I am please to share the following YALSA President’s Program at ALA Annual 2024 in San Diego. A reminder that the session will begin with a YALSA Membership meeting at 10:30 am. Makes sure to mark your calendars, or add it to your conference schedule via the scheduler app now live. I look forward to connecting with any of you that will be attending the conference!

ALA Annual 2024 logo

YALSA’s President Program: Teen Activists and the Freedom to Read

About: Learn how teens have successfully engaged with and activated their communities around the freedom to read. This moderated panel discussion will feature teen advocates and address book banning, censorship, and how they engaged in civic leadership and built coalitions in the face of challenges. The panel will be preceded by a YALSA Membership meeting from 10:30-11am. It will take place at ALA Annual in San Diego. All are welcome!

Date/time: Monday, July 1st from 10:30a.m.-12:00p.m.

Panelists:

Teen Activist: Nationally Recognized: Da’Taeveyon Daniels

Teen Activist: Midwest: Meghana Nakkanti

Teen Activist Group: California, Golden State Readers: Gianna Goodman-Bhyat, Anais Lee, Mirabelle Lee, and Elizabeth Goldman

Respectfully submitted by Colleen Seisser, YALSA President

Over 1700 members gathered, either virtually or in person, in New Orleans in January to attend ALA’s LibLearnX. It was a momentous occasion, not just because it was the first ever in-person LibLearnX, but also because of ALA Governance. LibLearnX 2023 was the first time ALA held the Governance Institute which brought together ALA member leaders and provided invaluable insights into critical issues related to effective governance, with a focus on communications and financial analysis, review, and stewardship. There was also an ALA Special Council Session called to discuss, revise and finalize the ALA Bylaws. This was not an easy task, and was not taken lightly. This revision has been the result of over five years and over hundreds of hours of work by multiple committees (SCOE, Forward Together, Transforming ALA Governance Task Force, and ALA Council). 

On June 27, 2022, during the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., ALA Council voted overwhelmingly in the affirmative to rescind the ALA Constitution and tasked the ALA Constitution and Bylaws Committee (CBC) with creating instead a thoroughly revised set of ALA Bylaws that integrates content from the Constitution into a single updated Bylaws document that reflects a modern, forward-looking Association.

Per the ALA Constitution (Article XII. Amendments), rescission of the ALA Constitution requires two consecutive votes of Council, followed by ratification by the members of the Association. On August 26, 2022, Council conducted the required second vote to rescind the Constitution—again voting overwhelmingly in the affirmative.

On January 27, 2023, during the Library Learning Experience event in New Orleans, LA, ninety-eight percent (98%) of ALA Council voted in the affirmative to adopt the general revision of the American Library Association Bylaws as amended, for submission to the American Library Association membership, with the proviso that, after appropriate review upon adoption of the general revision by the ALA membership, all recommended policy insertions be made in the ALA Policy Manual.

So now it’s your turn, the vote is in the hands of membership. Take time to read and understand this important document that will guide the Association in the coming years. Click here to access the ALA ByLaws Revised Document.

Respectfully submitted by Liz Nebeker, YALSA Councilor

Please do not judge the following. I am a Teen Services Librarian, and I read my first volume of manga last year. (In my defense, I am a very new librarian.) When I moved to Montrose, a rural community on Colorado’s Western Slope, for my first library job, it took approximately two working days to realize that manga was a pathway to engaging a broad, diverse swathe of teens in my town. At the local middle and high schools, I saw My Hero Academia t-shirts in every direction. The first time I book-talked Spy X Family to the high school book club, folks who had never talked to me before stayed long after the bell to describe their favorite manga and anime. (I nodded along and hoped I didn’t look too clueless.) I put out an anonymous suggestion box in the library’s Teen Space, and approximately 90% of those suggestions were manga.

The point: it took approximately two days to realize manga was vitally important, especially to the teen community, and it took approximately two days to realize I was woefully under-read and unknowledgeable.

Thus, when YALSA announced the program for its 2022 YA Symposium, I swooned upon seeing the half-day pre-conference sessions devoted to manga and anime. Swooned and then fired off emails asking when I might apply for the Symposium travel stipend. Those sessions not only seemed great fits for me in theory, they proved great fits in practice.

In addition to introducing me to a variety of new titles (e.g., Rooster Fighter, Wandance) and comprehensive resources (mangainlibraries.com), Jillian Rudes’ session led participants through some close reading of manga. I have never considered myself a great visual reader. I tend to spend little time on the art and barrel through the text, effectively missing half the book. In the Manga in Libraries session, we engaged in brief exercises that slowed me down in my reading and asked me to interpret what the text and the visuals were doing on the page together, particularly as they applied to emotional development or understanding of characters. I’m not a school librarian, so I’m not regularly in situations in which I closely read a text alongside teens, but taking some time to do this myself with manga gave me tools for becoming a better reader, which gave me tools for becoming a better recommender. Before my most recent visit to the high school’s book club, I re-read the manga I’d planned to share with those tools in mind – and then, during the book talks, I emphasized elements of the art, rather than merely describing plot. While this is purely anecdotal, more books were checked out during that visit than ever before.

