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Bridging Knowledge: Supporting Indigenous Scholars into the Field of Librarianship

An IMLS grant funded project that will provide funding for 15 American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian graduate students to earn MLIS degrees in partnership with San Jose State University.

About Bridging Knowledge

On July 30, 2021, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) announced a $728,027 grant award to the Alaska Library Network, in partnership with the American Indian Library Association, the Alaska State Library, and San José State University.

Online MLIS Program

The three-year Bridging Knowledge project will provide financial and scaffolded student support to 15 American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian graduate students to earn a fully online Masters of Library and Information Science (MLIS) degree and an advanced certificate in strategic management of digital assets and services through San José State University, School of Information.

The grant will support the recruitment, training, and development of these Indigenous librarians and contribute to growing a diverse and skilled professional workforce.

Bridging Knowledge Information Session

A Bridging Knowledge Scholarship Information Session was held on October 20th at 1 pm (Alaska time). Bridging Knowledge program staff and SJSU iSchool Student Services staff shared information about this exciting IMLS-funded scholarship opportunity and the benefits of the 100% online ALA Accredited MLIS program at SJSU iSchool. View recording

Bridging Digital Practices with Traditional Knowledge

Graduates of this project will bridge contemporary digital practices with traditional knowledge, while allowing for culturally appropriate stewardship of sensitive materials. This project will make supplemental curriculum, presentations, and poster sessions featuring scholarship widely available through the Sustainable Heritage Network.

Support and Financial Assistance for Scholarship Recipients

Financial assistance will include:

  • Tuition & textbooks
  • Technology stipend
  • Internships
  • Professional development stipend
  • Travel stipend
  • Library association memberships

Recipients will benefit from:

  • Peer-to-peer support
  • Professional mentor
  • Quarterly webinars emphasizing Indigenous methodologies for culturally appropriate digital curation skills
  • Interaction with American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian leaders in the profession
  • Opportunities to present at professional conferences and write articles for SJSU Student Research Journal and state or regional library association newsletters


This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services RE-250081-OLS-21 .

Institute of Museum and Library Services