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Bruce Fulton writes "The University of Arizona School of Information Resources and Library Science and the University of Arizona Office of Continuing Education and Academic Outreach are now accepting applications from students interested in a new post-baccalaureate certificate program in Digital Information Management (DigIn). DigIn will provide hands-on experience and focused instruction for people seeking new careers in or improving their skills and knowledge of digital archives, digital libraries, digital document repositories and other kinds of digital collections.
The explosion of digital information and the growth of on-line digital resources has led to a shortage of individuals with an understanding of the disciplines of libraries, document management and archives who also have the technical knowledge and skills needed to create, manage and support digital information collections. The six course 18 credit hour graduate program will provide both new students and working professionals with a balanced mix of content that includes practical applied technology skills along with a foundation in the theory and practice of building and maintaining today’s digital collections. Certificate holders will be well positioned for careers in libraries, archives, local, state and federal government and the private sector.
All coursework is online, so students will not need to take time off work or travel for courses. The program may be completed in 18-30 months and starts each summer with two required courses, Introduction to Applied Technology and Introduction to Digital Collections. The certificate program has been developed in cooperation with The Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records. Major funding for program development comes from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), which has also provided funding for a limited number of scholarships. For more information and to apply, visit the University of Arizona Office of Continuing Education and Academic Outreach website at http://ceao.arizona.edu/dist/sirls_welcome.html. The deadline for scholarship applications and admission to the program starting this summer is March 1, 2007."
Jennifer Potter, president of the University at Buffalo chapter of ALA, had a chance to ask Leslie Burger, President of ALA, about her meeting with UB Provost Satish Tripathi and Interim Dean Lucinda M. Finley, in which they discussed the controversial decision to close the School of Informatics. In this recorded interview, Leslie reports a productive meeting that promised a bright future for the UB MLS program. Leslie also gives this advice to soon-to-graduate students: "Students need to be passionate about what they want to do. They need to create the change they want to see."
Anon E. Mouse writes "Losing Informatics is an article from the UB student magazine Generation. The ax fell on UB's Informatics program without much warning, and the University has moved on. That much is clear.
Some former faculty members have suggested that the Informatics program never got the money and people it needed to thrive. The administration has defended its actions, downplaying the drama.
But questions remain among former students and faculty of the school. UB personnel haven't openly spoken about why they chose to "reorganize" the Informatics majors and close the school, or, why they did so without warning. Why did the School of Informatics close? And what does this mean for UB students and UB as a whole?"
In order to combat the alleged shortage of librarians, a library school in Missouri is getting over $600,000 in Federal grant money to train people not to be librarians. Read the entire blog entry at the Annoyed Librarian.
Accreditation is in the balance for the MLS program at the University of Buffalo, one of the campuses of the State University of New York, according to this story from Bizjournals. The ALA's "conditional" level of accreditation assigned to the program means the academic program is in "immediate noncompliance" with several areas of the association's standards, said Karen O'Brien, director of the association's accreditation office. A story from last Friday detailed UB's plans for an "interdisciplinary" program in informatics.
UB officials have until Dec. 1 to submit a plan for the removal of the conditional accreditation.
One more bit from the ongoing saga over at SUNY Buffalo. This one, from Satish K. Tripathi, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Dear School of Informatics Community,
The purpose of my letter is to ensure that there is a clear understanding of the recent decision to realign the School of Informaticsâ€™ constituent departments â€“ the Department of Communication and the Department of Library and Information Studies â€“ and the reasons for this decision. Before I begin, I would like to reassure our faculty, students, staff, and alumni that undergraduate and graduate courses and academic degree programs, including the programs in Informatics, that have been offered in the School will continue to be offered in their new administrative homes. -- Read More
Jaclyn Mussehl writes "In an editorial in today's Buffalo News, Jeff Carballada writes, 'Without the focus and resources that accompany a school of the university, informatics at UB will die, along with the leadership position our region was enjoying.'"
I just got this Statement below via email, originally written by W. David Penniman, PhD Dean, School of Informatics. It ends with his stong Opinion Statement:
"What appears above are the facts as I have documented them during their occurrence. As to my opinion, any dean serves at the pleasure of a provost, but serves first the faculty. I believe I have done that. A provost may fire a dean for reason or not, but he must not be allowed to fire a school. I will continue to object publicly to this administrationâ€™s motives and means regarding the School as well as their end objectives. This administration has failed to act in the collegial manner expected by the faculty and has taken dramatic action when most university faculty are away for the summer. They have misused their power and have discredited an innovative school, the university, and me. This entire debacle brings real doubt as to the credibility of the collegial process supposedly underlying their administration, including the UB2020 process. Shame on them."
The entire statement is below... -- Read More
Jenn writes "Sudden and seemingly unilateral decisions have been made by the University at Buffalo's Provost to force out the Dean, and then dismantle the fledgling School of Informatics, which houses the Department of Library and Information Studies. LIS will be absorbed by Graduate School of Education, Communications will go over the College of Arts and Sciences, and the fate of the new Informatics degrees is still unclear.
Students and faculty have not had a voice in this process. Last night, 19 students and alums gathered to voice their concerns and talk about their positive experiences at SOI for a podcast hosted by Jim Milles at Check This Out. It's episode 33, here. Please give it a listen. Students are concerned about their futures and want answers."
Business First of Buffalo has a report on The UB School of Informatics. The School of Informatics was originally conceived as a place to bring together four departments, including the departments of computer science and engineering, media study and communication and the school of information and library studies. Computer science and engineering and media study never joined the school, however. Tripathi contends the dissolution of the school aligns with the principles of the UB 2020 planning process, which calls for providing the best academic support for students and making changes that would allow programs to flourish.