Faculty Position in Schools and Youth at the University of South Carolina

The University of South Carolina School of Library and Information Science in Columbia invites applications and nominations for one tenure-track faculty position at the Assistant or Associate Professor level to begin fall 2017 in the area of school librarianship and/or youth services.

Shape the future of library and information science. Pursue your interests in a diverse, intellectually stimulating, and multi-disciplinary environment that provides support and encouragement as part of a collaborative work culture. An earned doctorate in library and information science or a related field is preferred, while strong candidates who are ABD with a fixed graduation date will be considered. This position requires a clearly articulated research agenda, and enthusiasm for and excellence in teaching in both online and face-to-face formats.

The School is particularly interested in candidates with a specialization in school libraries and/or youth services. Selected candidates will be expected to help with the school’s commitment to diversity through research, teaching, and service.

The School of Library and Information Science has a growing Bachelor of Science   in Information Science program and a joint Certificate of Health Communications with Public Health and Communications. The School’s MLIS degree program is fully accredited by the American Library Association.  The school library preparation program is part of the University’s Professional Education Unit which is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).  The School also offers three programs of advanced study beyond the Master’s degree (the Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in Library and Information Science, the Specialist in Library and Information Science, and the Ph.D. in Library and Information Science).  Faculty teach across all degree programs.

The School has a strong commitment to distance education and is one of two Schools in the College of Information and Communications.

The second is the School of Journalism and Mass Communications. The School is located on the   campus’ historic Horseshoe. It has nationally recognized programs in school library media, youth services, and medical librarianship. Since its inception, the School has emphasized the use of information technology as a vital component of library and information services.

Founded in 1801, the University of South Carolina-Columbia is the flagship campus of an eight-campus, fully accredited, state-supported system. USC­ Columbia has strong undergraduate and graduate programs and other highly regarded professional schools including: medicine, law, education, engineering, social work, pharmacy, public health, arts and sciences, nursing, and business administration. The University is a Carnegie Research I institution. Approximately 33,000 students are enrolled on the Columbia campus and more than 44,000 throughout the system. The City of Columbia is the state capital with a metropolitan area population of almost half a million. It is a state center of financial, transportation, and industrial development, and it has a rich historical and cultural tradition.  It is located within easy driving distance of both mountains and coast.


  • Participate in instruction, research, publication, grant writing, and other scholarly activities
  • Instruct undergraduate and graduate courses in both face-to-face as well as online environments in the areas of school librarianship and/or youth services
  • Mentor and advise graduate students
  • Provide service to the department, college, university, profession, and community

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Earned doctorate by time of appointment in library and information studies or related field
  • Ability to conduct scholarly research in the field
  • Ability to teach and mentor at the graduate level
  • Knowledge in creating educational materials for face-to-face and online instruction

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Teaching experience at the collegiate level
  • Teaching experience in an online or distance education environment
  • Active involvement in one or more professional organizations appropriate to area of expertise
  • Experience in management or teaching management courses
  • Experience in procuring grants or external funding

Applications and nominations are invited for this position available in August 2017. Salary is fully competitive. The Committee will begin full review of applications and nominations October 31, 2016 and will continue until the position is filled.

TO APPLY: Applicants should send a letter of application and a complete resume/CV including the names of three references to Ms. Angela Wright at slisadmn@mailbox.sc.edu or by mail to School of Library and Information Science, University of South Carolina, Davis College, 1501 Greene Street, Columbia, SC 29208.

For further information, questions, or to submit nominations, send an email to Dr. Heather Moorefield-Lang, Committee Chair at moorefield-lang@sc.edu or call at 803-777-0224

School Information is available at http://www.sc.edu/study/colleges_schools/cic/library_and_information_science

Minorities and women are encouraged to apply. The University of South Carolina is responsive to the needs of dual career couples.

The University of South Carolina is an equal opportunity institution.

[Be aware it may take the official university a couple of days to post the job and application information]

Faculty Positions: Seeking Geeks with Social Skills

img_0857Today we’re announcing a search for four new faculty positions at the University of South Carolina School of Library and Information Science (posts to follow). We are looking for three tenure track faculty and one instructor to be part of a growing program. The searches represent a continued commitment to librarianship and the School of Library and Information Science’s well-deserved reputation in youth services, school libraries, and doctoral study. However, these searches also represent a new strategy to ensure the values of librarianship (openness, learning, intellectual freedom & security, and intellectual honesty) spread throughout society.

We are looking to grow our undergraduate program in information science. In essence we are actively seeking geeks with social skills-in this case geeks being passionate people and social being social science. The future of librarianship depends not only in preparing leaders within libraries, but also in preparing the CIOs, mayors, principals, and trustees that will hire/manage/support tomorrow’s librarians. This means preparing, through undergraduate degrees and minors, information professionals that can sit at the intersection of technology, strategy, and people. These information scientists will bring a set of skills to this crucial intersection, as well as bringing values, ethics, and a mission based on improving society.

We are looking for diverse perspectives that represent the skills our students need, and the communities these future alumni will serve. Rather than seeking to solely train future librarians, we want to produce leaders and visionaries that will work with librarians and technologists, bankers and NGOs, entrepreneurs and activists to make real positive change in our communities.

