For immediate release | March 25, 2013

2013 ACRL STS Oberly Award goes to Scholl, Paster and team

CHICAGO – Jan Scholl and Amy Paster of Penn State University, along with their team, have been selected as the 2013 recipients of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) Science and Technology Section (STS) Oberly Award for Bibliography in the Agricultural or Natural Sciences for their 4-H and Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) research databases.

The cash award and plaque will be presented to the team during the 2013 ALA Annual Conference in Chicago.

“The Youth Development 4-H database provides access to the breadth of Extension and experiment station research for 4-H programs, which are a hallmark of youth education across the country,” said award co-chairs, Elizabeth Berman of the University of Vermont and Rachel Borchardt of American University. “This database represents a very rich set of information that researchers can employ in their own states and programs, and its significance is telling by its wide use both nationally and internationally.”

These three databases contain a collection of citations relating to the fields of 4-H and youth development – one database for graduate and undergraduate studies, another with state, national and experiment station research and the third, the EFNEP database, is a similar database within the field of food and nutrition education. They include 4-H studies from 1911 to present and the EFNEP database from the more than 40 years it has been in existence. The databases are updated monthly.

Scholl is the 4-H curriculum specialist and associate professor in the Agricultural, Economics, Sociology and Education (AESE) Department and the College of Agricultural Sciences. Her 4-H work is part of Penn State Cooperative Extension. Paster is head of the Life Sciences Library and associate librarian in the Penn State University Libraries. Others who have been involved with the project are David Abler of By the Numbers (and professor in the AESE Department); Bruce Grinder, IT support specialist in the College of Agricultural Sciences; and Melanie Gardner, AgNIC Program at the National Agricultural Library.

Representing the Penn State University Libraries are Helen Smith, Linda Klimczyk, Sherry Lonsdale and Wayne Ellenberger. Suzanne LeMenestral and Helen Chipman, national 4-H and EFNEP program leaders at USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, continue to publicize the program nationally.

The databases were created to support and further Cooperative Extension 4-H and EFNEP programs and research. The 4-H and EFNEP databases are both freely available online.

The team has also received one of the four USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture national awards given in 2011 and the Internet Education Award by the National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences in 2012.

The Oberly Award was established in 1923 in memory of Eunice Rockwood Oberly, librarian of the Bureau of Plant Industry, United States Department of Agriculture from 1908 to 1921. She was the Bureau of Plant Industry's representative to the Congressional Joint Commission on Reclassification of Government Employees and was instrumental in gaining a fairer recognition of library activities. This biennial award is given in odd-numbered years for the best English-language bibliography in the field of agriculture or a related science.


ACRL is a division of the American Library Association, representing more than 12,000 academic and research librarians and interested individuals. ACRL is the only individual membership organization in North America that develops programs, products and services to meet the unique needs of academic and research librarians. Its initiatives enable the higher education community to understand the role that academic libraries play in the teaching, learning and research environments. ACRL is on the Web at, Facebook at and Twitter at @ala_acrl.


David Free

Mktg & Comm. Specialist/Editor-in-Chief

Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL)

1-800-545-2433 ext.2517