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ACRL Appointments Committee: Committee Volunteer Information: (Dr. E. J.) Josey Spectrum Scholar Mentor Committee

Those interested in volunteering for an ACRL Division-Level Committee will find all the information they need to research committee options, including the work of each committee and the time commitments expected for volunteers.

What is the main work of this committee?

  • To administer the mentorship program (recruiting mentors and mentees, matching, shepherding them - note this work is busy at times determined by the committee and ODLOS)
  • To award conference scholarships for Spectrum Scholars (busy in Nov/Dec and April in the years before/of the conference)

What are the busy times of year for your committee?

The (Dr. E.J.) Josey Spectrum Scholar Mentor Committee is busiest during the months of March, April, July and September.

On average, what time commitment does being a member of your committee require?

On average, a committee member could expect to spend 0-2 hours per month working on committee assignments/tasks/projects. 

What skills or expertise would be valuable in a member of your committee?

The primary need is for folks to be familiar with the Spectrum program, particularly ones who have been Spectrum Scholars, and for people who are from one or more minoritized groups. Additionally, having experience with and interest in recruitment & retention of BIPOC/disabled/LGBTQ+/etc. people in librarianship is helpful. Experience with mentorship programs or awards/scholarships juries is useful as well.

Is there anything else someone thinking of volunteering for your committee should know?

This committee does not take up a lot of time each month, unless you are planning a session for ALA/ACRL or a webinar. In which case, it may take 3-4 hours per month.

What is the most enjoyable aspect of the committee’s work, from your perspective?

Mentoring programs are a best practice in recruitment & retention for minoritized populations. This committee is one of the few in which I feel like I am doing good work to support DEI as the core purpose. It's always fun to read mentor/mentee information and make matches - particularly when you hear back that the match was a successful one. Other things I like are giving away scholarship money and meeting mentor/mentee pairs at ACRL!

Is there anything else someone thinking of volunteering for your committee should know?

We are really hoping to increase the number of Spectrum alumni/ae on this committee, regardless of whether they participated in the mentorship program proper. You can do both at once - be a mentor/mentee AND be on the committee. It's not a lot of work except at the intensive times when we are matching pairs (this varies from cycle to cycle) and awarding scholarships (every other fall, before the conference). As noted above, nearly all of the work is done remotely, the only in-person opportunities are at ACRL and are entirely voluntary (and fun!).