received a $487,000 grant from the Laura Bush 21st Century Library program to train and mentor master’s-level library media specialists for school libraries serving the nine Native American Tribes in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri. This spring, that investment paid off when 25 students in that program received their master’s degrees at commencement.
When the grant was awarded, President Steve Scott called libraries “the beating heart of any school.”
“They are also the repository for our culture and our history,” Scott said. “This project will help us train a new generation of specialists who can provide information that is critical to individual success and also respect and celebrate the Native American history and culture of the region.”
The program was a collaborative effort between PSU, the nine Native American Tribes, 16 school districts with Native American student populations greater than 10 percent, and the American Indian Center for Excellence (AICE) at Northeast Oklahoma A&M.
Library investment pays off–
Members of the Laura Bush 21st Century Library program gathered for a group photo prior to receiving their master’s degrees in May.