Segregation in UMD Libraries and UMD Library Education in the Early 1970's

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Bradley, Benjamin
This presentation is an introduction to some research-in-progress, rooted in the Diamondback and the Black Explosion, that I would like to share on racial (in)justice issues affecting the University of Maryland and libraries that happened in the early 1970’s. The first story focuses on accusations from McKeldin Library staff and the library Equal Education and Employment Officer about discrimination library employees faced. The second focuses on the story of the Urban Information Specialist program in the School of Library and Information Services. The program, pioneered by James Welbourne, was a radical program that focused on developing black library leaders to serve in inner cities. The Master’s degree program didn’t even technically require an undergraduate degree and focused on site education rather than classroom and textbook focused programs. The program was controversial and only supported by the federal government, not the library school or the university. When the program stopped receiving federal funding, the school decided to discontinue with program which garnered student protests.