At the request of ALSC, I had a conference call with their President, Julie Corsaro, along with the ALSC and YALSA Executive Directors on Feb. 9. ALSC wanted to discuss the possibility of a mediated discussion between the leadership of the two divisions at the October 2011 Fall Executive Committee meeting. This request came about because of a 2011 Midwinter discussion ALSC’s board had regarding their Board motion to change the age range that ALSC serves. During the February conversation, I told Julie that I would be happy to take this idea to the YALSA Executive Committee to explore during our meeting, via conference call, on April 19. YALSA’s Executive Committee did discuss this during their call last month and determined that talking with ALSC about opportunities for the two divisions to work together to better serve members and promote the profession would be beneficial.
In the year or so that ALSC has been reviewing and discussing its age range, YALSA’s board had a conversation on a similar topic. At its 2009 Midwinter Meeting, the YALSA board, during a “mega issue” discussion, explored the question “How should YALSA address the expanding adolescent years?” You can read the board document on the mega issue (PDF).
During YALSA Board mega issue discussions, decisions are not typically made, and they weren’t in this case, either. There were no board actions or official motions that came out of the discussion. However, the discussion did spur a grassroots effort to establish YALSA’s Serving New Adults Interest Group (http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/yalsa/aboutyalsab/discussion.cfm)
While ALSC and YALSA do already partner on a few projects, such as the Odyssey Award and the Interdivisional Committee on School & Public Library Cooperation, I, the Executive Committee, and Board look forward to exploring other opportunities for the two divisions to work together to better serve members and advance the profession.
Respectfully submitted, Kim Patton, YALSA President
Teen Tech Week kept us all busy in March as we explored and shared the joys of technology with our teens. Thank you to all the YALSA members who participated in Teen Tech Week activities with the teens in your libraries! …and speaking of YALSA members, have you ever wondered just who it is that makes up the YALSA membership? Here is a snapshot that shows just who your fellow members are:
Total membership: 5,416 (1.3% increase over this time last year)
11% are academics
24% are students
26% are school librarians
37% are public librarians
2% are other (retirees, friends, etc.) (more…)