ProQuest was proud to award the 2014 Roger K. Summit Scholarship to Erin Zerhusen, an MLIS student at the University of Maryland. The scholarship – named in honor of Dialog founder Roger K. Summit, a pioneer in developing online information retrieval services – received a record number of applicants in 2014. It will be presented June 10 at the Special Libraries Association annual conference in Vancouver.
"Our selection committee conducted a thorough review of more than 80 quality applicants and narrowed the field to 15 finalists," said Maria Ziemer, Global Manager of the ProQuest Graduate Education Program. "Erin stood out to us for her dedication to making electronic information services accessible to all users. She’s setting a goal for which we should all strive. Her work in developing digitisation, privacy and accessibility policies makes her an ideal candidate and an innovative and forward thinking information professional."
Ms. Zerhusen is focusing her graduate work on the study of information accessibility by diverse populations and the curation and management of digital assets. Her post-graduation intent is to combine these two areas to help ensure the digital realm provides greater and more equitable information access for people worldwide.
"It is abundantly clear that the digital world is currently widening the gap between 'the haves' and 'the have nots'," said Ms. Zerhusen. "This is more than just a concern for me. I am passionate about supplying information and creating tools for greater digital access while ensuring that digital accessibility is considered when these tools are created, presented, updated, and preserved."
Ms. Zerhusen credits her undergraduate training in history (received at Washington University in St. Louis) as inspiring a deep interest in how the information field can improve availability to resources that challenge perceptions. "In my MLS coursework, and in the various internships I have pursued since attending the University of Maryland, I am constantly confronted by the power of the digital realm to provide information, teach lessons, and deliver tools to its users," she says.
The Roger K. Summit Scholarship is awarded annually to a graduate student enrolled in an accredited library or information sciences program. Scholarship winners must demonstrate understanding of digital information services, academic achievement, and interest in the field of electronic information services.
The scholarship is part of ProQuest’s Graduate Education Program (GEP) for Library and Information Sciences. The GEP program encompasses the full range of ProQuest products, including ProQuest Dialog and the new ProQuest research environment, and provides free access for classroom use by qualifying programs.
For more information about the Roger K. Summit scholarship, visit the web page.