Thursday, December 3, 2009

A Fond Farewell

To the SLIS Community,

I wanted to share a final farewell before I leave SLIS. My time with SLIS has been exciting, nerve wracking (at points) and a privilege. Our accomplishments during my tenure are truly amazing. We achieved two professional accreditation successes and saw a significant upturn in enrollments. We held a research symposium that was an unprecented success and brought the President of ALA to our School. We hosted a career development event in collaboration with the District of Columbia Special Libraries Association (DCSLA) that was well attended and received kudos from everyone who attended the event. We established our mission, core values and objectives in collaboration with our community and put in place a Working Plan for the School to guide us now and into the future.

The faculty had many research and teaching achievements and two of the SLIS faculty, Dr. Choi and Dr. Kules received OCLC grants for their research! Three other faculty had articles published, Dr. Hsieh-Yee, Dr. Lussky and Professor Shumaker. All in all, it was a very productive time.

The School is in great shape and its future is bright. Thanks for your part in making SLIS a great place to be and come back to in the years to come.

With best wishes for the holidays and always,

Dean Kelley

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Excitement Builds!

We are about to begin the new fall semester! What an exciting time of the year. For those of you who took comprehensive examinations this summer, you will get notification of the outcome of the examination on August 28th, 2009. Typically, we are able to send out an email to the SLIS listserv in the afternoon about the outcome of the examination.

As we prepare for the fall semester, please be thinking about the following items:

1) Registration for classes. Please check that you are registered for the courses you want. Check Cardinal Station and be sure everything is as it should be.

2) Check in Cardinal Station to see that your email account listed in Cardinal Station is the one you will read and will readily read/receive. If you leave the default email address there, it will go to your CUA mail account. Your email account is used for all communication from the School so ensure it's correct before the first day of classes, August 31st.

3) Check to see who your advisor will be. And, consider sending him/her a note to introduce yourself. And, ask any questions you may have.

4) Keep in mind very important dates: The last day of drop/add: Friday, September 11th. Last day to withdraw from classes: November 13th, Last day of classes for the semester is December 14th and, comprehensive exams will be held: October 23 and 24th.

I welcome you to SLIS, or welcome you back after the summer break. I look forward to working with you and having a great academic year.

Dean Kelley

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

CUA-SLIS Achieves Full Re-accreditation

I have received the official letter from the American Library Association’s Committee on Accreditation. They have decided to release SLIS from conditional accreditation status. This returns the School to the seven (7) year accreditation cycle putting our next accreditation visit in 2016. The recent decision means that your effort, contribution, and participation in demonstrating how wonderful SLIS is, led to the successful decision at ALA that returns CUA to a re-accredited program on a seven, rather than three, year cycle. The Committee congratulated us on our efforts in planning and assessment and stated that they are confident that if we continue on our path, we will continue to be fully accredited and successful fulfilling our unique niche in the metropolitan D.C. area.

Now is not the time for complacency, however. I intend for SLIS to continue on its path of success to ensure we remain accredited and meet the ALA standards by continually assessing our progress and improving our program.

I want to thank each of you for your efforts on our behalf. I appreciate your efforts and all that it contributed to this exciting, thrilling!, outcome.

A recent Library Journal article provides some more information on the outcome of the COA's deliberations at ALA. see for the highlights of the recent accreditation decisions of the Committee on Accreditation.

Thanks to one and all for your participation in this very happy outcome for CUA-SLIS.
Dean Kelley

Friday, April 17, 2009

April 17, 2009
I wanted to alert our community that the final report, finalized by the SLIS External Review Panel (ERP), was submitted to the Committee on Accreditation last week, the week of April 13th, 2009. If you are interested in the report, it is now available through the SLIS Web site at: . At this point, the ALA Committee on Accreditation will review the Program Presentation we submitted in February and the ERP report submitted this month, to make their decision regarding SLIS's accreditation status. The ERP visit went well and we are very appreciative to the ERP for their dedication and thoughtful, final report on our program and School.

The SLIS faculty have been highly engaged in determining the future of the School and the visit with the ERP helped us to examine and refine our planning efforts for the School. It was an instructive, useful and informative opportunity for SLIS and we appreciate everyone's involvement.

