Congratulations to the 2022-24 Recipients, Hugh Paterson III and Jamie Flood
About the Scholarship
The Paul Evan Peters Scholarship* was established to honor and perpetuate the memory of Paul Evan Peters (1947-1996), founding executive director of the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI). The scholarship will assist students pursuing graduate studies in the information sciences, librarianship, or closely related field, that advance the frontiers of digital information and technology. Nominees should demonstrate intellectual and personal qualities consistent with those of Paul Evan Peters, including:
- A commitment to the use of digital information and advanced technology to enhance scholarship, intellectual productivity, and public life
- An interest in the civic responsibilities of information professionals, and a commitment to democratic values
- A positive and creative approach to overcoming personal, technological, and bureaucratic challenges
- Humor, vision, humanity, and imagination
Two awards were made in 2022:
- One to a doctoral student in the amount of $5,000 per year, awarded two consecutive years.
- One to a master’s student in the amount of $2,500 per year, awarded two consecutive years.
Scholarships are awarded biennially to students pursuing graduate degrees in librarianship, the information sciences, or closely related field (see Eligibility Requirements).
*Prior to 2023, the PEP Scholarship was called the PEP Fellowship.
Scholarship applicants will be judged on how well they meet the academic and personal standards for the award, not on financial need. In addition, applications must meet these criteria:
- Each applicant must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident of the United States.
- Each applicant must be entering or enrolled in a master’s or doctoral program in information science or librarianship at an accredited U.S. university, or a program that has received American Library Association (ALA) accreditation (including reciprocal), or one that is a member of the iSchools iCaucus. Students in other, closely related disciplines may also be considered, provided that the course of study relates directly to information management/studies.
- Staff, officers, and families of the Coalition for Networked Information, the Association of Research Libraries, and EDUCAUSE are not eligible to apply.
If awarded the scholarship, recipients must complete at least 6 credit hours of coursework per semester during the year(s) the scholarship is awarded. Recipients must submit an official transcript to the selection committee at the end of the first year of the award (no later than July 1), demonstrating good progress toward the graduate degree. The selection committee retains the right to terminate the award after one year if good progress is not demonstrated.
Completed applications must include:
- A completed application form (for EITHER master’s OR doctoral students), which includes space for a 300-500-word essay explaining the applicant’s qualifications, intellectual interests, and academic and career objectives. The essay must include a discussion of how the applicant will advance scholarship in digital information and technology and apply his or her knowledge to problems of scholarship, intellectual productivity, or public life.
- A curriculum vitae or resume that includes the applicant’s complete contact information: address, phone number, and email.
In addition to the online form, applicants must submit:
- Two letters of recommendation from faculty members, work supervisors, or others who can comment on the applicant’s academic and personal qualifications for the scholarship.
Finalists will be notified and asked to submit:
- A copy of the student’s letter of acceptance into a university graduate program in information science or librarianship, or a closely related field (see eligibility requirements).
- Proof of U.S. citizenship or permanent residency (a photocopy of a birth certificate, passport, or residency card).
- An official transcript may also be requested if the applicant has already completed courses toward the graduate degree.
A selection committee organized by the staff of the Coalition for Networked Information will review applications.
The Award’s Impact: Comments and Updates from Scholarship Recipients
Jen Liu received the 2020 award for doctoral students while at Cornell University. The award has supported her research on examining the ecological, political, and social implications of technologies such as digital agriculture. She is currently completing her dissertation work on the impact of climate change on Internet infrastructures in coastal communities.
Jake Tompkins, who received the 2020 award for master’s students, completed his MLIS degree from UCLA in 2021. The fellowship helped garner attention on his Rebel Archives in the Golden Gulag project about incarceration during COVID-19, which inspired him to continue diving deeper into crisis informatics research. After graduation, he joined the United Nations Department of Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance as a data visualization and design intern.
Laima Augustitis, the 2018 master’s award recipient, completed her thesis about facilitators, barriers, and potential future directions for online transgender health information seeking while at the University of Michigan. This work followed her summer internship with an IT firm in Seoul, South Korea.
Kristen Matteucci received the 2016 award for master’s students, completed her degree from Rutgers University in 2018, and joined the Jenkins Law Library.
Jordan Eschler, who received the 2014 Peters Fellowship for doctoral students while a student at the University of Washington’s Information School, used the award to design and execute research that she then presented at conferences. The award supported the research work itself, as well as travel to the events.
Olivia Dorsey received the master’s level fellowship in 2014 while she was a Masters Information Science student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has developed several projects at the intersection of Black History, genealogy, and technology, including Franklin Memories, a communal repository of her own family history, and Digital Black History, a searchable directory of digital Black History projects. You can learn more about her personal projects at OliviaPeacock.com. Professionally, she works at the Library of Congress as an Innovation Specialist on the Computing Cultural Heritage in the Cloud initiative.
Jessica A. Koepfler received the Peters fellowship in 2010 while a doctoral student in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. She completed her degree in 2014 and then served as Managing Director at Intuitive Company, a user-centered research, design, and development firm. Koepfler commented, “The fellowship provided a source of funding that allowed me to commit myself to a ‘fringe’ topic like the study of values within the context of homelessness… The award … put a spotlight on me early on in my program, which had the snowball effect of people noticing me… I am truly grateful for the fellowship and credit it with being very instrumental to me particularly in those early years of my PhD program.”
“The characteristics that have often been associated with Paul—positivity, creativity, humor, vision, humanity, and imagination—are, I hope, dimensions that I also bring to the work that I do as a scholar and as a teacher,” wrote Philip Edwards, 2004 fellowship recipient while at the University of Washington’s Information School. Edwards credits the award with helping to broaden his professional horizons as a student.
Christopher (Cal) Lee, who received the first Peters Fellowship, is currently a Professor at the School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he teaches a variety of subjects, including archival administration, records management, digital curation, understanding information technology for managing digital collections, and the construction of digital repository rules. At the time of the award, Lee was in the doctoral program at the University of Michigan School of Information.
The Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) is a joint program of the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and EDUCAUSE that promotes the use of information technology to advance scholarship and education. Over 200 institutions representing higher education, publishing, information technology, scholarly and professional organizations, foundations, and libraries and library organizations make up CNI’s members. Learn more at www.cni.org.
EDUCAUSE is a community of IT leaders and professionals working together to tackle challenges and leverage opportunities that are constantly evolving within higher education. EDUCAUSE welcomes diversity, in viewpoints and experience, and believes in the transformative power of uncommon thinking for the common good. Visit www.educause.edu.