The USC Libraries joined the entire USC community to honor 2020 graduates in joyful online celebrations. Last Thursday and Friday the libraries honored fellows of its Sidney Harman Academy for Polymathic Study and graduates of the Master of Management in Library and Information Science (MMLIS) program.
Student speakers Mana Afsari, Matheus De Castro Borges, Tianna Shaw-Wakemen, Jorge Rojas Ortega, and Jordan Kessler shared their stories of intellectual exploration from a polymathic point of view. Professor of Philosophy and English Ed McCann initiated the inductees as permanent academy fellows. Dean of the USC Libraries Catherine Quinlan, academy Director Tara McPherson and Director of Programs Karin Huebner opened the celebration and welcomed inductees and their loved ones to the digital celebration. The academy was founded in 2010 by USC Presidential Professor and Isaias W. Hellman Professor of Polymathy Sidney Harman and encourages integrated, interdisciplinary investigation through encounters with eminent scholars, artists and professional practitioners.
2020 Academy Fellows
On Friday, May 15, more than 130 guests gathered online to honor the 34 graduates of this year’s MMLIS program. In her opening remarks, Dean Quinlan noted the importance of libraries as essential places of connection and community, “That’s a constant, even in such uncertain times. And with your MMLIS leadership skills, you’ll help take libraries and librarianship into the future, no matter what it may hold.”
2020 MMLIS graduates, family members, and friends
MMLIS graduate Erik Valenzuela was honored with the Ken Haycock Award for Leadership. The prize is named after the program’s inaugural director and selected by fellow students and program faculty who choose an honoree with a distinguished record of academic achievement, collaboration with peers, and leadership throughout their time in the program. Valenzuela is a Kaleidoscope Program Diversity Scholar and a recipient of the Medical Library Group of Southern California and Arizona Student Scholarship. MMLIS Interim Director Christopher Stewart and program administrator Alexis Hackathorn celebrated 2020 graduates and recognized leaders Priscilla Estrada, Johnie Morales Hererra, Denise Hernandez, Alma Lopez, and Trista Tabanico of the award-winning student chapter of the American Library Association.
The USC Libraries are also home to Phi Kappa Phi (PKP), the university’s oldest fully interdisciplinary honor society. This year’s chapter president Professor Alex Capron saluted the PKP graduates for their remarkable academic achievements.