OpenCon Scholarships

OpenCon is a community of early career professionals and students from across the world working to create an open system for research and education. The annual conference provides an opportunity for the next generation of open practitioners and researchers to gather together and learn about key issues impacting scholarly and scientific research, educational materials, and digital research data. Conference attendees will develop the critical skills necessary to catalyze action toward a more open system for sharing the world’s information. ACRL provides scholarship funding for two librarians to attend OpenCon each year.


  • Scholarship funding to attend OpenCon (includes registration, lodging, and flight*)
  • Two-year appointment to ACRL’s Research and the Scholarly Environment Committee (ReSEC)
  • Opportunity to publish a conference reflection in the C&RL News scholarly communication column
  • Access to an international network of advocates and scholars

* Please note that registration includes most meals and transportation from the hotel to the conference. It does not cover incidental expenses, including transportation to and from the airport, meals outside the conference, travel insurance, and other expenses.

What Participants Are Saying

“Attending OpenCon connected me to peers working in the field of open education around the world and also helped me to connect my day-to-day work with much larger themes in the world of open, such as open science and open pedagogy. It was a rare, valuable, and stimulating opportunity for a community college librarian, with most of my work on the local and regional levels. The ideas and connections I experienced at OpenCon help me better serve the students and faculty on my campus.”

— Tim Dolan, Greenfield Community College

Scholarship Eligibility

Additional Selection Priorities

Application materials should demonstrate a commitment to advancing Open Access, Open Education, and/or Open Data and should describe how a current project or campaign can be improved or actualized by participation at OpenCon. Additionally, the selection committee will prioritize the following criteria:

  • First-time OpenCon attendees
  • Applicants from traditionally under-resourced institutions
  • Applicants who serve traditionally underserved populations
  • Applicants from minority groups historically underrepresented in librarianship
  • Applicants who demonstrate the capacity to proactively contribute to ACRL’s scholarly communication initiatives
  • Applicants whose career objectives, current roles, and aspirations align with the mission of OpenCon

How to Apply

Follow the provided instructions for completing an OpenCon application. If you are chosen to participate in OpenCon and are an ACRL member, you will be considered for an ACRL-sponsored scholarship. Your information will be conveyed to a group of ACRL member leaders for review and selection. Applicants are encouraged to review the OpenCon FAQ before applying. Please list ACRL in the affiliation section of the application.


July 13, 2018 Applications due by 11:59 U.S. Pacific Time
August 2018 ReSEC reviews eligible applications
September 2018 Scholarship recipients notified of acceptance
November 2-4, 2018 Recipients attend OpenCon

Previous Recipients


  • Debbie Feisst, Public Services Librarian,  University of Alberta
  • Willa Liburd Tavernier,  Open Scholarship Resident Librarian, Indiana University Bloomington


  • Tatiana Bryant, Digital Projects and Engagement Librarian, University of Oregon
  • Cynthia Orozco, Librarian for Equitable Services, East Los Angeles College


  • Tim Dolan, Scholarly Communication Librarian,  Greenfield Community College
  • Michelle Reed, Open Education Librarian, University of Texas at Arlington

Recipient Reflections

Feisst, D., & Tavernier, W. (2019). OpenCon 2018: Building a community of openness, advocacy, and activism. College & Research Libraries News, 80(3), 134-136.

Reed, M. (2017, June 29). Building community: Reflections on conference going [blog post].


ACRL’s OpenCon scholarships support the active participation of ACRL members in initiatives that empower librarians to engage in open practices that advance library and information science. The scholarships support ACRL’s strategic plan and its 2016 Policy Statement on Open Access to Scholarship by Academic Libraries by enhancing members’ capacity to address scholarly communication issues and influence policies and practices toward more open and equitable systems.

More Information

Contact Kara Malenfant with questions at