Smithville's cooperative humanities project 'Enriching Education' wins 2015 Loleta D. Fyan Award

For Immediate Release
Tue, 03/31/2015


Norman Rose

Program Officer



CHICAGO — The American Library Association has awarded the 2015 Loleta D. Fyan Award to the Smithville Public Library’s project, “Enriching Education: Joining the Humanities with the Community of Learners.”

The Smithville Public Library, located in rural Texas, proposed an innovative program based on partnerships with local nonprofit organizations and the local school district to ensure that students are exposed to the arts through personal experience. It will facilitate interviews of local artists by junior high and high school art classes using the StoryCorps model; instruct younger students how to develop "book trailers" for a shared experience in literature; and facilitate scholarly conversations between regional universities and students. It will also enhance the library’s collection of books about the arts and various artists.

“In another year of plentiful applications, the competition for the 2015 award was stiff,” said Fyan jury chair Larry Greico. “The Loleta D. Fyan Award Jury is pleased to present the award to the Smithville Public Library, in rural Smithville, Texas, for their 'Enriching Education' project, in which the library reached out to the school to enhance arts and humanities education for the entire community of learners, from young children to older adults. This innovative and exciting project is in keeping with the spirit of the Fyan Award, enhancing library service to rural areas and small communities, as well as engaging in cooperative partnerships outside the library.”

This $5,000 grant, given annually on a competitive basis, is named for Loleta D. Fyan, an ALA past-president (1951-52), who provided funds for the American Library Association (ALA) in her will. The grant supports a project that will develop and/or improve public library services, will effect changes that are innovative and responsive to the future and have potential for broader impact and application beyond a specific local need. Applicants can include, but are not limited to, local, regional or state libraries, associations or organizations, including ALA units, library schools or individuals.

For guidelines and a list of previous winners see: