For immediate release | July 22, 2014

Shawna Manchakowsky wins student stipend for YALSA’s Young Adult Literature Symposium

CHICAGO – Shawna Manchakowsky, a student at the University of Alberta, has won the 2014 Young Adult Literature Symposium student stipend from the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA).

“I want young adults to feel that the library is a safe place to be, where questions can be asked without ridicule and where they are welcomed and celebrated for their diversity,” Manchakowsky wrote in her application.

Manchakowsky applied for the scholarship to further her knowledge. “I have heard the theoretical; now I want to be immersed in the practical by learning from librarians.”

Tami Oliphant, a professor at University of Alberta’s School of Information and Library Science, recommended Manchakowsky for the stipend. She highlighted many aspects of Manchakowsky’s work, including creating a book club, serving on the Young Reader’s Choice Award and even creating an original score inspired by books studied in class.

“Shawna is a self-starter who is passionate about YA literature and youth services librarianship,” Oliphant wrote. “Not only will attendance at the lit Symposium be beneficial to Shawna’s future career, she is the kind of person who will want to share her experiences in a way that is useful to others.”

The Young Adult Literature Symposium will be held Nov. 14–16, at the Hyatt Regency Austin in Austin, Texas. The 2014 theme is “Keeping it Real: Finding the True Teen Experience in YA Literature.” To read program descriptions, download the preliminary program, find out how to reserve a hotel room and see the full list of registration rates, visit Join the conversation online with the hashtag #yalit14.

For more than 50 years, YALSA has worked to build the capacity of libraries and librarians to engage, serve and empower teens. For more information about YALSA or to access national guidelines and other resources go to, or contact the YALSA office by phone, (800) 545-2433, ext. 4390, or email,


Anna Lam

Program Coordinator

Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA)