Librarians from TCUs Formalize Association

Feb 15th, 2005 | By | Category: 16-3: Indigenizing Education, Tribal College News
By Holly Ristau

Librarians meeting in Bozeman, MT, for their annual institute last June decided to form an association, the Tribal College and University Library Association. The tribal college librarians had been associating with one another through annual meetings and training institutes for many years, and they also communicate regularly through an email list serve.

In its first formal actions, the association adopted a mission statement and passed a resolution seeking financial support for the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC) Virtual Library. The virtual library provides guided access to resources on the World Wide Web as well as access to various expensive databases, but the grant funding for it has expired (see TCJ, Vol. 15, N.4).

Hosted by Kathy Kaya and Mary Anne Hanson of the University of Montana, Bozeman, the librarians’ annual professional development institute provided training on accessing digital resources, copyright issues, using electronic census information, and getting reliable statistics from the internet. The librarians also learned more about map collections, internships at the Library of Congress, information literacy, and recognizing learning styles.

Since some colleges are designing new libraries, the participants traded ideas about effective designs. Last year’s participants included 40 librarians from 34 tribal colleges across the United States and Canada.

Holly Ristau is the archivist and librarian at White Earth Tribal and Community College. For more information about the association, contact her at


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