The following is a guest post by John O’Connor, Program Assistant at the Library of Congress’s Office of Strategic Initiatives.
In April, the Office of Strategic Initiatives hosted a discussion panel on the creation of a curriculum for the new National Digital Stewardship Residency. The NDSR is a new partner venture between the Library of Congress and the Institute of Museum and Library Services wherein recent Master’s-level graduates will acquire the knowledge and skills involved in the selection, management, and long-term preservation of digital assets.
As a part of the program, eight residents will be placed at the Library of Congress and other Washington, D.C. area cultural heritage institutions for extended residencies during which they will complete a project related to digital stewardship. This residency program will serve as an innovative model for new professionals to obtain a detailed, hands-on experience working alongside expert practitioners in the field; it will introduce a set of talented future leaders to the information and cultural heritage professions. For more information on the creation of the residency, please see the earlier post about the program’s launch.
The NDSR curriculum panel included deans and professors from a number of iSchools and library and information science programs, as well as directors and representatives from multiple cultural heritage and digital stewardship organizations from across the nation. The expert panel designed numerous pieces of the residency program, including the framework for an intensive, two-week immersion workshop at the beginning of the residency that will teach the core competencies of digital stewardship. An additional idea that came out of the meeting included having a capstone week at the end of the term at which residents will present their projects to fellow residents, Library and IMLS staff, host institutions and members of the digital stewardship community. The panel also proposed a series of events and continuing education opportunities to take place during the six months including expert speakers, online and social media projects by residents, and tours of organizations in the Washington, D.C. area currently involved in digital stewardship activities.
Beyond developing a curriculum, panel members helped define other program elements including qualities of potential residents and host sites, the characteristics of successful digital projects, and additional tools and ideas to help foster a community of residents and mentors. Panel members will continue to be a valuable part of the NDSR’s development and will be involved in ongoing work to build an innovative initiative to support the education and growth of the next generation of digital stewardship professionals.
We would love to hear feedback or question about the NDSR, so please post comments!
Typo corrected, 5/2/2012.