The afternoon I spent in the Anime Boot Camp with Jake Ciarapica and Kevin Jayce gave me similarly concrete takeaways: I’ve got a list of popular publishers, a library account with Crunchyroll that I can use to start an anime club (independently requested by teens here months ago, but I was too intimidated to try), and ideas for our first programs (thank you, Anime Trivia and discussion). I also feel at least a tiny bit more “hip with the teens,” which the presenters assured us was one great reason to talk about anime.

In terms of confidence, knowledge, and skills, the YA Symposium pre-conference gave me the boost I needed to embrace an area of Teen Services for which teens are clamoring. But, perhaps even better, I came to realize both how fun and how impactful manga and anime can be, and understanding that on a deeper level is already helping me connect on a deeper level with the teens in my community.

Amy Dickinson
Teen Services Librarian
Montrose Regional Library District

Post you photos to social media and tag yalsa#22. Show your post to a YALSA staff member at registration and you will receive a YALSA Pop keychain.

YALSA members-you showed up! Attending conference during a pandemic and for me-as President-you definitely feel all the things! It is the members though that showed up for the YALSA Mixer at
Busboys and Poets (thank you YOUmedia and Learning Times), the small group conversations we held at YALSA 301 to talk about the possibilities of involvement in governance, the thoughtful and provoking educational presentations by members and the well-attended Coffee Klatch on early Sunday morning that brought the energy to such an enormous event!

It’s a lot to process and for the nervous system in general when many of us may have been taking a pause from large scale events for a bit. But before we put our nose to the grind again or sit behind that reference desk or whatever shape our job may take us in this week I’d also encourage you not to hesitate. Did you exchange cards with someone that you made a connection with in YALSA? Did Franklin Escobedo, incoming YALSA President, share some volunteer opportunities that you are thinking about? Are you scrolling through photos and remember how they made you feel -like you might want to do it all again (hello upcoming Symposium in Baltimore!). Don’t hesitate-just do it. Get your morning coffee (if that’s your habit) and register, sign up, send that email! If you didn’t go to conference. . . maybe you’re still curious! Like us on socials, check out our site, and reach out!

As the last blog post as your President, I also wanted to share some of the items the Board discussed at meetings this conference. Thank you to the Evaluating Volunteer Resources Task Force for your recommendations on helping YALSA align with our EDI Plan. For Board members who brought forth a document on making the member grant and scholarship applications a more fair and equitable process. This input was directly from members which shapes YALSA and in turn give us resources to better serve teens. A comprehensive agenda and documents can be found here. Minutes will be posted soon.

A huge thank you to YALSA staff as well for continuing to support our work and ‘make the magic happen.’ The information that is put online, the sponsors at our conference sessions, the membership process, the swag, the budget. . . . .all YALSA staff. Thank you LaMoya, Letitia, Carla, Ninah and Rachel!

I look forward to continuing to serve members as Immediate Past President and the incoming Board and President Escobedo where I’m needed!

What a wild and wonderful year!

Thank you,

Kelly

Any questions or comments, feel free to email: kellyczarnecki1@gmail.com.

2020-2021 YALSA President-Elect Kelly Czarnecki

Kelly Czarnecki (she/her)
YALSA President
2021-2022
Photo credit: Taken by Kelly Czarnecki

The 2022 co-sponsored ALA/USBBY program will be held at the American Library Association’s Annual Conference on Sunday, June 26, 2022, in Washington D.C., from 1-2 pm. The program is titled “Celebrate Indigenous Storytelling: Books from across the Northern Border and will be held in the Washington Convention Center, Room 149A-B. Save the program now in the online Conference Scheduler

Program Description: Join the United States Board on Books for Young People (USBBY) as we celebrate indigenous storytelling! Hear from Inuit author Monica Ittusardjuat, as well as the co-founding authors of Inhabit Media, an Inuit-owned, independent Canadian publishing company. USBBY, an affiliate of ALA, serves as the U.S. National Section of the International Board on Books for Young People, which was founded to promote international understanding and good will through books for children and adolescents.

Authors:

Are you a member of USBBY? A diverse group, USBBY members join together to celebrate and promote international literature for children and young adults. The membership of USBBY includes authors and illustrators, publishers and editors, critics and translators, booksellers, social workers, teachers, university professors and students, librarians and parents. Membership in USBBY is open to anyone interested in its mission and starts at the individual basic rate of $50/year. Once a member, we’d love to have you volunteer to serve on one of our award, selection, or service committees! 

USBBY is governed by a Board of Directors that includes an elected Executive Committee and twelve Directors (four elected and eight appointed), who represent the USBBY membership as well as USBBY´s patron organizations: Children´s Book Council (CBC), the American Library Association (ALA), the International Literacy Association (formerly IRA), and the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

This year your ALA Appointed Directors to the USBBY Board are Sarah Hill (YALSA) and Sara Kelly Johns (AASL).

YALSA is excited to announce that the 2022 Call for proposals for the YA Symposium is now open.  The Symposium will be held November 4-6 in Baltimore, MD.

This year’s theme is “Rediscovering Our Charm: Supporting Teens and Each Other in Our Libraries”

Celebrate the wonderful community of librarians at an event that captures the collaboration, excitement and innovation of what we do best!  We will explore new ways to uplift and support both ourselves and our teens through services and stories. Join YALSA, librarians, and YA authors in Baltimore, the home of Margaret A. Edwards, as we come together to learn, share and honor her vision as courageous champions of young adults.

We are looking for creative, engaging proposals for sessions that embrace the 2022 theme.  Sessions are one hour long, but you  can utilize a variety of formats from traditional PowerPoint/Slides presentations to panel discussions, or discussion groups.

If you are interested in helping the YA community rediscover their charm, please submit a proposal.  The deadline for submissions is Thursday, May 12, 2022.  Visit the submission portal to see what is required.

Are you planning on going to ALA Annual in June 2022? Would you like to write about your experience for YALSAblog? We’d love to feature you as a guest blogger! 

As a reminder, YALSAblog posts are typically 500-750 words. We ask that bloggers link to YALSA information when relevant – there are some guidelines on the blog that might help you out herehere, and here

And here’s an example of what these ALA Annual recap posts look like: https://yalsa.ala.org/blog/2018/07/05/ala-2018-annual-recap-from-a-first-time-attendee/ 

Feel free to reach out to Kelly Czarnecki l if you’d like to write a post about ALA Annual, or if you have any questions about deadlines.

The first months of 2022 have flown by and registration for ALA’s Annual Conference has begun.  We are still looking for volunteers who live in the DC area to help with Local Arrangements and Marketing.   It’s a short volunteer term so it’s not too lengthy.  Volunteers will assist during the conference and what better way to meet other YALSA members in your area if you don’t know them already!  I know from personal experience its always nice to meet members in their hometowns, since you have the knowledge of the best places to eat and see! 

Here is the description of the task force: 

Annual Conference Marketing & Local Arrangements Taskforce – Washington DC

  • To plan and implement YALSA local arrangements activities in close cooperation with YALSA’s Program Officer for Conferences & Events, including assisting on-site with logistics for YALSA programs.
  • To work with YALSA’s Communications Specialist prior to the conference to create and disseminate online marketing materials that promote YALSA’s presence at the ALA Annual Conference. 

Committee members are expected to attend Annual. 5 – 7 virtual members including the chair. Term: 6 Months, January 1 to June 30 

And it’s March, so it’s really only 3 months now!  

If your interested in volunteering please contact Letitia Smith lsmith@ala.org or myself Franklin Escobedo fescobedo@cityoflarkspur.org 

I’ll see you too in DC!

Franklin Escobedo
YALSA President-Elect 2021-2022

We’ve begun planning for the next Young Adult Symposium which will be held in Baltimore! We’re nlooking for volunteers who live in the Baltimore area for the YA Symposium Local Arrangements Committee as well as volunteers for the YA Symposium Planning and Marketing Taskforce. Taskforce members can live anywhere in the country.

Here are the details about the committee and taskforce.

YA Symposium Local Arrangements Taskforce:
To work with YALSA’s Program Officer prior to the conference to identify venues for and plan YALSA activities in Baltimore, such as city tours and dine-arounds.  Support the Symposium on-site by introducing speakers, moderating panels, assisting with setting up for special events, welcoming attendees, and more. Committee size: 5 to 7 members including the chair.  Term: January 1 through
November 30.  Size:  5 to 7 members; members conduct planning virtually but are expected to attend the Symposium.

YA Symposium Planning and Marketing Taskforce:
To assist YALSA’s Program Officer with the planning and marketing of the conference, including vetting papers and proposals, vetting scholarship applications, assisting the Program Officer with identifying authors and keynote speakers, and leveraging social media tools to promote the event and scholarship
opportunities, and more. Members will regularly share content via social media and through their state and local networks to build excitement for and share information about the event. Members will work with YALSA’s Communications Specialist to assist with the implementation of a marketing plan. Size: 5 to
7 virtual members, including the chair. Term: January 1 through November 30

To sign up, fill out the volunteer form here: https://www.ala.org/yalsa/getinvolved/getinvolved (click on the Committee Volunteer form under sign up). Don’t forget you’ll need to log into the ALA website to complete the form.

If you have questions feel free to email me.

Franklin Escobedo
YALSA President-Elect 2021-2022
fescobedo@cityoflarkspur.org