Over the next several weeks and months, I will be announcing forums where the faculty, staff, and students of the University of South Carolina will be forging a school of thought around knowledge and impact. We are beginning a field-wide conversation on what comes after library schools and information schools: knowledge schools focused on impact and improving society.

All are invited to participate in this conversation, but right now I am looking for scholars (and yes, geeks of the highest order) that can help forge this new school of thought. You will be joining a dedicated corps of scholars, staff, and students with a history of seeking to change the world – through reading and data science; through maker spaces and image archives; through metadata and intellectual property; through graphic novels and knowledge management – not simply document it. You will be part of a growing program, at a growing university dedicated to crafting higher education for today and tomorrow.

[Be aware it may take the official university a couple of days to post the job and application information]

A Faculty of One: Navigating the Complexities of Interdisciplinary Work

“A Faculty of One: Navigating the Complexities of Interdisciplinary Work” Dominican University’s McGreal Lecture. Chicago, IL.

Abstract: A discussion of how institutional structures need to match a call for greater interdisciplinary faculty work. The case study of information science is given.

Slides: Lecture Slides
Video: https://www.google.com/url?hl=en&q=https://livestream.com/dominicanuniversity/mcgreal2016&source=gmail&ust=1473341215302000&usg=AFQjCNHlnQ_DX1x6attb8vTL0dJG93JCxw

Being Truthful, Not Neutral

[The following is a column I wrote for the College of Information & Communications eNews]

In a recent interview Christiane Amanpour of CNN challenged one of the underlying principles of both journalism and librarianship by calling upon journalists to be “truthful, not neutral.” She talked about how attempting to appear neutral can lead to the creation of false equivalencies, and it is better to be truthful, even if that appears to be taking sides. This idea of intellectual honesty is at the very core of scholarship as well. Scientists seek to apply objective methods in fields they are passionate about. It is not unusual to hear a chemist, a botanist or, indeed, an information scientist recall a story from their childhood that led them to academia and research.

These ideas are very much in the forefront of my thinking upon joining the University of South Carolina. The fact that the university is ranked as a top research institution and noted for community engagement was a major reason I chose to join the faculty. Good scholarship is instrumental in an ongoing effort to improve our communities and society as a whole. When a school, college or, indeed, a university is at its best, it provides an open and diverse platform for exploration. It is a place for undergraduates to learn and question everything. It is a place for professors to explore the reaches of the heavens and the extent of our humanity. It is a place where society can bring its thorniest problems for reflection and examination. A good university, like a good library, is a safe place to explore dangerous ideas.

This is certainly true of the College of Information and Communications. In our labs and classrooms, scholars, practitioners, staff and students all are continually learning to navigate the delicate route between a search for truth and a clarion call for action. A good librarian, a good journalist, a good information scientist are never neutral: they are principled. We prepare ourselves, our students and our communities not into an ideology, but a constant quest to do both well, and good. We prepare people for the job market, but also as citizens in a marketplace of ideas. We arm them not with ideology, but with perspective and healthy skepticism. And it is here that I must ask for your help.

I am convinced that the best learning happens in the richest information environment. Diversity is the key to both validity and social responsibility. As the new director of the School of Library and Information Science I need your help in building a diverse learning space. In the classroom and labs and the halls of Davis College the faculty and I seek to facilitate a rich tapestry of ideas and viewpoints. We need the experiences of alumni and practitioners. The faculty, staff, and students of the school need you to share your passion and your truths. A school, a college, a university, indeed every organization is a conversation. It is a series of voices seeking action and outcome, be it profit, or literacy, or valid study. In the fields of library and information science it is a conversation that started millennia ago with the first libraries in Mesopotamia and that continues today in the work of Google and the Library of Congress alike.

Be a part of that conversation. In the coming months keep an eye on the school website. We will be posting opportunities for speakers and projects. We plan on hosting get-togethers for alumni and partners across the state and the country. But you don’t have to wait to be asked. Find us in Davis College, or on the web, or social media.

Cocky Reads: Librarianship in Action

Cocky LogoAs you probably know by now, I’m headed to the University of South Carolina. I’m very much looking forward to joining the School of Library & Information Science as director. A lot of folks have asked me why South Carolina. The simple answer is the amazing staff, students, and faculty and their desire to make a difference. During my research and visits I was struck by good people doing good work to make a real difference in people’s lives. It really does represent information in action.

One very clear example of this is Cocky’s Reading Express. For the past 10 years the school has been teaming with the University of South Carolina’s athletic department to travel around the state promoting literacy. It has all the hallmarks of active community-based librarianship. Partnerships with schools and communities; going out to the community; and engaging people (kids and their parents) in learning.

There is a myth that active and innovative library service is all about technology, or only for a certain type of library institution. Cocky’s Reading Express demonstrates that good ideas grounded in the community can make a difference in a building or with a bus. Good librarianship can be about learning code or learning to read. Innovation doesn’t have to be about dollars and startups, it can be about tapping into community resources (a mascot, a place, students, community members) to make great things happen.

The program is currently looking for resources to expand and maintain the program. I am asking you to support the project and spread the word. Yes, I am asking you to support my new school, but I am asking because it is a good project that deserves attention and support.