Facilitating Institutional Change Through Mentoring

Recent changes in organizational structure and institutional needs have prompted many libraries to hire and train for new types of positions to address institutional data needs, new modes of publishing, online learning, and research impact. Creating new cultures, while maintaining core values, presents a challenge that is best addressed by mentoring. This Webinar treats topics such as reinvigorating experienced professionals, acculturating new librarians, and facilitating change through focused mentoring efforts.

This webinar will offer strategies and insights regarding how to use mentoring to develop your library's faculty and staff; effect change at the organizational and institutional levels; and to energize and reinvest in your experienced professionals. You will hear from a new librarian who brings professional experience from another field, a department head leading experienced and new librarians in a new institutional structure, and a senior administrator providing mechanisms to further the careers and impact of new and experienced librarians.

With new types of librarians and other professional positions becoming more prevalent in academic libraries, there is a need to nurture a culture of building leaders while ensuring an environment of respect for traditional institutional values. New expertise, and ideas must be negotiated. Modern mentoring efforts addresses the whole library and not just individuals new to the profession and those who re experienced. 

Topics treated in this Webinar include:

  • Supporting diverse members of the profession in your library 
  • Negotiating buy-in for new skill sets and perspectives
  • Acting as a bridge between new librarian functions and organizational and larger institutional values
  • Promoting mentee(s) into leadership
  • Identifying your needs as mentee and getting the most out of professional relationships
  • Encouraging risk-taking and change

Learning Objectives

  • New library professionals will learn effective ways of communicating their vision to gain collegial and institutional support  
  • Managers and department heads will learn strategies for bridging the gap between the organization and new librarians
  • Administrators will hear strategies for systematic ways of creating renewed interest in experienced librarians and engaging those librarians in the institution

Who Should Attend

Administrators, Managers, Department Heads, New Librarians, Mentors and new librarians and professional staff


Rita Smith: Professor and Executive Associate Dean at University of Tennessee Libraries. Her responsibilities are for administrative functions in the UT Libraries including budget, facilities, personnel, assessment, marketing, and information services. Rita’s early career centered on public services and instruction and she was named Head, Reference and Instructional Services in the UT Libraries in the late nineties. In recent years, Rita has taken a leading role in transforming environments and spaces at the UT Libraries by building key partnerships and encouraging innovation.

Teresa Walker: Associate Professor and Head, Learning, Research, and Engagement at the University of Tennessee Libraries. Teresa leads a department of library faculty and staff in conceptualizing and implementing research and instructional services. She is responsible for leadership for traditional and emerging forms of reference service, and for guiding an evolving program of research services at all levels throughout the greater university community. Her research interests focus on the role of the library in student success and retention.

Ingrid Ruffin: Ingrid is a current 2012-2014 UT Libraries Diversity Resident. She has planned the Big Orange STEM Symposium: High School Outreach organizer and 2011 Un-Hushed: Speaking Up in the Library Profession (a conference for graduate students and new LIS professionals). Ingrid has 9 years of United States Air Force (USAF) Experience including 6 years supervisor experience training and supporting unit members to accomplish organizational and personal/ professional goals.


How to Register

Register online


Questions about your registration should be directed to registration@ala.org. Technical questions about the webinar should be directed to Andrea Hill, RUSA Web Manager, at ahill@ala.org.

Thank you and we look forward to your participation!