Category: SLIS News

2023 SLIS Book Bonanza for the Black Belt (and Beyond) Book Give Away Program is Accepting Applications from School Libraries

In March 2023, the School of Library and Information Studies @ The University of Alabama will award brand new children’s and teen books to at least four public school libraries in the Black Belt region of the state and two school libraries in an economically deprived area of Alabama outside of the Black Belt Region via the SLIS Book Bonanza for the Black Belt (and Beyond) program.

School Librarians in the Black Belt counties of Alabama and other economically disadvantaged areas of the state are encouraged to apply for free books that will be awarded by Dr. Jamie C. Naidoo, Professor and Interim Director at The University of Alabama School of Library and Information Studies.

Interested school librarians can download and complete the application sheet and email it to SLIS children’s literacy graduate assistant Kim Rogers at with “Book Bonanza” in the subject line or fax it to (205) 348-3746. Applications should be received no later than midnight on February 28, 2023. Applications are available on the program website: . Note there is a separate application for public schools in the Black Belt Region of the state and another application for low-income schools outside the Black Belt region of the state (as well as private schools in the Black Belt region).

On March 21st, a total of 6 winning school libraries will be selected. Each winning school library will receive over $3000 worth of free NEW children’s and/or young adult books. Once notified, school librarians will coordinate with representatives from the School of Library and Information Studies at The University of Alabama to acquire their books.

Launched in 2009 by Dr. Jamie Naidoo, the SLIS Book Bonanza for the Black Belt is an annual program that provides free books to school libraries in the Black Belt region each academic year.  In March 2022, the program donated over $38,300 in new books to elementary, middle, and high school libraries in Alabama.  If you need additional information about the program, please visit the program website

2023 LibLearnX Conference – SLIS Alumni Reception

If you are planning on attending the LibLearnX conference in New Orleans, LA, or will be in the area, please join Dr. Jamie Naidoo, Dr. Steven Yates, and Joi Mahand for the SLIS alumni reception on January 28, 2023 from 6:30-8:30pm at Legacy Kitchen’s Craft Tavern. We would love to connect with the amazing alumni, friends, and colleagues of SLIS!

Please see the attached invitation for reception details:

Congratulations December 2022 SLIS Graduates!

We are so proud of our December 2022 SLIS graduates! Wishing you all the best in the next chapter of your lives.

Amanda Arrington
Tara Bain
Lindsay Ball
Elizabeth “Hope” Chandler
Jencey Gortney
Crystal Hooper
Kathleen “Katie” Hughes
Alyx Kim-Yohn
Courtney Kleftis
Evan Leavitt
Amanda Lofgren-Smith
Christopher Mahan
Allison Mansour

Riley McCabe
Larissa Orman
Meredith Ramella
Nina Siso
Lissa “Raven” Smith
Melanie Smith
Bryan Tidwell
Moe Weinman
Blake Wilhelm
Alexandria N. Williams
Caitlin Williams
Caitlin Wright-Aplin

Photos courtesy of Dr. Yates.

Seasons Change, People Change

SLIS Program Assistant Kim Gilbert is leaving us to move on to greener pastures with a promotion at UA. Kim will be the new Administrative Specialist for Capstone International. Her last day at SLIS is November 11th.  

On November 28th, SLIS will welcome our new Program Assistant Beth Sheehan where she will work with the administrative team to oversee day-to-day operations in the SLIS office. Beth is an artist active in the fields of printmaking, papermaking, and book arts. She holds a BFA from Memphis College of Art and a Certificate in Book Arts from The Center for Book Arts in New York, NY. Her work has been exhibited internationally and is held in several public collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Center for Book Arts, and the San Francisco Public Library. She also co-authored the book Bookforms: A Complete Guide to Designing and Crafting Hand-Bound Books, 2019. Most recently, Beth worked as an Office Associate for the UA Art and Art History Department for just under two years.  

Joi Mahand will also join SLIS on November 28th as our new Assistant Director of Academic Programs. She will be actively engaging with prospective, new, and current students at SLIS in her new role. Joi graduated from Berra College with a B.S. in Business Management and obtained her MLIS from SLIS. She has worked as a public Librarian for in the Jefferson County Library Cooperative in the greater Birmingham, AL area, specializing in teen and adult services. Joi uses her positive attitude and love for libraries to encourage others. In her free time, she reads voraciously and loves to sing. Perhaps she’ll include singing as part of her recruitment pitch for our SLIS degree programs!

When Halloween was on a Monday!

SLIS students celebrated by dressing up and bringing themed treats to class. Little did they know Dean Butler would also be stopping by with candy for a fun photo op!