Last night we had the Career Enhancement Event we co-hosted with the District of Columbia Special Library Association (DCSLA). Information on the event is available at: . It was a great event. I think the "speed mentoring" which is a five minute discussion with a potential employer was extremely valuable to everyone seeking employment, interested in exploring new opportunities, or just learning more about how they present themselves and how they can improve their personal presentation for potential employers. The break-out sessions about employment opportunities in various information sectors were also very instructive and enjoyable. I want to thank Mary Talley and Diane Schnurrpusch for their leadership and for their willingness to coordinate the speed mentoring. I also need to thank Dr. Alan Goodman of the CUA Career Services Office for participating in our resume doctor activity as well as Deborah Brightwell of InfoCurrent for her tireless assistance to all of the individuals seeking advice yesterday evening. I also want to thank Dr. Goodman for leading a resume workshop for SLIS students in April preceding this event. I hope to do more of these types of events, at least repeat them every year in April for our graduating students and our alumni. I am glad we were able to host University of Maryland (UMD) students also and I look forward to co-hosting more events in the future with both DCSLA and UMD.

As the academic semester winds to a close, I can say it's been a very good year for SLIS. I hope you will share your ideas for how SLIS can continue to improve our service to our community and I look forward to hearing from you as we develop our programming for the fall semester over the summer.

Dean Kelley

Friday, March 27, 2009

March 27, 2009

The accreditation visit ended on March 24th. The exit briefing with the External Review Panel (ERP) was extremely valuable, informative and a reassuring ending to the visit that started on the 21st of March. We were quite fortunate to have an experienced, thoughtful, and diplomatic chair for our ERP, Dr. Jean Donham, who represented the American Library Association (ALA) very well and led the team during their visit here to campus. I feel privileged to have worked with her and she certainly had an excellent team to support her during the recent visit with SLIS.

I also owe a huge debt of gratitude to the SLIS community. The outpouring of support was exemplary, the effort expended by our advisory board members, our alumni, our part-time faculty and our students was heart warming and an important element of the visit's success. I can honestly say that whatever the outcome of the visit, which I will know formally in July, the participation of the SLIS community was the most outstanding aspect of the visit and demonstrated how special the SLIS community of scholars and stakeholders is. The ERP mentioned how impressed they were with everyone who participated and what a delight all of the individuals were who joined us for the various events associated with the visit. I was overwhelmed by the response, by the level of participation, and the thoughtful feedback the ERP received that resulted in a positive impression for the ERP.

I cannot thank everyone enough. I can also state unequivocally that the success of the visit is due to your involvement, that you provided unparalleled support, and your support mattered a great deal. I am cautiously optimistic about the outcome of our visit. I am extremely proud of all of you, SLIS's stakeholders, and I thank each of you for what you did to contribute to our visit's success.

Now, let's plan the next seven years, shall we? :-)

I'll send out a prospective date/time for a party in July pending the decision of the Committee on Accreditation.
Again, my sincerest thanks.
Dean Kelley

Saturday, January 24, 2009

To the SLIS Community.

It's been too long since last I said a few words about what is going on in SLIS. So, it's nice to be back and able to share a few words about the School's progress. My "absence" is due to the need to finish the final Program Presentation, our accreditation report to the American Library Association (ALA), which took the majority of my time over the final weeks of December culminating with the safe transfer of the document to the printer on January 15th, 2009. So, the report is currently in the process of being printed, and soon thereafter, I will post it to the SLIS Web site at: I encourage you to review the Synthesis and Overview section of the report if you do not have much time but want to get a flavor of the report.

Also, we are putting the finishing "touches" on the upcoming SLIS Symposium that will take place on January 30th, 2009. It is indeed a privilege to host so many of our colleagues and students at this event. We currently have over 100 participants and which is gratifying and indicates the need for such events to make connections and improve our research and practice. Thank you to all of you who submitted proposals and are contributing to this exciting event in SLIS's history.

