Mini Regional Leadership Academy for PA School Librarians

Emerging Leaders
Sustaining Leaders

Regional Leaders

Mini Regional Leaders

What’s the model for the Mini Regional Leaders Academy? 

The four highly successful Leadership Academies in which 95 PA school librarians participated between 2017 and 2018: 

Emerging Leaders Academies of 2014-15 and 2015-16, in which 44 librarians new to the profession built their leadership and presentation skills. 

Sustaining Leaders Academy of 2016-17, in which 23 experienced librarians rejuvenated their leadership skill set and developed and carried out a Personalized Learning Experience. 

Regional Leaders Academy of 2017-18, in which 28 new and experienced librarians focused on enhancing their leadership skills and helped to develop the PA School Library Communicators Network. 

Participants in the Leaders Academies agree that participating helped them build confidence, assume leadership roles, and affirm their value in helping students succeed. 


How many librarians will be selected to participate? 

Twenty-four PA school librarians will have the opportunity to expand their leadership, communication, interpersonal, and presentation competencies and implement a communications network for PA school librarians. If you’re selected, you’ll be part of and learn from a team of like-minded, energetic librarians and mentors, and contribute to the advancement of school libraries and librarians in Pennsylvania. 


What organizations sponsor the Mini Regional Leaders Academy? 

The Pennsylvania School Librarians Association (PSLA) and the University of Pittsburgh School Library Certification Program have sponsored leadership academies for PA school librarians since 2014. 


What funding supports the Mini Regional Leaders Academy? 

A competitive Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant from Commonwealth Libraries of the PA Department of Education. 


What learning activities will you participate in during the Mini Regional Leadership Academy? 

April 6 through September 30, 2018: Expanding and sharpening your leadership and advocacy competencies as well as your communication, interpersonal, and presentation skills. 

2018-19 School Year: Participating in the PA School Library Communicators Network that will “connect, communicate, and create community” for PA school librarians. 


How will you benefit and how will your school and school district benefit from participating in MRLA? 

You’ll participate in “hands-on” professional development through face-to-face and virtual interactive experiences as well as have your own mentor to help you enhance and polish your leadership competencies to “lead from the middle.” 

As a solo librarian, you’ll have the advantage of participating in a personalized “post-graduate” experience with other librarians who have experiences and initiative to match your own. 

You’ll have your own “true north” group of trusted colleagues and mentors to call upon for affirmation, advice, and support for years to come. 

By participating in this “once-in-a-professional lifetime” leadership opportunity, you’ll be making an investment in your professional career that will continue to pay dividends for years to come. 


Who may apply for the Mini Regional Leaders Academy? 

First year, beginner, mid-career, or very experienced—whatever your years of experience, please consider applying. Become a member of an outstanding team of PA school librarians identified as leaders in their schools and school districts as well as in their geographic regions, and in PSLA. 

What’s the schedule of the Mini Regional Leaders Academy? April 1-September 30, 2018 

We recommend--but do not require--that you attend the PSLA Conference, Hershey Lodge, Hershey, May 3 4-5 (H,F, Sa) 

  • May 4 (F):PA School Library Communicators Network Session (11:30am-12:30 pm). Learn about our “connect, communicate, create community” network. 
  • May 4 (F): All 2014-2018 Leaders Academy Participants Dinner (5:30-7:15 pm). Meet past participants and talk with them about their experiences. 
  • May 5 (Sa): Regional Leaders Gallery Walk of Library Ideas (10:30 am-12:45 pm). See for yourself what this year’s participants have accomplished with their Personalized Learning Experiences. 

We require your participation in these experiences: 

  • June 19-20-21 (T,W,H): Immersion Experience for Regional Leaders, Chambersburg, PA. 
  • July 10-11-12 (T,W,H): MRLA Culminating Experience & Orientation to PA School Library Communicators Network Campaign, PSLA Summit, Hershey. 
  • Four Virtual Academy sessions: one hour one evening in May, June, August, & September 2018, conducted via videoconferencing (specific dates and times to be determined). 

What expenses will the LSTA grant cover if you’re accepted as a Regional Leader? 

  • May 4 (F)--If you choose to attend the PSLA Conference: All 2014-2018 Leaders Academy Participants Dinner (5:30-7:15 pm). 
  • June 19-20-21 (T,W, H)--Immersion Experience: All meals from June 19 lunch through June 21 lunch and lodging for 2 nights (June 19 and June 20) at a hotel TBD in Chambersburg. 
  • July 10-11-12 (T,W,H)--MRLA Culminating Experience & Orientation to PA School Library Communicators Network: Dinner, July 10; lunch and dinner July 11; lunch July 12; and lodging for 2 nights, July 10 and 11, at the Hershey Lodge in Hershey, PA. 

What expenses will you be responsible for individually? (We encourage car-pooling.) 

  • May 3-4-5 (H,F,Sa): if you choose to attend the PSLA Conference in Hershey May 3-4-5, your conference registration and any hotel, travel, and meal expenses. 
  • June 19-20-21, 2018 (T,W,H): Your transportation to and from Chambersburg (a centrally located and easily accessible location for all) for the MRLA Immersion Experience. 
  • July 10-11-12, 2018: Your transportation to and from Hershey for the MRLA Culminating Experience & Orientation to PA School Library Communicators Network at the PSLA Summit. 

If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Mary Kay Biagini at 412-624-5138 or at 

PSLA-University of Pittsburgh Leadership Academies LibGuide: 


Please submit your signed application, your resume, and your signed Administrator Endorsement Form as PDFs via email to Dr. Mary K. Biagini, University of Pittsburgh, no later than Monday, March 26, 2018 @ 11:59 p.m.