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June 2016 


On June 1, five museums and five libraries from across the nation received the 2016 National Medal for Museum and Library Service for what First Lady Michelle Obama described as "an unwavering commitment to improving the lives of the people they serve." Read more


Capitol Hill Maker Faire Connects Congress to Making 
The second annual Capitol Hill Maker Faire took place on June 21 in the Rayburn House Office Building and was open to Members of Congress, staff, as well as members of the public.  Read more

Let's Move! Museums & Gardens Support Healthy Communities
Let's Move! Museums & Gardens is a component of First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! initiative to raise a healthier generation of kids. Through exhibits, programs, and healthy food service, more than 700 museums and gardens in all 50 states are taking action to provide fun opportunities for fitness and learning. If your institution is doing this work, sign up to participate and promote your work with the downloadable logo . If your institution is already participating, submit success stories with photos to

Webinar Will Explore Communities of Practice for Librarians
Communities of Practice (CoPs) are informing both research and practice of effective facilitation of library-based and online learning. A free IMLS webinar on July 27 at 3:00 ET will share new perspectives about CoP and explore lessons learned from a variety of organizations with CoPs, including Proliteracy, ACRL, YOUMedia Learning Labs, STAR_NET, Portland State University, and other national and state-based organizations. Save this link to join the webinar on July 27 and check the IMLS website for more information about this opportunity.  


We like stories about mavericks. We like to hear about how with perseverance and perhaps a little luck, a lone individual followed her or his dreams and, to quote Steve Jobs, "put a ding in the universe."  Read more

During this "National Week of Making" at the Exploratorium, our XTech program started its first week of summer Tinkering programming for middle school Bay Area youth. Read more

Read all the blogs in our National Week of Making Blog Series:
Conner Prairie: Connecting History Through Making
LA Public Library: Full STEAM Ahead for National Week of Making
Consider this: Do public libraries positively improve education outcomes for children and youth through their summer reading and summer learning programs? How will they know? These are the questions that the Urban Libraries Council had the opportunity to explore with diverse thought leaders from both inside and outside of the library field via the National Forum on Effective Summer Learning in Libraries.  Read more

In early May 2016, the Bailey-Matthew National Shell Museum reached the milestone of 100,000 cataloged lots in its mollusk (mostly "dry shells") collection. This high-priority project, which includes web dissemination of a searchable version of the catalog, was funded by two IMLS grants. Read more

Imagine a summer reading kick-off event, with an array of partners in support roles. The library has signed on to be a meals distribution site, to fill the gap we know exists when students are out of school. There are AmeriCorps volunteers at the ready to lead activities, and later in the summer the bookmobile will spend several weeks reaching kids with transportation barriers to the library. Coordinated efforts like this are happening in select communities throughout the U.S. Read more


"Taking it to the Streets: Serving Your Community in Innovative Ways," Association of Midwest Museums in partnership with the Minnesota Association of Museums Steve Shwartzman, Senior Program Officer; Minneapolis, MN, July 27 - 30 

Visitor Studies Association Conference: Ammie Farraj Feijoo, Deputy Director, ODIS; Matt Birnbaum, Senior Program Officer; Sandra Toro, Senior Program Officer; Boston, MA, July 19 - 23
About the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive.

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