The University Record, December 13, 1999

SI offers travel stipends to service-minded prospective students

By Nancy Ross-Flanigan
News and Information Services

From helping create online neighborhood photo directories to organizing archives of the Pan Africanist Congress in South Africa, School of Information (SI) graduate students are good at finding ways to merge their techno know-how with community service. Prospective graduate students with similar ambitions are invited to apply for travel stipends to attend a special Visiting Day, Jan. 22. Thirty stipends of up to $500 each will be awarded to qualified students to help cover expenses of traveling to and staying in Ann Arbor.

During Visiting Day, prospective students will learn about the Community Information Corps, an interdisciplinary group dedicated to using new technology to help build communities and achieve social change. With the support of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the School recently established the Corps to work with nonprofit organizations. Students from all SI master’s degree specializations—information economics, management and policy; human-computer interaction; archives and records management; and library and information services—can participate in the Corps.

“A growing number of our students engage in projects and explore careers that put information to work for public purposes,” says Prof. Paul Resnick, Corps coordinator. “We welcome students with a proven commitment to community service and activism.”

In the past two years alone, SI students have conducted cultural heritage preservation workshops on Native American reservations, developed software to aid data sharing among human service organizations, created digital collections of cultural heritage materials and prototyped software for electronic grocery ordering in low-income neighborhoods.

Resnick envisions graduates taking jobs with community technology and media centers, nonprofit technology assistance providers, public libraries, museums, commercial and nonprofit local information providers, government agencies, international development organizations, foundations and entrepreneurial social ventures.

An online application for the travel stipends is available at www.si.umich.edu/cic. The application deadline is Dec. 15. For additional information on Visiting Day, call Jay Jackson, 763-0074, or Kara Goldhamer, 615-3152.

For information on the Corps, send e-mail to si.cic.info@umich.edu or call 763-2285.