[Library Media] ILEAD USA Update

Matt McLain mmclain at utah.gov
Wed Nov 21 11:16:43 MST 2012

Hi Utah Librarians,

By now, I hope you have had a chance to consider applying with a team,
being a team mentor, or participating as an instructor for ILEAD USA. If
you are still considering ILEAD USA, I'd like to share my experience with
you (see below). If you have any questions at all please contact me and I
will be happy to answer them.

Need a team? Please visit http://bit.ly/ileadusautah and fill out the form
on the front page. I'll add you to the Google Docs page of others looking
for a team. Applications to participate are also available through that

Have questions? Join me during the State Library's December 6 "Thursday
Online" at 1:30 pm for a half hour to ask any questions you'd like. You can
access the webinar at http://stateofutah.adobeconnect.com/usltraining/. It
will also be archived.

Experience ILEAD U! You can view videos and sessions associated with the
ILEAD U program during the first two years (2010 and 2011) by going to
YouTube's ILEADUSA video channel at

Don't forget: Applications are due to me by December 14.

Feel free to share this email with anyone you feel would be a candidate to
experience ILEAD USA.

Matt McLain
ILEAD USA Utah Project Coordinator
Utah State Library
mmclain at utah.gov
(801) 715-6742

In 2011, IMLS expanded the original ILEAD U grant, and asked the Illinois
State Library to include librarians from other state libraries in order to
duplicate ILEAD U across the country. Librarians from Arkansas, Colorado,
Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Montana, New Jersey, Ohio, South
Carolina, Tennessee, and Utah (me) participated in the three sessions. The
Illinois State Library did not change their program to include these
additional libraries. Instead, they decided to let it happen organically.
While this proved challenging, especially during the first session,
ultimately it allowed us to sample and participate in almost every aspect
of the workshops: planning, participation, instruction, mentoring, and

During the first session in March, each team was asked to create a video
describing their project, which would be viewed by everyone in attendance
on the third day. During the first two days, keynote speakers presented
topics on 21st Century Librarianship, the importance of libraries adapting
and changing, and the future of libraries, including a marriage of
technology with every other aspect of libraries. We also attended break-out
sessions which included topics on digitization, working with the community,
community assessment, copyright, using video editing software, and Q&A

After the daily sessions were over, the teams spent the evenings completing
their videos. This was a challenging prospect: bringing five librarians
from different communities together to determine one need and one project,
then putting the videos together with everyone's unique skills was very
difficult and stressful. Creating a video with the ten librarians from
different states proved nearly impossible, particularly since we really had
no real conception of what we were doing. In the end, however, we produced
our video describing what we each were hoping to accomplish by
participating in ILEAD U. It turned out to be a very good team building and
leadership experience.

The June session dealt with technology, sampling what is possible in
libraries, and creating experiences the participants may not have otherwise
had. In addition to keynotes from leading librarians in the field, we had
the opportunity to play with resources for content management, LAMP (Linux,
Apache, MySQL, PHP) and website creation, technology planning, using
webinars for training, developing apps on the Android and Apple platforms,
Drupal, Wordpress, podcasting, and social media. There was also a lot of
discussion about "epic failure" as part of the learning process, which
really meant "dive in and get your hands dirty." In the end, this is where
I learned that ILEAD U was not about the end product, but the journey to
try, experience, build, and reassess. The second session was purposefully
designed to challenge and allow for experimentation with new technology,
especially to provide new experiences and learn how these technologies
apply to libraries.

The final session in October was about assessment, project design and
redesign, statistical analysis, and grantwriting. We had another keynote
session to re-motivate us and keep us excited about the future. Each team
presented their projects to the rest of the group to much fanfare and
anticipation. The projects were a fantastic starting point, and I know
everyone in the room was excited to take the new things they learned back
to their libraries.

One of the most important aspects of the program is not the actual final
project, it's the journey getting there. Many of the Illinois projects have
ended--and several were not completed in the first place. But ILEAD USA is
an excellent opportunity to be "in the lab" and try and experience.
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