OPPORTUNITY: The Authenticity Project

The Digital Library Federation and HBCU Library Alliance announce The Authenticity Project, “an IMLS-funded mentoring and professional development program for early- to mid-career HBCU library staff.” The goal of the project “is to build a more diverse, inclusive, collaborative, and cohesive next-generation digital library workforce, ready to work across types of institutions in building infrastructure of various kinds (social and technological) in service to a wide array of communities.”

The announcement includes two opportunities: a call for fellows, and a call for mentors:

Call for Fellows:

In the summer of 2022, two cohorts of fellows from HBCUs will join peers in a month-long, funded and facilitated program. Each will receive

  • full travel, lodging, and registration expenses for the DLF Forum and Learn@DLF workshops (October 9-12) in Baltimore, MD
  • facilitated mentoring (with each Fellow selecting two volunteer mentors: one from an HBCU Library Alliance member organization and another from the DLF community, and given discussion prompts to provide a backbone for conversations and exchange)
  • access to an always-available Slack space, email list, and a month of facilitated, synchronous, online networking and learning sessions


Authenticity Project fellows will be early- to mid-career librarians, archivists, or other library employees who currently work at HBCUs and are interested in advancing their knowledge, skills, and professional connections in digital library work. Applicants should demonstrate a commitment to meaningful, community-building ideas and projects in their statement of purpose.

Fellows will commit to participating throughout the month-long program and will be asked to indicate a preference between the dates of Cohort 1 or Cohort 2 when applying. A joint committee of DLF and HBCU Library Alliance representatives will make selections.

2019 fellows are welcome to re-apply (or to participate as program mentors!). However, fellowship preference may be given to new applicants.

To Apply

Potential fellows should submit the following elements

  • A brief statement of purpose that addresses the applicant’s interest in the program and in digital library topics
  • A curriculum vitae or resume
  • A letter of support from their supervisor

Applications will be accepted until 11:59pm EST on March 15, 2022 Extended to April 1.  Apply now.


Call for Mentors:

Each fellow will be supported by two experienced library professionals: one from an HBCU Library Alliance member institution and one from the DLF community.

Over the course of the one-month fellowship program, mentors will share their career experience and knowledge of HBCU and PWI libraries and/or knowledge of the digital library field and provide collegial support, networking assistance, and serve as sounding-boards for fellows. Every mentor will receive access to training on mentorship prior to the program start, connect with a supportive community of peers, will support fellows’ learning through weekly discussions on specific topics, and will be granted $750 stipends in acknowledgment of their time and commitment to the program.

To volunteer

DLF and the HBCU Library Alliance seek participants who are willing to share their expertise and are committed to promoting positive, systemic change in the library field, including by broadening career pathways and professional advancement for HBCU library staff.

Fellows will have the opportunity to choose their mentors based on shared interests. Those who are matched will commit to participating in two mentor training sessions as well as the month-long fellowship program and are eligible to participate in both 2022 cohorts if selected by a fellow in each cohort.

Potential mentors should submit the following elements

  • A brief statement that addresses their interest in the program and career strengths/interests
  • A curriculum vitae or resume
  • A letter of support from their supervisor (encouraged but not required)

Mentor sign-ups will be accepted until 11:59pm EST on March 15, 2022 Extended to April 1Volunteer now.

dh+lib Review

This post was produced through a cooperation between Nickoal Eichmann-Kalwara, Caitlin Christian-Lamb, Linsey Ford, Pamella Lach (dh+lib Review Editors), and John Russell (Editor-in-Chief).