Wanted: A few good teens
As board members, teens between the ages of 13 and 19 will have an opportunity to influence the work of the IPL. Potential board members need not live in the United States, but should be fluent in English. Board members will have the opportunity to evaluate Web sites, contribute graphics and design ideas, and participate in the development of new projects for the Division. Another benefit to serving on the board is the opportunity to include such service and experience on a college or university admission application. Details about serving on the board and an application form are available at http://www.ipl.org/teen/boardform.html.
This special area of the IPL devoted to teen-agers is available at http://www.ipl.org/teen/ and features topics ranging from Issues and Conflicts to Sports and Politics. The site also offers subdivisions in Math & Science with links to other sites such as “CELLS Alive,” “Ask Dr. Math,” and “Anyday in History” and “Youth Conventions” through the Politics and History subdivision. The subdivision on sports offers links to the official NBA site as well as sites on rollerblading and skateboarding. Through the subdivision on health, a teen can reach sites dealing with body image and eating disorders, nutrition, sex, and substance abuse or use the Career and College subdivision to reach sites pertaining to financial aid, test preparation and guides to colleges and universities. From “Arts Writing” where teens can get writing instruction or read the writings of other teens as well as contribute their own, the IPL offers easily accessible sites and links for teens to find the quality information resources they need.
“The Teen Division provides coherent, well-organized access to quality information resources, and treats teen-agers as people, not as a market to be exploited or a problem to be solved,” says Sara Ryan, the IPL’s Teen Division coordinator.
Begun in 1995 as a graduate student project, the IPL, which is partially supported by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is now staffed by professional librarians with assistance from students and volunteer librarians from around the world. The IPL maintains a collection of network-based ready reference works; responds to reference queries; creates resources for children and young adults; evaluates and categorizes resources on the Internet; and provides a space for exhibitions. The IPL strives to be a source of innovation in the networked environment, seeking partnerships with organizations with compatible goals.