Mary C. E. Franks Selected as the 2021 ALA Century Scholarship Recipient

For Immediate Release
Thu, 09/23/2021


Kimberly L. Redd

Program Manager, Certification and Talent Development

Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment (HRDR)


The American Library Association (ALA) has selected Mary C. E. Franks of Liberty, Maine as the 2021 Century Scholarship recipient.


The $2,500 scholarship funds services or accommodation for a library school student with disabilities admitted to an ALA-accredited library program.


Franks’ commitment to library service is longstanding. In high school, she volunteered at her local public library working with children. Throughout her undergraduate program, she held various positions in the campus library. Franks says, “It was at the library that I experienced the beauty of librarianship.” She believes that “the librarian plays an integral role in the growth of individuals, providing opportunities for their future by helping to strengthen their minds.” She has personally benefited from library services and hopes to “spend her life working in such an honorable field.”


Franks impressed her references with her critical thinking skills and quest for knowledge. One person noted that Franks “asks insightful questions, challenges ideas she thinks are flawed, and yet never loses her sense of humor. Her intellect, academic record, personal qualities, and strong interest in librarianship suggest she will be an asset to the profession.” Another person commented that “Franks’ intellectual curiosity is insatiable. Her work ethic is exceptional. She is a creative, lively, interesting young woman. She is an independent thinker and a conscientious worker who takes advantage of learning opportunities with a passion. She is devoted to learning and to the work of libraries. Her wide-ranging qualities suggest she will succeed in the library profession.”


Franks attends the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


For information on the ALA Scholarship program, visit our scholarship page.


The ALA Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment (HRDR) manages the ALA Scholarship Clearinghouse.