ARSL Scholarship

We invite you to apply to attend the 2014 conference of the Association of Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) held in Tacoma, WA. Preconferences begin on September 3 with the full conference kicking off on September 4th and continuing through 6th. The Washington State Library, with funding from the Library Services Technology Act (LSTA) is providing full scholarships for this event.

The ARSL conference is specifically targeted for rural library staff. Previous conference topics have included building community advocacy; effective trustee recruitment; inexpensive programming ideas; innovative web services with few resources; virtual networking; and many more.

Scholarships will include transportation, all conference fees and meals provided during the conference, and lodging. Thursday and Friday evening meals will be cover at state per diem rate.

Requirements for conference attendance eligibility

  • Must work at a small and rural library or library branch (serving 10,000 or fewer) in Washington State.
  • Preference will be given to first time applicants who have not attended an ARSL conference. Previous attendees are eligible to apply for the full scholarships as well through the Washington State Library.
  • Must commit to a follow-up project resulting from attendance at the conference.
  • Demonstrate willingness to share knowledge gained with fellow library/district staffers.
  • Show how conference attendance will help meet library's goals related to the LSTA priorities.
  • Signed permission from person in your organization who must approve your conference attendance.

To apply

To apply, please complete the ARSL Scholarship Application Adobe Reader - Click to Download. Please provide specific examples, considering the following LSTA priorities:

  1. Expanding services for learning and access to information and educational resources in a variety of formats, in all types of libraries, for individuals of all ages in order to support such individuals' needs for education, life-long learning, workforce development, and digital literacy skills.
  2. Establishing or enhancing electronic and other linkages and improved coordination among and between libraries and entities, as described in 9134(b) (6), for the purpose of improving the quality of and access to library and information services.
  3. Providing training and professional development, including continuing education, to enhance the skills of the current library workforce and leadership, and advance the delivery of library and information services. Enhancing efforts to recruit future professionals to the field of library and information services.
  4. Developing public and private partnerships with other agencies and community-based organizations.
  5. Targeting library services to individuals of diverse geographic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds, to individuals with disabilities, and to individuals with limited functional literacy or information skills.
  6. Targeting library and information services to persons having difficulty using a library and to underserved urban and rural communities, including children (from birth through age 17) from families with incomes below the poverty line (as defined by the Office of Management and Budget and revised annually in accordance with section 9902(2) of title 42) applicable to a family of the size involved.
  7. Developing library services that provide all users access to information through local, State, regional, national, and international collaborations and networks; and

The deadline for applications, hand delivered or postmarked, is May 30, 2014. Requests may be mailed to:

Carolyn Petersen
Library Development
Washington State Library
P.O. Box 42460
Olympia, WA, 98504-2460


Once the scholarships are awarded the following process begins.

  1. All attendees “meet” via a webinar and agree what time to meet during the conference. Usually cell phone numbers are exchanged and attendees begin networking before and during the conference.
  2. At the formal meeting (Usually a dinner meeting on Friday night) each attendee shares what program has given them new ideas. The ideas are recorded and a time is chosen for a follow up webinar a month after the ARSL conference.
  3. One month later everyone attends the follow-up webinar to discuss how the implementation of their idea is going. Advice is offered from peer to peer.
  4. Six months after that date, the group is convened again and the group discusses what has happened.
  5. The group members are asked them to write up their project and send it into the project manager for the LSTA annual report.
Feedback We encourage your feedback. If you have comments or suggestions, please use our feedback form.

Funded in part by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).