Explore the Universe of Teen Reading! YALSA’s offering a fantastic full-day preconference before ALA Annual Conference. Come to Genre Galaxy: Explore the Universe of Teen Reading and meet popular YA authors, including Holly Black, Cecil Castelucci, David Lubar, and Dom Testa! Discover new ways to reach teens with books, including literacy activities, program ideas and collection development. Tickets start at $195 for YALSA members and include lunch.’  Interested? Register online (you don’t have to register for ALA Annual to attend this preconference).

Advance Your Career with YALSA! In uncertain economic times, it’s important to think about your professional goals and make sure you’re in a good position to meet them. Join YALSA for the half-day preconference Moving Up the YA Career Ladder, where we’ll discuss career options for young adult librarians, tips for transitioning into management or other careers, writing effective resumes and CVs, and finding your management style. Tickets cost $129 and include refreshments. Interested? Register online (you don’t have to register for ALA Annual to attend this preconference).

After the jump, details on other special YALSA events at ALA Annual Conference, Operation TBD and Support Teen Lit Day, the WrestleMania Reading Challenge winners, the ALA/YALSA Election, and the Great Ideas contest.

Join YALSA at ALA Annual! In addition to its outstanding preconferences, YALSA has amazing things planned for the 2009 ALA Annual Conference in Chicago this summer, July 9-15! Advanced registration, which could save you up to $50 over onsite registration, ends May 22. Join us for the first-ever YALSA Fashion Show and Happy Hour! Don’t miss hearing this year’s award-winning authors at the Printz Reception, the Edwards Luncheon, and the YA Author Coffee Klatch & Morris Presentation. Plus we have loads of great free programs, including the Alex Awards and Odyssey Award presentations.’  Find out more about our programs and events at the YALSA Annual Wiki.

Operation Teen Book Drop Is On! For the second year, YALSA will participate in Operation TBD (Teen Book Drop), joining with readergirlz and Guys Lit Wire to distribute more than 8,000 books donated by 18 publishers to pediatric hospitals across the United States. Operation TBD takes place during National Library Week on April 16, the third annual Support Teen Literature Day. How can you and your teens get involved? Leave a YA book in a public place with a downloadable bookplate. Bookplates, web badges, a trailer and more can be found on the readergirlz TBD site. Check out ways to celebrate Support Teen Lit Day and to serve sick and homebound teens on the YALSA Wiki.

WrestleMania Reading Challenge News YALSA named the 15 winners in the WrestleMania Reading Challenge! Ten regional winners in grades 7-8 and 9-12 from across the United States will compete in the WrestleMania’® Reading Challenge National Finals in Houston, Texas. Five regional champions from grades 5-6 will also be guests at the finals, which will be held on April 4 at the Houston Public Library. Each regional winner won a trip for two to Houston, tickets to the 25th Anniversary of WrestleMania at Reliant Stadium on April 5 and $2,000 for their sponsoring library. The WrestleMania Reading Challenge is sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), and World Wrestling Entertainment with support from Mattel. See who won!

Vote for YALSA! By now, all YALSA members whose membership was current as of Jan. 31, 2009, should have received email access to their ballots for the ALA Election (including candidates for president and councilor-at-large [PDF]). (If you haven’t received your ballot, contact membership@ala.org). Voting will be open until April 24, and results will be available on May 1.’  See YALSA’s official slate, including the candidates for president-elect, board of directors, YALSA councillor and for awards committees. As you vote, take a look at the resources available in last week’s election post.

Have a Great Idea? Tell YALSA! Brainstorm creative ways to achieve goals in YALSA’s Strategic Plan (PDF), and you can win books and YALSA swag. Enter the Great Ideas contest! Download the guidelines and entry form (PDF) to learn more. Entries due by May 1.

That’s it for this week’s update! To stay up to date on the latest from the YALSA Office, sign up to follow YALSA on Twitter or become a fan of YALSA on Facebook!

About Stephanie Kuenn

Stephanie Kuenn is the communications specialist for YALSA, where she is responsible for YALSA's web content, publications, and media relations. She is currently pursuing an M.A. in library and information studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and holds an M.S. from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and a B.A. in history and journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She enjoys baking, watching sports, and reading. Her favorite book is "All the King's Men" by Robert Penn Warren.

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