The accreditation process is progressing. The next major milestone will be to send the External Review Panel (ERP) the report on February 9, 2009. They will review our report, which is certainly an impressive effort by the SLIS faculty, and visit us in March. They arrive on the 21st and 22nd, have a full day of meetings planned for the 22nd, 23rd and 24th, culminating in a briefing for the SLIS community on their findings and an initial discussion of their recommendations to the Committee on Accreditatin (COA). I have been visiting our SLIS students to tell them personally about our efforts and asking for their help in achieving re-accreditation for the School. I also need to assistance of our alumni, adjunct faculty, and employers to help us let the ERP know that SLIS has great students, faculty, staff and employers who value the School's existence and want to ensure the School remains to fulfill its unique mission in the Washington, D.C. region. I will publish the itinerary for our guest's visit as soon as it is finalized. It is likely that the ERP will want to meet with SLIS adjunct faculty, alumni and employers on Sunday the 22nd, around 3 in the afternoon. Please "save the date" and plan to join us at this important meeting to be held in the Mullen Library, May Gallery.

I was touched to see the outpouring of support from the SLIS students I have spoken to thus far. Several suggested they would like to contribute letters of support for the School to add to our sources of evidence for the ERP to review. Certainly, if you are interested in providing a testimonial, I would be most pleased to receive it. All student, alumni or faculty testimonials received will become part of our sources of evidence for the visit and we would be most appreciative to hear from any/all of you. Please send these testimonials to me, either by mail or email, and I will ensure they are shared with our visitors.

May I wish each and every one of you a happy and healthy new year. As we gear up for the visit of the accrediting team, I feel most gratified by the support I have received within the SLIS community. Thank you for your support as we prepare to present our school and community to the visiting team. I know we can help them to understand why SLIS is important to our University, region and the LIS field. I hope you will agree that SLIS has made a difference for you too.

Dean Kelley

Thursday, November 20, 2008

There is much going on at SLIS and all of it is very exciting and the result of the efforts of so many of our dedicated students, faculty, and alumni. As we enter the holiday season, let me thank each of you for your contributions on behalf of SLIS and express my appreciation for all that you do for SLIS.

The Program Presentation draft for the American Library Association (ALA) is due on Friday the 21st of November. Once it is safely winging its way to ALA, I will work with the faculty to put it up on the SLIS accreditation Web site so all members of our outstanding community have an opportunity to review and read it (it is quite long, however, so be forewarned). We have spent countless hours to obtain the data necessary to tell our story, be self reflective, and improve our program. I hope you will see that our efforts have paid off and that SLIS is meeting stakeholder needs through self-improvement.

Further, we are preparing for several upcoming events that I want to invite you to participate in and join us as we provide venues for our community to foster collaboration and mutual understanding:
1. The SLIS Holiday Party is scheduled for December 2, 2008 from 6 - 9 PM. Please join us and share in the spirit of the season.
2. The SLIS Symposium, Bridging the Spectrum: A Symposium on Scholarship and Practice in Library and Information Science is scheduled for January 30, 2009 from 10. Please join us as we share our research, foster discussion, and seek new ways to contribute to the field. We had over 40 submissions for presentations and poster sessions and James Rettig, ALA President is our guest speaker. It will be an exciting and rejuvenating event. I hope to see you there.
3. The ALA accreditation visiting team arrives on the 22nd of March and departs on the 24th of March, 2009. This is a call for alumni, students, and part-time faculty to join us and help us tell our story to demonstrate our contribution to the students, faculty, university and field. I will likely put out a call for alumni and part-time faculty to join us, I hope I can count on you to be there and show support for SLIS.

SLIS recently hosted its fall faculty meeting at the Mullen Library, May Gallery. The event included a presentation by Ms. Karen O'Brien, the ALA Director of the Office of Accreditation. We had some excellent conversations about the curriclum and the needs of the program. I encourage you to view the video of the event available at: page.

When we released the spring schedule of classes, we reviewed and analyzed the needs of students, based on their feedback, and made over five changes to the spring schedule to meet your needs. Be on the lookout for the summer schedule, we are working on it now.

As we enter into the season of thanksgiving and joy, may I wish you and your loved ones joy, health and well being this holiday season. If you have been touched by the recent economic woes our country is experiencing, please accept my heartfelt sympathy. I know that the situation will eventually improve. I know that we will survive and thrive and be the stronger for the experience. I also know the mood is anxious for us all. With the coming of the holiday season, let us take comfort in the knowledge that we are loved and that each day is a new opportunity.

My best wishes
Dean Kelley