About Circle of Learning


On June 15, 2010, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) announced an $842,532 grant award to the San José State University School of Information and the American Indian Library Association. The three-year Circle of Learning project began in September 2010, offering scholarships and other support to American Indians and Alaska Natives who want to earn a fully online Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) degree.

Less than 0.3% of our nation’s librarians are American Indians and Alaska Natives, and the numbers of Native people in library school have always been the smallest of all minority groups. The project’s goal is to increase the number of Native librarians who understand tribal culture and are committed to addressing the challenges faced by libraries serving Native patrons.

Circle of Learning scholarship recipients benefit from the following types of support:

  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Reimbursement for technology expenses, such as computers and Internet connectivity
  • Interaction with professional mentors and peer mentors
  • Interaction with Native leaders in the profession
  • Reimbursement for travel expenses to attend professional conferences
  • Face-to-face COL meetings each year of the grant
  • Online workshops on topics such as oral history, preservation, information services for American Indian patrons, and current issues facing tribal libraries
  • Optional opportunities for internships
  • Academic and career advisement

Learn more about our Circle of Learning project leaders:

Learn more about:

Visit the following websites for information about other scholarships: