ALA announces NASA @ your libraryTM

Contact: Linda Mays

800-545-2433, Ext. 1398

ALA News Release

For Immediate Release

December 2001

ALA announces NASA @ your library™

The American Library Association (ALA) is pleased to announce NASA @ your library™, a three-year program launching this month, developed by the Office of Biological and Physical Research, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the Development Office of ALA. The goals of the program are to drive participation at libraries, raise awareness and interest in science, encourage young people to pursue careers in science, and increase the visibility of NASA programs and many of their findings.

As part of NASA @ your library, ALA and NASA will develop collaboratively a program to share and promote fascinating scientific information on NASA research and will demonstrate the expertise of librarians in selecting excellent books and materials to get children and adults excited about how space research affects their lives. A program-specific Web site and traveling exhibit will be developed, and six library sites will be selected as models. The traveling interactive exhibit will spend a month at libraries across the country and will have special presentations specifically created to draw members of the community such as homemakers, health care professionals, environmental/agricultural enthusiasts, and industrial executives. Participating libraries will receive a small incentive grant to implement the program.

"Through NASA @ your library, we will send a strong message that both public libraries and NASA have a wealth of information freely available for all citizens," said ALA President John W. Berry. "Libraries bring you a world of resources."

ALA and NASA also will develop an action kit for distribution to public libraries, a poster, guidelines for expansion of library collections to support the NASA Web site and exhibit, activities through programs at the public library to encourage more young people to think about becoming scientists, and program training for librarians and others through in-person training and Web-based continuing education courses. A national advisory committee will be appointed, and the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of ALA, will manage the grant.

"Libraries can help NASA take the excitement and potential of space research occurring 200 miles above the Earth to every person in every community across America," said Dr. Kathie L. Olsen, NASA's Associate Administrator of Biological and Physical Research. "Young Americans across the country will be able to identify new career opportunities, and citizens in every community will glimpse how the same science that will take us beyond the planet could transform every American's future on the planet. We are very excited to extend our message along with ALA's through NASA @ your library."

The ALA, founded in 1876, is the oldest, largest and most influential library association in the world. @ your library™, The Campaign for America's Libraries, is a five-year public education effort sponsored by the ALA to speak loudly and clearly about the value of libraries and librarians in the 21st century. 3M Library Systems, the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, Major League Baseball, Morningstar Foods Inc., maker of Hershey's Milk, and Women's Day are founding partners of the initiative.

Founded in 1958, NASA is a leading force in scientific research and in stimulating public interest in aerospace exploration, as well as science and technology in general. NASA's Office of Biological and Physical Research (OBPR) conducts peer-reviewed, interdisciplinary, fundamental and applied research to address the opportunities and challenges to NASA that are provided by the space environment and the human exploration of space.

For more information about NASA @ your library™, please contact Linda Mays at 312-280-1398. For more information about The Campaign for America's Libraries, please contact Deborah Davis at 312-280-2148. For more information on NASA's Office of Biological and Physical Research, see