IMLS Awards over $150 Million to State Libraries: Funds Will Improve Technology and Provide Service to America's Neediest. (Making News)

Article excerpt

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has announced grants totaling $150,435,000 to library agencies in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. territories. These federal grants help provide library service to America's rural and urban residents, particularly to children living in poverty. The grants also provide libraries with technology to keep the public connected to information they need and use.

The grants are awarded under the Library Services and Technology Act and are made to each state according to a population-based formula. State agencies administer the funds, and states provide at least $1 for every $2 of federal support.

The funds help library patrons prepare for and find employment through skills and career assessment testing, and resume and cover letter writing workshops, and by providing free access to electronic job banks.

Early childhood education is also a priority. Libraries team up with organizations such as Head Start; the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program; and housing authorities to promote school readiness, provide family literacy programs, and disseminate children's books and information on local preschool programs.

Libraries also invest in technology. Public libraries are the number one point of online access for people without Internet connections at home, school, or work-95 percent of libraries provide free public access to the Internet.

The IMLS is an independent federal grant-making agency that supports the nation's 15,000 museums and 122,000 libraries. The institute encourages partnerships to expand the educational benefit of libraries and museums. For more information, go to www.imls.gov.

LMD International Paper Competition

The Library Management Division (LMD) has announced that Paiki Muswazi is the winner of the LMD International Paper Competition. Muswazi is a Global 2000 Fellow and head of special collections at the University of Swaziland Libraries. He will receive an all-expensepaid trip to SLA's 94th Annual Conference in New York City and a two-year SLA membership. Honorable mention was given to Umar Farooq, a reference specialist with the USIA Resource Center in Islamabad and his father, Muhammad Yaqub Chaudhary, a librarian at the University of Aziz in Kashmir in Pakistan. Chaudhary, a Global 2000 Fellow, has been twinned by the Pacific Northwest chapter and received the Science and Technology Division's Travel Award in 2002. …